What are your best stories, anecdotes of adoption (or other forms of parenthood where one parent's genes aren't necessarily used)?

I was adopted, but by my aunt and uncle, whom I think of as mom and dad. My biological father passed away a few weeks before I was born, and as it was my mom's 3rd husband, she was understandably devastated. Emotionally she was unable to handle raising her first child on her own, so I lived with my aunt and uncle. As far as I understand, the original idea was she would move in with us eventually, but for whatever reason that never happened. At some point within the first three years of my life, after being shuttled back and forth a few times, my aunt and uncle agreed with my mom that it would be best if they became my legal guardians.

I would spend a few weeks every summer with my mom, who lives half way across the country, and she would also visit during Christmas and a few other times during the year. Eventually she met another great man, who she is now married to. They never had another kid, so I basically had two sets of parents growing up, and while I obviously have a stronger bond with the parents that raised me, my mom and her husband were and remain a huge part of my life. They are very different kinds of people though, my two sets of parents, which led to some conflict throughout my childhood, and I think it definitely messed with my identity a little bit. Never having a clear authority and basically getting pulled in two different directions with two different sets of parents vying for my affections. There were definitely points in my life where I was burdened with assuring one parent or another that I really do love them and etc. etc.

A first world problem for sure, but it makes you feel like shit you're at the center of disagreements between sets of parents, and it makes you confused when you have one set encouraging you to follow a certain life path, and another encouraging you to do something else. I often felt pulled apart as a teenager especially, and when I was younger I was definitely confused about my place in the family. Especially in relation to my adoptive parents other son, who is my older brother.

Overall though, I had a great childhood, and all of my parents are amazing people whom I respect and I'm lucky to have in my life. And I mentioned my brother, whom I also love and have a great relationship with, and it's not lost on me how hard it must have been for him to have a brother dropped in his lap out of nowhere - although we had an unusually great relationship. While I think there are things they could have handled better, we're all human and I'm an adult now, so it's my job to deal with those issues. Knowing what I know about the world I find it hard to be anything but grateful for the childhood I had.

/r/AskWomen Thread