Finally: “There are a lot of secrets in my parents’ families. But, there are two that involve me. When I was a kid, I visited my grandparents in Guatemala during my breaks from school. When I was 14, I was visiting my paternal grandmother when a girl that looked identical to me (but a bit older) showed up, freaked out when she saw me, and ran off. That’s when my grandmother told me she was my half-sister. Apparently, my dad was 17 when he got his girlfriend pregnant. He wasn’t poor, but he wasn’t wealthy either, so he came to the states to earn more money before going back and marrying his girlfriend. But, when he returned for his daughter’s birth, he discovered his girlfriend had married a rich older man, and they pretty much excluded my dad from his daughter’s life. She didn’t know who her real father was until she was 11 years old and my dad went on vacation to Guatemala with my mom and me.”

“Her mom wanted my dad back, and the day we flew back to the states, she showed up at the airport with her daughter to beg my dad to stay with them. I was only a year old, so I don’t remember this, but my mom and dad have told me. He said no, but he would make sure his daughter was financially secure. She didn’t want anything to do with me out of resentment. I’m 37 now, and that was the first and last time I ever saw her. She kept in touch with my grandmother, though. 

The second family secret came out about six years ago. I did a DNA test through Ancestry.com just for fun and to see what my background really was. I was matched with a first maternal cousin. He was a few years older than me, and I had never met him before. He messaged me asking so many questions. Turns out he was born in Guatemala, but adopted by Americans, and brought back to the states. I asked my mom if any of her eight sisters had given a baby up for adoption, and she said not that she knew of. We asked all of her sisters except for one that had passed away, and no one knew anything. I felt so bad for him, and our communication just kind of fizzled out.”


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