Celebrities’ lives seem so far removed from our own, it’s hard to imagine their backgrounds as being anything less than ‘perfect.’ But for the following celebrities, their early childhoods were all affected by adoption and the resulting confusion that goes along with not really knowing who you are and where you come from.
However, all of these famous faces certainly didn’t let the fact that they were adopted hold them back; they all went on to achieve greatness in the face of adversity. And with their successes, they also managed to track down their birth families later in life. Here are some inspiring celebrity adoption and reunion stories.
The Apple founder was born in 1955 and was put up for adoption as an infant. His parents, Joanne Simpson and Abdulfattah John Jandali, were unmarried and he was soon adopted by Paul and Clara Jobs. In an interview with biographer Walter Isaacson, Steve said of his adoption;
“I was, I remember right here on the lawn, telling Lisa McMoylar from across the street that I was adopted. And she said, “So does that mean your real parents didn’t want you?” Ooh, lightning bolts went off in my head. I remember running into the house, I think I was like crying asking my parents. And they sat me down and said ‘No you don’t understand; we specifically picked you out.’ From then on, I realised that was not just abandoned. I was chosen. I was special.”
At 27 years old, Steve Jobs traced his family tree and discovered that he had a sister called Mona Simpson who was born to both his birth parents, after they had gotten married. He then developed a close relationship with Mona right up until his death, calling her “one of his best friends in the world.”
The Goodfella’s star was born in Newark, New Jersey in December 1954 and was adopted at 6-months old by Alfred and Mary Liotta. Ray was brought up with a younger, also adopted, sister.
When he became a father himself, Liotta hired a private detective to trace his birth parents and discovered that he had a sister, a half-brother and four half-sisters. When interviewed about the subject Liotta said that when he was a child his adoption made him feel like ‘damaged goods.’ But when he discovered the true secret of his past he said he felt relieved, “I was adopted, only based on that my mother has circumstances that didn’t warrant her to keep a kid.”
Country singer, Faith Hill was born on 21st September 1967 and was adopted at a few days old by Ted and Edna Perry. She grew up knowing that she was adopted and described her childhood as being “amazing.” However, Faith also admitted that she felt like she hadn’t made peace with her past, so in 1993 she decided to track down her biological mother and as result she also found out that she had a brother. Hill and her biological mother enjoyed a good relationship right up until her mother’s death in 2007.
Singer songwriter, Sarah McLachlan was adopted as an infant to Jack and Dorice Mclahlan who also had two adopted sons, Ian and Stewart. She found out that she was adopted at nine years old and said in interview that she remembers not really understanding what adoption really meant and she said at the time it didn’t feel like a ‘big issue.’ However, out of curiosity, later in life, she decided to track down her biological mother. She found out that her biological mother was 19 years old and an artist at the time Sarah was born. Sarah said that she was grateful to her mother for giving her up for adoption as it allowed both of them to follow their dreams.
Can finding people from your biological roots really help you connect to the person you are and bring peace of mind? Or do you have any adoption reunion stories of your own? Share in comments below.
Estelle Page is a writer and mother. She believes that family is the most important thing in the world and is delighted that the internet has brought so many people together. She writes for White Pages