By Suzanne Curley. STAFF WRITER
A FORTY-something friend of mine brought me to tears a few years back when, gazing at the face of her newborn child, she said, “It’s the first time in my life I’ve seen someone who looks like me.” Given up as an infant by a teenaged unwed mother in the Midwest, she had been adopted by a couple who lived many hundreds of miles away.
“When most people look in the mirror, they see whoever they look like in their family,” says 31-year-old Bohemia resident Wendi Springer, who was adopted when she was 10 months old. “When an adoptee looks in the mirror, they see a blank.”
Unless, that is, they’ve undergone the arduous process of unearthing documents to help them piece together their heritage. As in all but three states, records are “sealed” in New York. But the state has a mutual consent registry in which individuals searching for a birth mother or child can place their names and – if the person being sought also has registered – receive access to their records. … Continue Reading