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Old 02-07-2013, 05:53 PM
 
Location: Cape Coma Florida
1,369 posts, read 1,956,911 times
Reputation: 2934

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I did not meet my biological father until I was 35, after my younger sister found his social security number in our mother's papers and looked him up. He had left us when I was four, and had not contacted any of us since. I traveled to meet him, and we seemed to get on well enough, but in time he told me something that he implicitly expected me not to repeat, and to keep to myself, which I have done until now.

He told me that after he left us he was approached by a man, who told him that he was in fact the father of his oldest child, my elder brother Mark, who in point of fact looks nothing at all like myself or my father, my father's family being of Russian extraction, dark complected and dark haired.

My older brother, (half-brother) Mark is very fair of hair and complexion, and his features are clearly nothing near my father's or my own, he being long of face and short of stature, while we are quite the opposite. All our lives we have joked that we were twins to others out of our acute awareness that we looked nothing alike.

My mother, who has since passed on, operated very much in such ways, and it is clear she married my father because she was pregnant with Mark by Mr. Johansen.

The man my father told me approached him had a Scandinavian surname, Johansen, and indeed my older brother looks very much to be of Scandinavian descent. This Mr. Johansen told my father this by way of gloating over it, and making fun of him. My father made it plain that I was never to tell Mark of this, and that he considers him to be his son in spite of this.

But Mark is not my father's son, and that my father allows him to believe this while making use of him in various ways has been troubling me for some time now. My father and I no longer speak, partly because of this issue, and partly for other very good reasons that my father is largely responsible for, and he is also party to my estrangement from my brother Mark, having had much to do with that behind my back.

I find it particularly troublesome that my father never bothered to contact us, and never paid child support, for all those years, and had we not looked him up would never have heard from him again, yet now he pretends to be Mark's father, gaining certain financial and material benefits from that relationship, Mark being quite financially successful. Neither of them are speaking to me any longer, for reasons of family garbage exploited by my father.

There is much more to all this than I can say here without it becoming too long a post, but I am still wrestling with the question of whether to tell my brother the truth, of if I will not just stir up still more family garbage that ends badly. Would my brother even listen to me? I don't know. I doubt he would even reply if I emailed him the truth, and I have that email sitting in my drafts, but cannot decide whether to send it.

This is not easy.
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Old 02-07-2013, 06:36 PM
 
11,061 posts, read 8,722,020 times
Reputation: 17985
Quote:
Originally Posted by amylewis View Post
There is much more to all this than I can say here without it becoming too long a post, but I am still wrestling with the question of whether to tell my brother the truth, of if I will not just stir up still more family garbage that ends badly. Would my brother even listen to me? I don't know. I doubt he would even reply if I emailed him the truth, and I have that email sitting in my drafts, but cannot decide whether to send it.

This is not easy.
Short answer: you don't know what "the truth" is. Leave it alone.
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Old 02-07-2013, 06:37 PM
 
Location: New Haven, CT
1,033 posts, read 3,584,569 times
Reputation: 909
I think I would tell. It stinks you didnt have time with your mother to figure it out. But the past is in the past and you cant change it, Id like to know. I still never talked to my pops and im 26. When I was 19 I found out I had about 10 other brothers and sisters. Kinda crazy but its good info to know that you should pass on in life.


^ but if you arent positive then I wouldnt go crazy, as the other poster said
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Old 02-07-2013, 06:47 PM
 
3,483 posts, read 4,833,425 times
Reputation: 5578
You have no proof, and he may not believe you. Many families have both dark hair and blonde hair children from the same parents. If you let this go your brother may become disenchanted with your father all on his own. If he the scoundrel he seems to be your father will soon show his true colors. Good luck.
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Old 02-07-2013, 11:00 PM
 
Location: Southern California
15,085 posts, read 18,254,336 times
Reputation: 10305
Quote:
Originally Posted by biscuitmom View Post
Short answer: you don't know what "the truth" is. Leave it alone.
And I don't see what is achieved by telling the brother now.

[so, OP, don't do it]
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Old 02-07-2013, 11:03 PM
 
Location: Folsom
5,093 posts, read 8,231,339 times
Reputation: 3589
Go see a therapist and talk it out.
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Old 02-08-2013, 07:32 AM
 
26,751 posts, read 25,787,302 times
Reputation: 16488
Quote:
Originally Posted by amylewis View Post
I did not meet my biological father until I was 35, after my younger sister found his social security number in our mother's papers and looked him up. He had left us when I was four, and had not contacted any of us since. I traveled to meet him, and we seemed to get on well enough, but in time he told me something that he implicitly expected me not to repeat, and to keep to myself, which I have done until now.

He told me that after he left us he was approached by a man, who told him that he was in fact the father of his oldest child, my elder brother Mark, who in point of fact looks nothing at all like myself or my father, my father's family being of Russian extraction, dark complected and dark haired.

My older brother, (half-brother) Mark is very fair of hair and complexion, and his features are clearly nothing near my father's or my own, he being long of face and short of stature, while we are quite the opposite. All our lives we have joked that we were twins to others out of our acute awareness that we looked nothing alike.

My mother, who has since passed on, operated very much in such ways, and it is clear she married my father because she was pregnant with Mark by Mr. Johansen.

The man my father told me approached him had a Scandinavian surname, Johansen, and indeed my older brother looks very much to be of Scandinavian descent. This Mr. Johansen told my father this by way of gloating over it, and making fun of him. My father made it plain that I was never to tell Mark of this, and that he considers him to be his son in spite of this.

But Mark is not my father's son, and that my father allows him to believe this while making use of him in various ways has been troubling me for some time now. My father and I no longer speak, partly because of this issue, and partly for other very good reasons that my father is largely responsible for, and he is also party to my estrangement from my brother Mark, having had much to do with that behind my back.

I find it particularly troublesome that my father never bothered to contact us, and never paid child support, for all those years, and had we not looked him up would never have heard from him again, yet now he pretends to be Mark's father, gaining certain financial and material benefits from that relationship, Mark being quite financially successful. Neither of them are speaking to me any longer, for reasons of family garbage exploited by my father.

There is much more to all this than I can say here without it becoming too long a post, but I am still wrestling with the question of whether to tell my brother the truth, of if I will not just stir up still more family garbage that ends badly. Would my brother even listen to me? I don't know. I doubt he would even reply if I emailed him the truth, and I have that email sitting in my drafts, but cannot decide whether to send it.

This is not easy.

do you know for certain that your father never paid support or came to visit? I suggest you be certain of that...nothing against your mother, but a situation like this sometimes causes some very life changing events in people, and they react out of great hurt/depression.

if I were you, I'd discuss this whole situation with your father, and see what you come up with, even the part about your brother....
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Old 02-08-2013, 11:10 AM
 
Location: Noblesville, IN
3,769 posts, read 4,304,117 times
Reputation: 6395
My mother got married...a lot...and had 4 other children by someone other than my dad...before I was even born. When I was twelve, I found out this little tidbit that my oldest sister was only my half sister. My situation is different but it was a stunner to know mom had this past...now, it made no difference in how I saw my sister. She had always known though so again, sitch is different. I only met the three other siblings as mom introduced them as "friends"...my mom was more to blame for all the lies and deception than anyone else.

Here's the thing: he may not believe you so gaining proof will help you. I don't know how you would achieve this, but I absolutely think your brother should know. Some people think you should butt out, but this is YOUR family, too. Maybe you don't tell him...maybe you find another way for him to know or at least question who his father is. Ambiguous family ties and secrets ruin the family more than having stuff in the open. I can almost hear dozens of posters with their stories telling me the opposite, but I still stand by my opinion.

When the parents are screwing around and hiding little secrets and big secrets and pass those secrets to their children, it breeds A LOT of distrust. All of my siblings (and myself) have a hard time trusting people...you just never know what they're hiding...afterall, look at our parents.

Anyway, whatever you decide to do, hang in there...oh...and drop the guilt. Our silly parents leave us with a lot of guilt if they think their secret is going to be "betrayed". That's a load of crap...do what you must but don't feel guilty about it. YOU didn't screw up and lie to your brother. Hang in there.
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Old 02-08-2013, 12:01 PM
 
Location: On the corner of Grey Street
6,119 posts, read 8,823,185 times
Reputation: 11672
Sounds like dad is a real jerk to know he isn't your brother's biological father but pretend to be anyway so he can get money out of your brother. If I knew someone was keeping a secret from my brother I'd tell him. I usually try to avoid drama, but family is different and when it's your family, then it is your business IMO. Your biological dad shouldn't have told you this. What loyalty to you have to him anyway to keep his secrets? He made no effort to be a good dad and you would never have even met him if you had not sought him out. I'm close to my brother, so lying to him would be a no go for me. Just because you guys aren't close doesn't mean you don't care or that you want him to be taken advantage of.

I think ultimately can you shrug your shoulders and go on with life feeling this isn't your problem, or do you feel obligated to tell? If you guys don't have a close relationship anyway then you don't have a lot to lose either way. If he doesn't believe you then at least you tried and it's not like you guys are close. Maybe he will think you're just stirring up trouble and won't believe you, then oh well. I'd tell him without any agenda meaning don't expect him to be thankful to you for telling him. Don't expect anything. Just do it because you feel it is the right thing to do.
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Old 02-08-2013, 01:35 PM
 
Location: Canada
4,517 posts, read 3,093,156 times
Reputation: 5842
Quote:
Originally Posted by amylewis View Post
He told me that after he left us he was approached by a man, who told him that he was in fact the father of his oldest child, my elder brother Mark, who in point of fact looks nothing at all like myself or my father, my father's family being of Russian extraction, dark complected and dark haired.
Unless DNA paternity tests were done, no one, including your father, really knows for sure who your brother's father is. Yes, the physical characteristics of your brother may point to the other man but it's not unheard of for a child to look totally different than the rest of the family. He may be a throw back to an earlier ancestor for example OR your father's father may not really have been his biological father.
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