So you’ve recently been contacted from someone saying they are a cousin, sibling, or child of a US military veteran. What do you do? What do you think? How do you respond?
First of all, don’t panic like I did. This isn’t the end of the world as you know it. Chances are that you or someone in your known family has done a DNA test and it matched with the Amerasian person. If a search angel is involved, like Warbabies, we have done extensive analyzing and researching of your family tree and have deducted or concluded, WITH GENETIC DNA SCIENCE, that they are related to you. Or we are simply just looking for information to fill in any gaps or to rule other connections out.
When I got the message from my Ancestry account that I matched with my half brother that I never knew about, I panicked. Why? Because our father passed away just 10 months prior and my initial thought was it had to be a scam, some weird way for someone to collect money. You all know about those emails from Nigeria, or the daughter of an Arabian princess who needs to send you 3.5 million dollars, right? Those are obviously scams.
However, when I saw the match on AncestryDNA, something inside of me felt like I needed more info. I immediately reached out to my younger brother who also took a DNA test previously and matched with this new person. He saw the same match, and being as he lives in Washington DC and has acquaintances in the government, he reached out to them to find out if this could possibly be a scam. They came back with, “No known scam exists. This is real! DNA doesn’t lie.”
So what now??
We answered! We talked, shared info, asked questions, sent photos, and listened. It was completely awkward at first because we didn’t know what to think, what to say, what to believe. There was a language barrier also, since I was not used to hearing people speak with broken English. I had to be patient and ask to have them repeat themselves. It’s a challenge, but eventually I started to understand better and am even learning some words in another language and learning more about a foreign culture.
It really didn’t take long to accept that we had a new older brother! (I was no longer the oldest sibling lol) And the only thing I regret is not matching with him sooner while our dad was still alive.
Personally, I had no idea that the term Amerasian existed. I had no idea that there were literally hundreds of thousands of Amerasians in the world and that roughly 400 are still in Vietnam and well over a thousand in the Philippenes still looking for their father and American families. I had to do some research to find out more! Just one Google search for “Amerasian” produces countless articles, videos, groups, books, interviews and photos of American Military Veterans looking for their children that’s left behind, most never knowing they even existed, but most Vets were in legitimate relationships with Vietnamese women, some even marrying them!
What should I do?
You have several choices, both good and bad. We don’t recommend ignoring anyone who contacts you. That’s completely rude, at least respond to hear them out. Many Amerasians are desperately looking for their fathers and family, they feel very similar to someone who was an adoptee, they just want to know their families and be accepted. They want health history for themselves and their own children. They want photos to compare what they look like and if they look like someone else who is biologically connected to them.
In the case of Amerasians who are still living in the country where they were born (Korea, Philippines, Vietnam, Germany, Guam), the US government created the Amerasian Homecoming Act, which allows children of US Soldiers who were stationed in these countries to be considered to have US citizenship. Read this again, these Amerasian ARE rightfully allowed to be a US citizen, if they follow the steps and submit their forms and DNA results to prove they are half-American. Most DNA kits are already paid for from either the Amerasian themselves or kind-hearted individuals who donate for these tests. If you are open to accepting their connection to you, they may wish to have help coming to the US. Not necessarily financial help, but documentation as proof you are related. Keep in mind, the majority of Amerasians are already in the US and have already become US Citizens.
The good and kind thing to do is be open about the possibility of discovering you have this wonderful gift of a new relative! They have amazing stories to tell and so much love to give. Please help them, and yourself, have closure and peace. It is the right and moral thing to do!
But am I opening a bad can of worms? What if my family gets angry or upset?
There is the possibility of some family members being angry or upset. But those feelings come from fear, shame, confusion, embarrassment or guilt. Older generations often don’t want to go back in time to relive the horror of war. It’s forcing them to remember the worst part of their life. Every dark cloud has a silver lining, and usually from tragedy comes a lesson. After a storm, look for a rainbow. It doesn’t have to be a negative experience, reconnecting with a long lost or unknown family member can be a positive experience! You can be the missing link that gives another human being the peace and closure they DESERVE!
I’m very angry or upset to be contacted. I don’t want anything to do with this and wish it would go away!
Yes, I have been told this before. It’s terribly sad and frustrating to hear, but we must honor your decision. If you have been contacted by an individual claiming to be your long-lost Amerasian relative and you have no interest or desire to know them, please just state so in a compassionate and polite way. In the event that you tell us at Warbabies that you no longer wish to be contacted again, we will respect your decision. We have already prepared a report to give to our client which may include your contact info and any photos we have found on the internet. All info we find is freely available on the internet through Public Domain. We are NOT to be held responsible for what ever the client does with this information. You have every right to refuse and reject any contact. However, understand that others in your family may not feel the same as you. Please respect their wishes if they want to communicate with their Amerasian relative.
I’m nervous, who can I privately talk to about this?
Call, text or write me!! I’ve been there! And now I have an absolutely wonderful brother, 2 fabulous nieces, 2 very cool nephews and a beautiful sister-in-law that I love and adore! We never share information with anyone without permission. If you are just curious to know, I can be a comforting liaison between you and the Amerasian individual. I am a former search angel to has helped reunite Adoptees with their birth families for over 20 years, and now my focus is to help reconnect US military veterans with the children they left behind. I have the knowledge, tools and experience to help. And I do it out of the kindness of my heart and never charge a fee! This has been my life’s mission to help others and God has blessed me with this ability. I fully intend to use this blessing to help others.
Please help me spread the word, DNA is the link, and knowledge is vital for this generation of brothers and sisters left behind. Veterans often speak of never leaving a fallen soldier behind, their children shouldn’t be ignored or left behind either. Share this post so that we can bring awareness to this very incredible issue.