Good morning. My name is Shannon. I have lurked here for some time and have been interested in the outcome of adopted kids. I hope you don't mind if I ask a question. I am a 40-something single mom of a mostly "normal" son. My question is about him and how to help him with his depression. I am sorry its so long. I was raped by an aquaintance my sophomore year of high school. My mother was mortified that something so awful could happen to her (yes, her) and was ashamed of me. She hid in the house and cried for weeks, ashamed to be seen in public. My father was not ashamed of me, but the one comment I recall him saying to me was with regard to my mother...if he was younger, he would leave. The rape went un-reported, and the perpetrator taunted me the remainder of my days in that community (he was an older high school student). In addition, classmates found out about it and heckled me about my "boyfriend". Until then, I had been a good kid. Honor roll student, gifted program, the whole works. The spring of my sophomore year, tho, I pretty much went nuts. I'm not proud of it, but I snuck out at night, partied with anyone, and ended up sleeping with a couple of guys who seemed to like me - behavior I had never done before. After about 3 months of it, I got my head out of my butt and pulled myself back together. And 6 months later discovered I was pregnant. I contacted the "boy" (a 20 year old, by the way) and he said he wanted no part of it and I was to take care of it and have an abortion. After my mother's horrible reaction to the rape, there was no way I could bring myself to tell her this was a result of my own doing, so I just refused to say anything. My father threatened to kill whoever it was (and may well have). And there was also no way I was having an abortion. So I just clammed up. The baby was born in the fall of my junior year. If the doctors asked, I said it was a date gone bad, and refused to name anyone. I chose a family and gave the baby up for adoption, and left town as soon as I graduated. Thru the years, I had contact with the family and the baby. I was treated as "extended family"...like a cousin you see on holidays. It worked. Twelve years later, I was contacted by a friend of the adoptive family. The parents had divorced, which I knew, and the boy was being neglected, left home alone when he should have been in school, failing school, into drugs, and running away, which I didn't know. I checked out the report and the friend was correct. I was stable, doing well in my job, etc, so the friend mediated a meeting, and it was agreed that the boy would come back to live with me until the family could get things back together. Its been ten years since that meeting, and he is still here. He is a good boy. He says now he just wanted someone to care. He fit right into my home, did well in school (as long as someone paid attention), did typical teenage stuff, but really didn't get into any major trouble or cause problems. He was a mediocre student, but he tried. I loved having him in my life, and the adoptive family became friends and we all visited back and forth. He was free to go back and forth to visit as he pleased once they got their lives calmed back down, and it really seemed to work well. But my boy doesn't know who is bio father is. He has expressed, in written notes, that he wants to know, but he won't talk to me about it. He has said that he wants to know someday "if it is someone who's good". I don't know anything about the man anymore, except that my name and number is in the book and my phone has never rung. And I know that he knows that this boy is his son. I have visited my home town. He has seen him with me, both as a tiny baby and a grown man. My son is depressed off and on. His relationship with his girlfriend is rocky. He has given up most of his friends for her. She spends a lot of his money and cuts him short often. He graduated from college and has a good job, lives with a roommate, pays his own way, but he always wants more. He wants a lot of material things (the adoptive family was very material). He has bought a lot of things on credit instead of saving for it (a lot of it jewelry for the girlfriend), but try as we might, we can't get him to budget better and avoid the credit cards. And then he gets down about being too broke or not having anyone to hang out with or whatever, and he always goes back and blames it on the adoption. In addition, my dad passed away 6 months ago. I have heard thru the grapevine that now that my dad is gone, bio father wants to have a relationship with my son. Again, this is just what I've heard, my phone has not rung, and I am easily found. The grapevine says that bio father was afraid of my dad and that is why he only now coming out, since my dad is dead. I don't know whether it will help or hurt my son to tell him about his bio father right now. He has not asked. My son adored my dad. He doesn't know of his grandmother as anyone but the person she is today (we have a decent relationship now). And I don't think I can give him the answers he's going to want without telling him the whole story, which is going to bring unpleasant facets to the lives of people he only thinks great things of. I think he needs to get a counselor and get a solid foundation of who he is before I add this to his load, but I am so unsure of myself and what I can do to help him. Several of you are adoptive parents - any advice?