What Family Is To Me. From an adoptee's point of view.

Essay by David ByrneUniversity, Bachelor'sA, February 1997

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What Family Is To Me

Since birth, I have grown up with a different concept of family than most people

do. Instead of being born into my biological family, I was adopted into my given family. I

have known I was adopted, for as long as I can remember because my parents made sure

to tell me so, at the earliest age that I could understand. By adopting me and my sister

into the family, my parents showed that family means love, respect and sacrifice. My

adoption gave me a family to belong to and be loved by.

Love is the first part in any family. I can be defined in more ways than one.

Family love is the strongest type because it is unconditional. This unconditional love

means that no matter what happens my family will still love me. They have shown this

love for twenty years now.

And after all the things I have done wrong, or done badly, my

family still shows this unconditional love to me and to each other.

The second part in a family is respect and trust. Trust is something that can take

years to build, but can be broken very easily. By breaking trust with a family member one

is also breaking respect of the family. The two ideas go hand in hand. My parents

respected me enough to tell me that I was adopted, instead of lying to me and having me

find out later in life that I wasn't their biological son. This respect that my parents gave

me, in turn gave me their trust. And I gave them the respect and trust that was given to


Without sacrifice, a family cannot be. The sacrifices that family members make for

each other show the willingness to be an...