Adopted child loses dad in court ruling
Dear Annie: My nephew, “Bill,” married “Helen.” Helen had a 2-year-old son, “Dylan.” Helen told Bill that Dylan’s father had given up his pare- ntal rights, so Bill legally and happily adopted baby Dylan.
We all came to deeply love baby Dylan. He was adorable, bright and sweet. Dylan quickly felt close to all his many cousins. Four years later, Helen abruptly left Bill for another man. When Bill attempted to get visitation with Dylan, Helen informed the court that Dylan’s father had never really given up his parental rights, so therefore the adoption became void. Tragically, none of us in the family ever saw Dylan again.
How could 6-year-old Dylan begin to understand this? He loved Bill more than anyone in the world, and then one day he never saw him again! We do not know what his mother told him. How could his mother hurt him like this?
I often wonder whether children are ever going to have any rights of their own in our courts. So far, the only rights kids have are not to be starved and not to be beaten. Our children are still lawfully treated as property of their parents. Our courts look out for the parents’ rights. When will our laws become in favor of what is in the best interest of the child? — Still Crying
Dear Crying: Look further into the laws in your state. I think there is a good chance your nephew has recourse here to see Dylan again, especially as he adopted him — or at least was led to believe he did. Some states do have laws that take such factors into consideration, with the goal of doing what’s best for the child. Don’t give up hope.
Dear Annie: I feel that your reply to “Serially Disappointed” was a cop-out. I hear what this young woman is saying.
I am in my early 60s and have been divorced for 15 years. The men I meet are seriously lacking in relationship and basic life skills. I will admit I settled for much less than I should have with my most recent three partners because they had many good qualities that attracted me.
One decided after three years that I was “too fat” (I am a size 12), and he met a woman who is shorter than I am but not thinner. Another, after two years, told me he had a boyfriend and thought it was OK to date us both at the same time because he is bisexual. I ended the relationship, and six months later, he was married to a woman.
Another one sat on my couch one day and began crying, telling me he missed his wife, whom he had divorced five years earlier. (They eventually remarried.)
My friends, all married or in long-term relationships, said, “Take some time for yourself!” I don’t know what they were thinking when I’d been spending most birthdays, Christmas Eves and New Year’s Eves alone for years.
I haven’t dated for two years. Now the same friends say, “You have to get yourself out there!” I go to movies, plays and other events alone. I bicycle on busy bike paths, and I work a job. But the truth is that no one has the answer as to why most single men are so out of whack. So they tell you silly things — for example, “Learn how to be happy with yourself.” “Serially Disappointed” gave no indication she is not happy with herself, and I am indeed happy with who I am. I just wish I could find a quality single guy in his 60s before he is snatched up by one of the millions of intelligent, compassionate, kind single women out there looking. — Will Anyone Love Me When I’m 64?