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No longer a bastard

Yesterday was a very special day, but this story starts quite a few years back.

The year was 1989 and my mom was a 40 something divorcee in a little town in NH, with two kids. She had started dating a year or two before and I was as glad for her to be starting fresh as an indifferent tween can be. You see, I was suffering from a severe mental disorder commonly called, puberty, and my brother, well, he always had a knack for making a scene, and he felt there was nothing quite so entertaining as horrifying my mom and her suitors for sport.

So, occasionally, a nice man would offer to treat the whole family to dinner and get to know the kids, and, well, if my mother ever writes her memoirs, you'll be able to laugh at the results.

But in 1989, my mom met Ben. He was an affable and gentle guy who shared the whole family's twisted sense of humor. Over the next few years, we saw him more and more and it was clear that he and my mom were growing closer, despite her demon-like offspring. Finally, one day, they gave me the news.

"Marnie, we're getting married."


I'd been living with this woman for the past 16 or so years and I was wondering if this guy was loco. "Don't you guys want to try living together a little first?" I asked.

But they were resolute. "We love each other and living together isn't going to tells us anything we don't already know.

I thought they were insane. I left them with a shrug and some parting words, "Well, if you get yourself knocked up, don't come running to me for free childcare."

My mom and Ben married in 1992, in a lovely little ceremony in Maine.

My mom throwing her bouquet at the wedding.

In the years since, Ben has seen some of the hardest times our family has been through and brought us countless laughs. He has embraced our insanity and added a dash of his own to the mix.

Ben and my mom at a friend's wedding.

I'm sure there have been times when Ben has wondered what he got himself into. Heaven knows, I still think he's crazy.

But after nearly 20 years with our ragtag family, Ben has made official what has felt true for so many years. Ben is now, officially, technically, legally and biologically (wait, not that last one) my father.

AdoptionCertificateMarnie.jpg adiption_02.jpg
My adoption papers and Ben and his lawyer at the court house.

Happy Father's Day, Daddy-o!

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Comments (51)

sorry, i'm way behind in my blog reading.

but i had to comment. what a wonderful story and congratulations to both of you.

Wow. That has got to be the coolest thing I've ever heard. Congratulations!


wonderful family story, Marnie. great news to share with us


Great story!


I surfed over here from I lost my Dad a year ago last December and your story has me weeping uncontrollably but smiling too! How lucky you are to have a Dad in EVERY sense!

You know, my Dad wasn't my "biological" Dad either, altho I was adopted as a newborn but when you're lucky enough to have someone who loves you *by choice* who needs shared DNA?

Congrats on you legitimacy, finally! :)

Ferklempt here, too. Congratulations to you all, what a great post to share!


Congratulations to you, Ben and the whole family!!

Congrats to you and the whole family!!! What a great journey for you all.

By the way, it looks like Joni Mitchell is laughing and holding up her leg in the current pic of Ben and your mom. I'm just saying.


Thank you for sharing this with us - how wonderful! I didn't know you could still choose to do this as an adult.

Oh, such a sweet ending to a hilarious post... I heart Ben for this... your mom looks so happy with him!

Fabulous! Congratulations to both of you.


How cool is that?!!!!!
Congratulations to you both! :)

have a great weekend!


The screen swam for a second or two. Congrats!

First off, I think it's hilarious that you suggested they live together first, but CONGRATS to you both!

Wow, what an amazing story! That's so awesome.

Congrats to you! I'm gonna admit I'm a little teary eyed now...I'm over-emotional with my current doggie crisis as it is, and then reading this? Just makes me think of the amazing man who has been my daddy for 20 years now. Sometimes biology just doesn't matter. Thanks for sharing your story.

That's just the cutest thing!


Congratulations Marnie! Good Dads can be hard to come by but this one seems like a real keeper.

Aww! Congratulations!

Ahh, your post has me blubbering like a Hallmark commercial!

Your mom's Ben was my mom's Walter. I regret that I never asked him to adopt me (he would've in a heartbeat). I was able to let him know without a doubt just how much I thought of him as my dad, though, before he died five years ago.

Congratulations to you all! :-)


Congratulations on your dad!


Yea! It's a girl!
I am so happy for you and your whole family. What a great man, and he got himself a great daughter.

Congratulations! That is a great story.


Congratulations sweets! =)


That's all kinds of lovely. Remember to get him something silly for Father's Day. ;^)


That's so awesome! What a happy family. :) Congrats!


Such a wonderful story! Congrats!

Hey! Quit making me cry at work! :) Congratulations.


How wonderful! Congrats!

That is so sweet. I've got tears running down my face...Congrats...I'd say your family is pretty great! :)

Very, very cool! Congrats from one adoptee to another.


Awesome. I laughed, I cried. I'll call my dad tonight. Congrats to a lucky dad and his lucky girl. I'm amazed mine didn't kill me frankly ;)

And, wait a minute, you're from NH? Have I noticed that before and forgotten?


Thanks for sharing this sweet story. Congrats!


Oh, that story is just so sweet! My SO & I have been together since about a year after my divorce & have lived together since Sept 1986 when my girls were 10 & 13. I know he was extremely touched a couple of years ago when one of them sent him a Father's Day card. In many ways he has been more of a father to them than their own father. And, my grandsons love him more than just about anyone. The older one asked him one day, "Do other children have a John?" I think it has begun to occur to the 6 year old just how lucky they are to have so many adults who are crazy about them.


Happy Family! Well done you. And yer mum. And Ben.

Congrats to your mom for finding a good 'un! :)

And congrats to you for getting a dad.

that is so sweet! my husband wants to adopt both my boys, but the older one is a bit hesitant. he has better memories of his biological father than my younger one does. my younger one has taken my husband's name for everything except legal stuff, and gets upset when he has to use his legal name (he's 13, older son is 15).

what's really funny is the difference in spelling between the boys' last name and my husband's is one letter. so their initials would stay the same.

hubbie wants to move forward with adopting the younger one, but i'm a little leery of the older feeling left out.

good to know that if liam wants it later in life, it can still happen

oh marnie, what a wonderful post and what a great thing to be able to say. it is so cool to see you have both chosen your family, i love that family can come in such wonderful ways. congrats.

Gawd, that is really sweet! Congratulations for you both. Today really is Father's Day for you two.


What a nice story. :) Congrats to your whole family!

Congratulations! He sounds like a brave and wonderful man ... although I imagine you're a lot more sane these days (grin).

That is totally cool! I had no idea that adults could be legally adopted. :D
Did he pass out pink-banded cigars?
Congrats to the whole family!

This post made me tear up. What a nice story

Congrats!! What a great story!


I love this story! It is so awesome! :) congratulations!

OMG that is sooooooo awesome!!! It almost makes me cry!! What a great man!

Aw! That's 900 kinds of awesome.


What a wonderful story. Congrats! A happy day for your whole family!

Yay! Congrats to you and Ben- you both got a good thing out of this deal, if you ask me! :) xo-S.

P.S. Bastard out of Oregon doesn't work so well, anyway. :)

Awww. That makes me verklempt. You were quite a precocious teen with your "don't coming running to me for free childcare" sass. Not sure how you became such a lovely young lady, but I'm guessing Ben had a hand in that. Give him my congrats!
Love, J


This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on March 20, 2008 4:15 PM.

The previous post in this blog was No longer a bastard.

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