A member of the Army and his wife were living in Texas when his wife discovered that she was with child. The couple attended doctor visits together and the father was excited to have another child. The drill sergeant accepted a position out of state and then martial discord ensued. The wife mentioned the possibility of terminating the pregnancy or giving the child up for adoption, but the father would not consent to those things. The wife was supposed to move to the state he was in after giving birth.
The wife had the child, and then broke contact with the father. He could not get a hold of her, he called her relatives and they did not know where the child was, and then he had a friend drive passed the house they shared that is now vacant. The father called the hospital to inquire after his wife and child but due to confidentiality policies, they could not tell him anything.
The mother called her estranged husband out of the blue to tell him she had placed the child up for adoption. Their daughter was living with a couple in Utah. The father immediately called the adoption agency, but they refused to give him any information. That is when the legal battle for child custody started as this father fought to maintain his parental rights and seek his child.
Reportedly, the adoptive parents knew that the father had not consented to this and that there was a possibility he could oppose to the adoption process. However, once the father tried to reclaim his child, the adoptive parents felt no need to cooperate.
After much battling, a family law judge has ruled the efforts of the father’s former wife, the adoptive parents and the adoption agency were out of line and the judge has ruled the child to be reunited with the father that was wrongfully withheld from his daughter’s life. The adoptive parents are planning an appeal but the judge hopes that this will serve as a “cautionary tale” that will never occur again.
Source: The Salt Lake Tribune, “Father is ready to turn page on Utah adoption horror story,” Brooke Adams, Dec. 3, 2012