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Teenage girl finds out she was literally 'switched at birth,' forced to live with parents' brand new 'REAL' daughter. AITA? UPDATED

Teenage girl finds out she was literally 'switched at birth,' forced to live with parents' brand new 'REAL' daughter. AITA? UPDATED


When this 15 year old girl is shocked to learn that she was actually switched at birth, and is then subjected to meeting her parents' 'real daughter,' she asks the internet:

"I'm not my parents bio daughter, I feel terrible about it and ruined an important moment for her. AITA?"

I know that I'm probably the TA, but I feel so upset and confused I just needed an outside opinion. Last year, a child service worker contacted by parents to ask if they would be willing to take a child (15 F) who was recently orphaned and had biological ties to them.

What was even weirder was that she (Sofia) was a genetic match to both of my parents. After some investigation, it turned out that she was their real daughter: the hospital messed up and accidentally switched me with her. I'm not actually their daughter.

Obviously once my parents found out Sofia was their daughter they took her in. It's been around a year since she moved in, and everyone has been so happy since she came.

I know that I'm a terrible person for being so self-pitying when Sofia is going through so much more, but ever since the truth came out I've been feeling really terrible.

I never really fit in with my family and have always been very self conscious about it. When I was little, people used to call me the ugly duckling (which is a pretty good description if I'm being honest, except I never grew up into a swan).

My parents and my older siblings have always excelled at school, they're naturally gifted athletes and really popular. I'm pasty, pimply and have a lot of social anxiety. I have a hard time fitting in at school and used to get bullied which caused everyone a lot of problems.

And now there's Sofia, who has the same clear skin and shiny black hair and poise as them, and even though she just joined the school last year all the teachers and students love her. We're in all the same classes and I can't help comparing myself with her. She's so obviously a better fit in the family, even my cousins commented on it.

A month ago, I got a small award (not the big 3) for some digital art, but because we hadn't gotten booster shots yet my parents said we couldn't go to the exhibit. Now Sofia just won a student leader award, and my parents are throwing a party for her.

I get it's not the same situation, and that her award is much bigger than mine, and everyone got their shots now but I just started feeling so terrible when I saw how proud and happy my parents looked with an arm around her, that I couldn't take it and had to leave.

Sofia saw I was going from across the room and asked kind of loud where I was going, and then everyone turned to stare at me and just I started crying and ran away. AITA?

Before we give you OP's update, let's take a look at some of the top responses:

aztech7 writes:

Oh honey, I am absolutely sorry that you have ended up in this situation! I don’t think you’re TA at all, and quite frankly, I’m more concerned with your family checking in with you since this all went down.

YOU also found out that you’re not biologically part of the family that you were raised with. THAT IS HUGE!! I hope you’ve been able to talk to someone about this, or have been able to go to therapy to talk about your feelings. This situation is hard. There is no way around it.

You’re still trying to consider Sofia’s emotions and feelings, and that is such a great quality to have. But I don’t want you to forget to do that for yourself. As much as Sofia is going through this life changing news, so are YOU.

You are not less than because you’re not biologically family. I know it’s easier to say that than to feel that. And while you might not have any ties to biological family, you still have your family that you grew up with.

And if you feel like that isn’t right or isn’t enough, you can always make your own family. Trust me. You don’t have to be blood or be married to someone to have a family dynamic. I’m so much closer with my friends than I am with my family (and it’s weird bc it’s not like they’re terrible, it’s just, eh?)

I just think that it’s important to have this talk with your parents. They may not even be aware that you feel this way (although in my opinion, I feel like they should and you should be supported, but again that’s just me).

Adults can be oblivious and stupid, take it from a stupid and oblivious adult. It’s okay to feel everything you’re feeling, and it’s not wrong.

I highly encourage you to keep talking about you’re feeling. And if you can’t say it, write a letter. Sometimes we can’t say how we feel and look someone in the eye. So write it down and have them read it in another room.

Keep your head up, you have so much ahead of you.

eeksiepeeksie writes:

NAH I am so, so, SO sorry that you are having to go through this. It is not fair for ANY of you! Not fair at all! I don’t blame you at all for feeling the way you do. Yes, there are good reasons why this party was able to happen and yours wasn’t.

For sure. But that doesn’t stop your feelings! I do hope you are getting some therapy (and family therapy) to help everyone adjust to a situation that couldn’t be further from normal.

I grew up without a sister. But deep down, I knew and still know that I would’ve probably not gotten along with one. She probably would’ve been prettier than me and not fat. I would’ve been terribly jealous.

And that’s if I’d grown up with one! If I’d had one dropped off at the house all the sudden, I would’ve completely lost my shit. I totally feel you in this situation and, again, I am so sorry.s

And as a parent, trying to see it through your parents’ eyes, jeez. They adore you and always have and probably assume you know that, and then this other child arrives with who knows what horrible background, and your parents probably feel like they “owe” her and need to “make up time” and make up for her bad previous experiences.

They probably want to make extra sure that she doesn’t feel “less than” you… the one who was raised with their love. They probably need to hear your feelings and you surely need to hear their unchanged feelings about you.

Knowledge source: I have a set of teenage twins and one of them took me aside once and told me they felt I loved their twin more than I loved them. We had a nice talk and a nice cry. Literally two days later, the twin took me aside and told me she felt like I loved her twin more than her.

It was all good in that it showed me that things must be pretty balanced if each felt the other was more favorite. But it was an awesome opening to an ongoing dialog about how important and special each one is. You need this.

speedy518 writes:

This is absolutely incredible….I don’t know the statute of limitations on this but could you guys sue the hospital for royaly screwing up your lives?? That way you can have something to dry all those tears with? Pay for college, etc.

In all seriousness, what you’re feeling is 100% normal. When I had another kid my oldest went to her teacher and said we didn’t love her anymore so we were having another baby.

We had shown that girl nothing but love but at the same time I get it. It’s like if your boyfriend was like “I love having a gf so much that i’m getting another girlfriend!” You’d be mad and sad too.

You’re clearly pretty young so the connections in your brain that make this ok and fair like you want it to feel just aren’t there yet.

Kind of like when someone eats the last cookies you’re just like “whatever” but 6 yr old you would have lost your mind even though cookies are infinite and you would cross paths with one again because the connections in your brain just weren’t there yet.

Don’t be so hard on yourself and def talk to your parents. I try so hard as a parent to not treat one of my kids better than another but it’s not always easy.

OP's update, 21 days later:

I was swapped at birth. A while back I posted about how miserable I felt because I didn't feel like I belonged to the family that raised me.

I had been struggling with insecurities for years, and it got so so much worse when we learned I had been switched at birth, that my biggest fears came true and really wasn't part of this family.

I couldn't stand to be around their real daughter, Sofia. It didn't feel like we were sisters, it felt like I was an imposter, and she was a princess. I ended up breaking down during a party for her and ran away. I posted here because I wanted someone, anyone to tell me that it was going to be okay, that I was loved.

Someone did. I found out later that Sofia left the party as soon as she saw me crying, that she spent hours searching for me before finding me in the old treehouse.

I was miserable and embarrassed, tried to give some type of apology, but dissolved into more crying and a word vomit of my insecurities. She hugged me, and let me sob all over her. She told me the party didn't matter, that I was more important to her.

It hurt so much to hear that, because I didn't expect it, didn't feel like I could believe it. It felt like too much, like it was more than I deserved. For the next week relatives scolded me about 'overreacting', but it didn't hurt so bad because someone was on my side.

We went to the art exhibit with my work later because she couldn't believe I hadn't gone yet. We got ice cream, and she gushed about how talented I was. She's at the top of the class, and captain of the girls varsity volleyball team -- she's a thousand times more talented, but she spoke like I was the rebirth of the renaissance.

Sofia took me shopping, and showed me the cream my mother used to use because she figured our skin types would be similar and guess what-- I don't have acne anymore! She told me I'm beautiful, that I have my father's eyes and laugh, and my mother's button nose.

After that she cried because it hurt to remember them, and I cried with her. She defends me at school and at home -- when a cousin took a crack at my weight, Sofia went positively glacial. "That's my sister you're talking about." until he turned red and apologized. When I'm sad she rolls a blanket around me and calls it a burrito.

It doesn't hurt me now when people compliment Sofia or comment how she's my parents 'real' daughter, because she is their daughter and she really is amazing, she deserves compliments.

I've stopped feeling bad that my parents connect with her so much more easily than they've ever done with me, that they take more interest in what she's doing than they've ever done with me.

Because now I have someone who gets me. She tells me nice things about me everyday, and I'm starting to believe her.

We weren't born to the same people, or raised by the same people, but she's my sister and that makes me feel so, so lucky. I'm going to be a better sister, the best sister, I've never felt so much like family before.

Readers continued to weigh in on OP's updates:

pippin4242 writes:

Sofia reminds me a bit of a friend I had at my village school. She was amazing! She was stunningly beautiful, incredibly sweet-natured, and pretty bright, excelling in art and doing well in all other things by diligence and hard work.

She and her sister were the only mixed-race people at the school, so it seemed even more natural that they would stand out and be put on a little bit of a pedestal.

And you know what? We were the only AFAB people in our year group, and my clever but neuroatypical ass never felt overshadowed by her. We became great friends despite my difficulties with school. She shone bright and people loved to be around her.

Idk. I expect the parents could do more for sure, but Sofia does need comfort and she probably is very noticeable.

desparis writes:

It’s so sweet that oop has a sister now, but yeah, f their parents (not oop’s bio/Sofia’s adopted parents- they seem like they were awesome people. The parents that are alive and “raising” them both now).

OOP calls Sofia’s and her’s nice mom “her mother” even though she never met her- most adoptees use the “bio” distinction and in my experience (nothing scientific or proven ofc).

Kids don’t typically do that right away and usually make the “bio” distinction unless they had a really fraught relationship with their adoptive parents.

Also the fact that she says her sister who she only met a few months ago makes her feel love and that she’s “never felt so much like family before” says a lot of good about Sofia, ofc, but a lot of bad about her parents, that being treated like family is so novel for her.

And the fact that their bad parents are allowing others to refer to Sofia as their “real daughter” and not putting a stop to that shit? F ‘em.

I would even wager a guess that Sofia loves OOP more than she even likes the rest of her new “family”.

Poor girl probably just feels like an extension of their vanity, being paraded around like a trophy, especially after having grown up with parents that were so genuine and loving. She definitely notices how their bad parents as well as the rest of the family treats oop, and I don’t think she appreciates it.

There you have it. What do YOU make of OP's story? Any advice for her?

Sources: Reddit
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