Bio-mom doesn't have the perfect 'Leave it to Beaver' family. But who does? Her own unit is in tact and doing fine (husband & daughter) but her extended family is not so great. She has a nephew in prison in Nevada. It seems to be one of those gray areas. Basically, he was 19 and the girl was 16 and her family pressed charges. I think he had trouble before that though. I don't know bio-cousin so I'm certainly not rushing to any one's defense. I don't rush to persecute in this case either... so that's where I stand in case you were curious.
Bio-mom tells me that she looked up her nephew's release date and decided to also look up my bio-dad and see if he has a record. And it turns out he does. He did some time (a few months) in late 2007 for attempted theft. So, that's nice, huh? She told me that bio-dad at some point had a lurid affair with cocaine... on again, off again. That's when she lost touch with him. He's probably still been in and out of that world. So, I'm really not in any rush to get in touch with him. I haven't decided yet whether that makes me feel guilty or not. Bio-mom says not to feel guilty. She doesn't want the drama either.
It's not that I would hold it against him or judge him harshly or anything like that. I have another close relative in prison too - the brother that I (sort of) grew up with. I say "sort of" because he was in and out of trouble from childhood and considering he is 8 years older than me, that's all I remember of him - being in and out of juvenile hall, jail, and then prison. He wasn't around all that much. This situation is different though. My brother hurts people in ways that are unforgivable to me. I don't know what bio-dad's situation is but the main reason I don't want to rush to contact him is because I don't want the drama. I know what will happen. I will feel like I need to keep in touch with him because maybe that will help him in his life. I will feel like maybe I should give him some money for this or that because I know that the hole he may be in grows exponentially more and more difficult to dig your way out of the further down you go. I know that life is such that the better off you are, the easier it is to achieve success. I feel it's important to give people a boost in life and to give second chances. And I feel somewhat responsible when it's someone I know. But there is only so much of me that I can give. I have to look out for myself and my future too. And maybe that can be an example for others to do better at looking out for their own lives and taking care of themselves. But at the same time, people learn in different ways and have different needs in life. Okay.... now I'm starting to delve into the debate for and against individualism. I'm really not in the mood to talk philosophical or political theory today. But now everyone has an idea of the internal debate that goes on in my head. I hope I'm not the only one who debates with herself. I don't think I am.... but maybe I am. I'll debate that with myself for the rest of the day!