The mother of the twins is now 85 on a farm in rural South Korea with dementia and Parkinson’s disease.
“When I heard this I was very worried,” Ms. Doerr said. They became more worried when their June trip had to be postponed. Her condition is still mild, they think, but the fear is that “her memory will be less and less available as she ages.”
Their biological brother, who speaks a little English, told the twins that their father wanted sons rather than daughters.
“Accepting all of this,” Ms. Doerr said, “has been an interesting adventure for me.”
Meet his mother and son on the same trip
Undeterred by the prospect of spending two weeks in a hotel, Allison Young, 38, traveled in August from her home in Frederick County, Maryland, South Korea with her husband and three biological children. . She was returning both as an adopted and as a future adoptive mother.
The purpose of the trip was to adopt their fourth child, now almost 2 years old. Ms. Young and her husband had planned an extended stay to help their new son adjust to the family. But the weeks leading up to their custody at the end of September also gave Ms. Young a second try to meet her birth mother.
Two decades earlier, Ms. Young had studied abroad as a college student. She had reunited with her birth mother and scheduled a meeting, but two days earlier her mother had canceled.
“Soo Eun Lee, don’t cry,” her Korean social worker told Ms. Young, using her Korean name. “You have to understand Korean culture.” The stigma of single motherhood is at the root of many adoptions, which are also still viewed unfavorably. Her mother’s family did not know her – and still do not ignore her -.