From the outside, everything about Ryan Jon’s life seems idyllic. He’s in his late 20s, working as a radio presenter and has a loving family. But every year around this time, he gets what he calls “a tricky conundrum” going on in his mind.
“I’ve never met my biological mother,” the Canberran says in a Facebook video released on Sunday. “I’m adopted. So every year around Mother’s Day I get this tricky conundrum going on in my mind.”
Watch: Ryan Jon’s message to his birth mother. Post continues…
Leaving him a note explaining her decision when he was born, Jon’s birth mother, Julie said she didn’t yet have the maturity or means to be a good mother. She wanted her son to have every opportunity, she said. And so she gave him up for adoption.
“It’s 2017, I’m almost 30, I’m really happy I’m here,” Jon says in his video, continuing, “I’m really happy to exist. My parents – who I now call Mum and Dad – were told they couldn’t be parents and now they are, so they’re really happy as well.”
Listen: Mothers talk about healing after forced adoptions. Post continues…
Jon says, “I’ve heard a lot of stories where women who have given up kids for adoption feel really guilty and sometimes it seems like a cowardly thing and sometimes in movies you see the kid finding out and being really upset, but as someone who was adopted, from my point of view it’s the total opposite. You’ve given someone the gift of life, you’ve sacrificed your body for someone who in 12 months you won’t even know.
“I’d love to be able to look my birth mother in they eye and just say how thankful I am.”
Watch: Ryan Jon’s message to his birth mother in full. Post continues…
Conflicted, Jon says that on one hand, he would love to know more about his birth mother, but on the other, he worries he may be looking for someone who doesn’t want to be found. He says he hopes Julie has married a nice person and gone on to have a family. That’s she’s living happily and without guilt around his adoption.
“I don’t want to be the skeleton in the closet,” he says. “She gave me my life and I feel like the least I can do is let her lives hers.
Tearing up throughout the three-minute-long video, Jon eventually addresses Julie directly, saying, “I don’t expect anything from you, I don’t need you to do anything or contact me, I just wanted to say thank you for everything and I hope you have a great Mother’s Day.”
In the 24 hours since going live, Jon’s video has been viewed nearly 500,000 times and shared by 7,000 people – and the numbers keep growing. It is not yet known if his birth mother has seen it.