I admit to
My mother's family is large and close, by most standards. We know a great deal about our ancestry. On the other hand, I have never met anyone related to my father, and I know little more than his place of birth and parents' names.
I am wrestling with contacting someone that might not know I even exist. My father was one that left his hometown in the rear-view and never looked back. My parents were only married a short time, and my dad died young, well before I was of an age to pose any probing questions or seek information about the family he never willingly spoke of. I never knew my paternal grandparents, and until recently, had never even seen a photograph of them.
I found, through the magic of the Gorenet and Facebook, several members of my father's family - and, among their internet footprint, photos of grandparents, aunts & uncles, my father's childhood home, and the business my grandparents ran in my father's hometown.
I do not have some deep need to connect with his family, but it would be nice to hear anecdotes about my father's childhood and learn more about the family he never spoke of, instead of just seeing pictures on internet and wondering about the stories behind them.
Unless they are crackpots.
I mean, I could open a Pandora's box. I know, from my mother's single trip to meet the family, that there are (or were) some colorful characters in my father's family. Think Appalachian-dwelling folks that would give a hot and thirsty pregnant woman a Mason jar of moonshine, presenting it to her as water, and then cackling like hens when she downed it and then couldn't breathe for 5 minutes.
I could be inviting trouble by connecting with people that my father chose to leave behind. Or, I could miss out on knowing part of my own history by doing nothing.