Am I required to tell a person that he was adopted?


I am in a situation where I know someone is adopted and that person does not know. This person is in his early-20s. The reason why this person didn’t find out about the adoption had nothing to do with what was in his best interest, in my opinion. I won’t say exactly why because this is a public board and I don’t want anyone to know who I am.

So, should I ever make an effort to let this person know? I’ve known this secret virtually all of my life, so it is not as if I really want to tell the person. I would be content with keeping this secret if it is what God wants. It is just something that I always wondered if I should ever do.


Not only are you not required to tell this person that he was adopted, I would go so far as to say that, ordinarily speaking, you are required not to tell this person he was adopted. From what you’ve told me, the circumstances of this person’s birth and adoption are not your concern and it is the adoptive parents’ prerogative to determine what is in their child’s best interest.

The only exception to this that I can foresee would be if you had firsthand knowledge – not secondhand, not hearsay, not gossip, not speculation – that this person was romantically involved with a close blood relation. Only if you were unable to inform the adoptive parents so that they could take the appropriate action – or if you were able to inform them and the adoptive parents were unwilling to inform their child – would there be reason to inform this person that he was accidentally involved in an incestuous relationship. Even then, it would be best to warn the parents of your moral obligation by saying something like, “It would be best if he learned of the close blood relationship to his girlfriend from you, but if you won’t tell him so that he can end the relationship, I feel it my moral duty to tell him myself,” and then give them another chance to inform their child.

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