Looking for her roots

Looking for her roots

It was an innocent question from her daughter which spurred Madam Goh Kim Noi's search for her biological mother.

"My daughter, who is in her 20s, asked me about three years ago if I wanted to look for my parents and get to know my roots, and my dialect," says the 49-year-old, who was born to Chinese parents, but given away to an Indian couple.

Her adoptive parents have died.

Aside from her husband and children, she did not tell anyone else about the reunion she had with her birth mother in April last year.

"I don't want my brother to think that I've gone in search of my biological family and that I don't treasure my adoptive parents any more," she explains.

Madam Goh, who is married with two children, says she was very close to her adoptive mother and would not have searched for her biological family if not for her daughter's curiosity.

She visited the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority hoping to get information about her biological family, but they told her that they could not disclose anything due to laws here, which state that details of an adoption cannot be revealed without a court order.

Madam Goh filed an appeal with the courts, which later yielded the names of her parents. She also put out advertisements in The New Paper and Lianhe Wanbao to look for her family, but failed to get a response.

In the end, it was a friend who provided the lead which put her in touch with her biological sister, who arranged for a meeting between Madam Goh and their mother the same evening.

"It was about a week before Easter, I remember.

"My sister told me that my mother was very anxious to meet me, whether or not I was eventually the correct person," she says.

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