life of a teenage adoptee: love trumps blood edition

When my parents settled down after getting married, the decision to start a family was not a question in their mind. They wanted children, a house, a dog, and any other typical aspects of a happy family. Unfortunately, my mom was told she was unable to have children. My parents were devastated but looked into other options. Adoption was their first, and final, choice (other possibilities at the time included genetic mutation, genetic cloning and illegal child abduction; all of which were vetoed).

My brother, Peter, was the first shipped over from Seoul, South Korea. Later the next year, I too had gotten on a plane from Seoul and arrived in my parent’s arms. Peter and I were only six months old, so the memories of those eventful days are non-existent. And no, my brother and I are not biologically related. Many people try to tell me that we are blood related, but I can assure you that we were just two strangers who happened to come from the same city halfway across the world to be adopted by the same people. Simple as that. After our arrivals, all of our lives changed forever. We moved into a new house (with our dog) and started our family.

When I was 5 years old and, my mom announced she was pregnant. Now looking back, that must have been one heck of a surprise to my parents if my they didn’t even think my mom could have children. But sure enough, on January 1, 2004, Julia was brought into our family.

The 5+ year age gap between all of us has always been a hurdle, especially after Julia had gotten out of the “cute baby” phase. My parents to this day wonder why us getting along is a struggle, but if you think about it, we, genetically speaking, are all from different people who had different interests, backgrounds, etc. Forget the United States, our family alone is a melting pot. Sure we all grew up under one roof and had the same parents, but that does not guarantee (and it has proven to not guarantee) that we are always on the same page. Personality clashes and different thought processes 99.9% of the time are the root of our futile disagreements.

Nature vs. Nurture: Where do social graces and personality fall under?

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