Many people dream of becoming a parent someday, and while it’s definitely not right for everyone, many people who have had children say there is nothing more rewarding. Through all the trials and tribulations that raising a kid can bring along, there are plenty of moments that bring joy, too, from celebrating birthdays and graduations to first steps and family vacations. However, having a child can also force you to face unexpected obstacles as well. No one expects their child to become chronically ill, to have a disability, or to struggle with addiction, but all of this can and does happen. Similarly, no parent would ever expect their child to be kidnapped, but as rare as it is, many families have been through this horrific experience. We can’t imagine how scary it would be-it sounds like a nightmare. Here are 15 heartbreaking confessions from parents whose children have been kidnapped.
15 His Own Father
When we imagine how a kidnapping actually goes down, we usually picture strangers popping out of a sketchy white van or hiding in a dark alley and snatching a child when their parent isn’t looking. But usually when a child is kidnapped, the kidnapper is someone the child already knows. In this case, the child’s father took him away from his mother without her knowledge. In order to get her son back, she had to go through a difficult and expensive ordeal. All of the legal procedures ended up costing her over $100,000! She likely had to go into debt in order to get her son home. Almost any parent would say that this would be worth it to see their child returned safely, but that does not make the process easy. Losing a child is not just difficult emotionally. It is also extremely costly, as this mother has revealed.
14 This Is My Religion
Religion can be a touchy subject within families. Many people today are okay with marrying someone who does not share the same religion that they were raised in. However, this was definitely more taboo in older generations. Therefore, some parents may not feel as comfortable with it as their children are. Some will be able to get over it, and some won’t. Just look at what happened to the mother who wrote this confession. She was not a Christian, but their in-laws were, and they clearly took their religion very seriously. These in-laws took things way too far. They kidnapped their grandson from his mother simply because she was not a Christian as well, and therefore, they had decided that she would not be a good enough mother. This logic is completely backwards, because someone’s religion does not determine whether or not they will be a good parent at all.
13 Not So Innocent
Divorce can be a very messy ordeal. Obviously, everyone involved will struggle emotionally, from the couple getting divorced to their children to their relatives. It is not easy for anyone. Divorce can also bring out the absolute worst in people, especially when it comes to custody battles. Custody battles can truly turn into ugly messes. Decided who gets to see your children and on what days can feel awful. And it can be even worse when one parent refuses to cooperate or does not want to act in the best interest of the kids. In this case, this woman’s ex-husband did not win custody of their daughter and his response was to kidnap her. He then told their daughter that her mother had willingly given her up, and he made sure that everyone else thought that his side of the story was the truth. He doesn’t care about his daughter, just his reputation.
12 Not Even Your Own
Most of the kidnapping stories that make the news involve a child being kidnapped by a stranger. But as we explained earlier, most of the time a kidnapping is actually carried out by someone the child actually knows. And as you can see from some of the previous entries, many kidnappings are actually committed by one of the child’s parents! This is definitely not what the media teaches us about kidnappings, but sometimes, a parent can be more of a threat to a child than any scary stranger on the street. That is what happened in the case of this confession. This father’s ex kidnapped his son from his daycare. After that, she took him out of state with her. Now, she will not the let father see his son. Once again, this parent does not actually think about what is best for her child. She is only thinking about herself.
11 Still Have Hope
In the first few confessions that appeared on this list, no parent had it easy. However, they did either know where their child was, or eventually get them back. But not every story of a kidnapping ends this way. It is extremely upsetting, but sometimes, no one is able to find the lost child. They may have been killed, or they may simply have disappeared without a trace, and no one will ever know if they are alive or dead. The parent who wrote this confession stated that their son has now been missing for two years. After this much time has passed, the chances of the child returning home safely are very slim. In fact, if a child is not found in the first few days after a kidnapping, it is rare that they will be found at all. It’s understandable that this parent would feel unable to move on.
10 Cold Shoulder
When we see a kidnapping take place in a movie or TV show, or even read about it in a book, the character’s first course of action is usually to contact the authorities. Or if you’re Liam Neeson in Taken, you just take matters into your own hands and go rescue your child. But for the most part, it seems like the police will save the day if a child is kidnapped. Right? Well, not in the case of this parent. When a kidnapping occurs within a family, it seems like legal matters can become somewhat more complicated, and the police will not be able to do as much. In this case, a child’s grandmother was responsible for the kidnapping. However, the police will not step in to help. Perhaps this is because of a lack of evidence or another legal reason, but either way, the parent must feel helpless.
9 Nothing For Me To Do
When something tragic happens, many people feel so shocked and stunned that they are unable to do anything to help change the situation. Or they may literally be unable to do anything to fix it, the events going on may simply be outside of their control. When this happens, it is common to feel overwhelmed and hopeless. When we can’t take action to make our circumstances any better, we feel utterly useless. Why even bother hoping for a better day when we know that we can’t change anything on our own? That is how this parent feels. Their ex kidnapped their baby, and at only 5 months old, the child clearly has no idea what is going on. And the worst part is that they cannot do anything about it. They have to just sit and wait and hope that someday their child will be returned to them safe and sound.
8 Feeling Bad
As you have seen in the first few entries on this list, many of these kidnappings take place within families, they are not the result of “stranger danger” like it may seem on TV. This obviously complicates emotions further. If you were locked in a legal battle with a stranger, it would be much easier to feel nothing but anger and motivation towards getting your child back. You would not hesitate to press charges and do everything you could to have your child returned home. And there would be no reason for you to feel a hint of remorse about it. However, if you are stuck in this situation with a family member, things can get a bit messier. As this parent explained, their father was responsible for kidnapping their child. They had to take legal action to get their kid back, they had to go up against their own father, which was emotionally taxing.
7 Separation Anxiety
We think that babies basically have no clue what is going on in the world around them. Sure, their brains and their senses are still developing, and they may not be able to communicate with us, but everything that happens to them will still have a big impact on their lives. One of the most important things that babies need is contact with their parents. They need to be held and loved every single day, and this is very crucial to their healthy development. You might think that if something bad happened to a baby before they could actually remember it, that it might not have any lasting harm, but that is not the case. This parent’s daughter was kidnapped for three months when she was a baby. To this day, she experiences separation anxiety because she was kept apart from her parents at such a fragile time for her development.
6 Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
If it isn’t a family member who is responsible for a kidnapping, it is likely to be someone else who the child knows. It could be another relative, a family friend, a neighbor, or an acquaintance. In the case of the mother who wrote this confession, her husband’s crazy ex-girlfriend nearly managed to ruin their lives by kidnapping their son. If you have ever dated someone with a crazy ex who cannot seem to move on from the situation, you may be able to relate to some of these feelings, and you may have even worried about the ex harming you in some way. Well, even as adults, a crazy ex can really wreak havoc on your whole world. And we totally understand why this mother would want to teach this woman a lesson, after all, if you kidnap a kid, you pretty much deserve whatever bad things are coming to you.
5 Worst News
In all of the confessions that have appeared on this list so far, almost every single child was at least located, even if they were not returned to the parent. One other was never found, but it was never confirmed whether or not the child was killed. However, many children who are kidnapped and never found are, in fact, dead. This is extremely scary for anyone to think about, and for the parents who do have to go through this, their lives will simply never be the same. The parent who wrote this confession did not elaborate much on their experiences or emotions surrounding the kidnapping of their daughter, but they did not need to, anyone who reads it can already tell this must have been a horrible ordeal. No parent deserves to ever see something like this happen to their child, and every child deserves to be safe and secure.
4 You Are Not My Parents
This sounds like something that could be the plot of a suspenseful movie. You may have heard about hospitals mixing up babies before and sending them home with the wrong parents, but this happens so rarely that it is not a real concern. However, what if a child was sent home with the wrong parents on purpose? What if it wasn’t an innocent mistake on the doctor’s part, but a calculated move by a kidnapper in order to take a child? That’s what happened to the parents who wrote this confession. At only two days old, another couple managed to kidnap their daughter from the hospital! Luckily, they were able to get her back, but it seems like this process took a very long time. By the time she was returned home, she was convinced that the people who had stolen her from the hospital were her actual, biological parents.
3 It Doesn't Get Easier
We often think that dealing with grief gets easier as time goes on. After all, when you look at the five stages of grief, the final stage is “acceptance.” This means that whenever something horrible happens, we are eventually able to come to terms with the experience and move on with our lives, right? Well, maybe this is true for some people, but not for everyone. And even when it does pan out this way, acceptance takes time. It is certainly not a phase that you can reach overnight. For this parent, it is not a phase they will be reaching any time soon. They say that so far, the pain has only gotten worse with time, and they have certainly not been able to move on. After all, who is ever truly able to “accept” the loss of their child? It may get easier one day, but it will never be “easy.”
2 Put The Blame On Me
As a parent, you know that you are responsible for your child’s well-being. No one else is going to step in and take on the burden of keeping them safe, healthy, well fed, and comfortable. When you make the decision to become a parent, that is all up to you. And no matter how old your child gets, you will always have this feeling to an extent. Even once your child grows into an adult, you will still feel some sense of responsibility to them. You never stop being a parent. So when something bad happens to your child, it is easy to feel like it is all because of you. This parent confessed that after their child was kidnapped, they felt so horrible because they felt like it was all their fault. Any parent would feel this way, even if there was nothing they could have done to prevent it.
1 Birthday Wishes
Often, holidays are the hardest time of year for those of us who have lost a loved one. It is tough to feel like celebrating in the midst of grieving. Who really feels like decorating, buying presents, cooking a huge meal, and traveling when you are going through such a difficult time emotionally? Often after someone dies, the hardest days are the ones that you do not celebrate anymore, their birthday, year after year, can feel like a struggle to get through. This is definitely the case for the parent who wrote this confession. Their son was kidnapped four years ago, and at this point, the chances of him being found are very small. His birthday is the hardest day of the year for these parents. It is only natural that they would miss even more on this day and wonder who he could have grown up to be one day.