My name is Daniel Rose. I am adopted.

Daniel Rose

Look at me and what do you see?

You’d see a man with a cause. A great family. Fantastic friends. A loving wife.

But for a long time I was deprived of the love and support I have today.

You see, I was only 12 months old when police found me wandering the streets of Seoul. Barely walking. All alone.

With no known parents or relatives to speak of, I spent the next few years in an orphanage – weighed down by so much uncertainty…

Who am I?

Where did I come from?

Why didn’t my family want me?

Even moving to a foster home offered no solace. My foster brother was violent and abusive – which compounded my loneliness and riddled me with fear and anxiety.

The lonely streets. The orphanage. The foster home. These became my only memories of Korea.

But in 1988 – at six years old – my luck changed.

I was adopted. I finally had a family. And I would be moving to Australia to be with them.

I spent the rest of my childhood in rural Victoria surrounded by loving parents, extended family and lots of friends. But it wasn’t the happy ending you might have imagined. I struggled to adapt to the Australian culture and way of life.

And those relentless unanswered questions continued to plague me…

Who am I?

Where did I come from?

Why didn’t my family want me?

I suffered from depression and feelings of worthlessness throughout my late teens and early 20s. I self-harmed and fantasised about suicide daily. Anything to avoid the unbearable emotional pain.

But I was lucky compared to so many others. I had a place to call home – and I had people who genuinely loved me. Thanks to their unconditional love and support, as well as extensive counselling, I finally overcame my battles.

It took six years to find a home and many thereafter to adapt to it. But I made it in the end.

As someone who has experienced the repercussions of neglect and abandonment intensely, I know that adoption is so much more than just losing a home. It’s also about the deep grief, loss and feelings of isolation that follow.

That’s why I created ‘Adoption Talk’. I hope the tools, resources and shared stories here can give you and your loved ones the support and solace you need.

You’re not alone.