Legal Notice by Ruth B. Pace (nee Sippel) concerning Joan Mary Wheeler’s legal name change to Doris Michol Sippel May 12, 2016Posted by Ruth in Court Documents, legal notices, Our Family History.
I am letting this blog notice serve as notice that I, Ruth B. Pace (nee Sippel) do not recognize Doris Michol Sippel, formerly known as Joan Mary Wheeler as a legal member of the Sippel family. She is not my legal sister.
My father, Leonard J. Sippel removed Ms. Sippel/Wheeler from his formal obitiuary and self-written newspaper notification of his death. This was filed legally in the summer of 2009 by Leonard J. Sippel with his lawyer, and Amigone Funeral Homes of Buffalo, NY. His estate was settled and finalized a few months after his death in 2011.
Gert here…Anyone can change their name but that does NOT give any legal nor moral rights.
I agree with Ruth. No one will recognize her, what ever name she decides to use or not use. also so see this…https://gertmcqueen.wordpress.com/2011/08/27/death-notice-of-doris-sippel/
Ruth here – Right Gert. One of the things I received from the settling of my father’s estate after his death in 2011 was my mother’s bible. In the bible, were “family tree” pages.
My father made two entries in that bible on March 28, 1956. One was the death of my mother, Genevieve on March 28, 1956, and then recorded the death of Doris Michol Sippel, also on March 28, 1956.
He had known for some time that his wife was dying, and was already making plans for the infant. The day his wife died, to him, the infant died as well. He consulted his parish priest (before my mother’s funeral) and made his decisions. The infant was then adopted by Edward and Dorothy (aka Doloris) Wheeler, the adoption being finalized on January 14, 1957.
In 1974, the family was reunited with the now 18 year old person legally known as Joan Mary Wheeler. We all welcomed this person into our family. No legal papers were ever filed to the effect that Joan Mary Wheeler was a legal member of the Sippel family. On January 14, 1957, she became the legal daughter of the Wheelers. This is New York State law.
Several years before his death, my father made his final plans. He purchased burial plots for himself and his wife, my stepmother. He even wrote his own obituary that was to be printed in the newspaper.
In the summer of 2009, Joan Wheeler was at my father’s house and got into an argument with him, and cursed his Christian faith. (which she does frequently on various places on the internet). She also called my father a bastard to his face. My father’s generation view that word as meaning their parents were not married. My father took it as an insult and a slap in the face to the memory of his mother. He ordered Joan out of his house and life. Whereupon, he called his lawyer and Amigone Funeral Homes of Buffalo NY and crossed out the name Joan Mary Wheeler on his final papers. When my father died, the funeral director showed me and Gert the copy of the papers that he had, and we saw where Joan’s name was crossed out, with my father’s initials next to the deletes. (so much for Joan blaming me and Gert for the omission of her name in the newspaper notice).
So Joan Mary Wheeler can go around and call herself Doris Michol Sippel. I get that it means a great deal to her. But the law cannot be UNDONE. In order for Joan/Doris to be a legal member of the Sippel family would be for my father to legally to adopt her as his daughter. Since he’s dead, it ain’t gonna happen!
UPDATE SEPT 2016; as older posts are being seen I’m (Gert) updating with links to my second blog and a Facebook page wherein I expose AGAIN the lies, fabrications and hate that Joan M Wheeler (Doris Michol Sippel) says about me and family. The first book ‘Forbidden Family, A Half Orphan’s Account of Her Adoption, Reunion and Social Activism‘ was pulled from publication by the publisher in May 2011. Then in 2015, she ‘self-published’ a ‘revised’ version calling it ‘Forbidden Family, an adoptee duped by adoption’. This woman has no shame no sense of family honor! Then in 2016 Joan changed her name back to her birth name and rewrote and republished the SAME crap in another book; a Third edition! CALLED ‘Forbidden Family: An Adopted Woman’s Struggle for Identity’! Talk about conning people!
this blog’s title/sub title is… DUPED BY ADOPTION & AN WOMAN’S STRUGGLE FOR IDENTITY, A BOOK STUDY an in-depth analyzes of the books called Forbidden Family; My Life as an Adoptee Duped by adoption & An Adopted Woman’s Struggle for Identity by Joan M Wheeler/Doris M Sippel.
Thoughts on Joan Wheeler, how I viewed her as a child and an adult, how I view her in the present December 20, 2010Posted by Ruth in Joan Wheeler Speak - how Joan views the world, Joan Wheeler's abuse and harassment of her birth family, Lessons in Life, Our Family History, Refuting Joan Wheelers statements.
Tags: abuse, adoption, adoption reunion, blaming people for your own mess, Disrespect, emotional abuse, harassment of an adoptee's birth family, Lies, Refuting Joan Wheelers statements, whining
by Ruth Sippel Pace — Here’s a recent tidbit of wisdom from Joan
Post by: joanmw on November 06, 2010, 04:05:28 PM
I was found at age 18. In a split second I had the shock of my life and I had to decide how to handle it. How was I gonna be the only child of two adoptive parents and be the middle child of ten in my natural family and make it work with two sets of parents? For me, I told myself I have two sets of real parents and tried to please them both.
That was in the 1970s.
Today,, my real mother is the one who was pregnant with me and birthed me. She died when I was three months old. Her husband is my real father because, well, he is.
The fatehr who raised me is my adoptive father. The mother who raised me is my adoptive mother. She’s still alive and I call her Mom, but the destinction is real. She did not give birth to me and that’s a fact. She did parent me and so did my adoptive father.
I also have a step mother who is currently married to my real father.
All of these people are real and cannot be denied in their exsistance.
Does the term real parent mean “who do I love”? In different ways, I love all of them. But it isn’t a feel-good love. It is a sad, angry and grief-filled acknowldgement of what really happened.~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Joan says “It isn’t a feel-good love” – can’t Joan just accept the people around her for what they are – people? And love them for themselves? Isn’t that the friggin’ whine she keeps saying about herself? That people should love and accept her? Why does she have to label people and mete out feelings that are “supposed” to be about that label.
At the age of 54, Joan hasn’t yet learned that human beings are complicated? And are deserving of love and affection for themselves based on what they bring to your relationship.
Yes, we all have a familial love for our relatives. I’m not talking about that. I’m talking about the feelings we have with those with whom we have a relationship with.
I will use my stepmothers as an example. I was too young when my mother died to really understand what that meant. Shortly afterwards, my father married my first stepmother. Who had a bunch of problems of her own. My siblings didn’t get along with her. I did. I had a relationship with her. I loved her. She took care of me. Did things with me. I vividly remember her pushing me on the swing, playing with me, singing with me. I was a little kid. I adapted. This woman took care of me. Called me her daughter. Her mother called me her granddaughter. As I grew older, I began to realize that this woman was not my mother. She was my stepmother. My love for her did not diminish and I was genuinely upset when she died.
I was 18 when my father married again. I was old enough to accept this woman for who she was. A very nice woman. I was almost grown, didn’t need anyone to braid my hair anymore. Or teach me how to brush my teeth. Or wash behind my ears. But she did teach me other things. And I am eternally grateful to her. She became my friend. I will always love her for that. And yes, it is a “feel-good” love, because she’s been nice to me.
So getting back to Joan. And perhaps this history will clear up the mis-understanding and mis-labeling that we birth siblings of Joan are suffering from “separation anxiety” because she was taken away from us. I was 3 1/2 years old when my mother died. My brother was 5, Gert and Kathy were 8 and 9. There were no daycare centers in 1956, no welfare system, my dad had to go downtown to his job everyday to earn money for the rent and for groceries. (got that Joan?) Right after my mom died, I was living with my Uncle Mattie and Aunt Millie. I’m not sure where the others were. Then my dad married Josephine, and we all lived together. Well, not quite. It seems that Josephine had two sons. Her youngest, John, lived with us.Her oldest, Jimmy, lived with her mother. Why? Because Jimmy did not get along with my father. He was quite vocal about it. BUT he never disrespected any of us Sippel kids! I well remember his visits – he was just my big step-brother who didn’t live us, who lived with my Grandma Genovese and my Uncle Dominic and Aunt Helen, much like I used to live with Uncle Mattie and Aunt Millie.
When my stepmother showed signs of a nervous breakdown and went to the psych center, Gert and Kathy went to a foster home, me and my brothers to an orphan home for a year. Then we came home for a year. And I’m not sure why I was living with my paternal grandparents while I was in the first grade. My brother Butch was with me. But not Johnny. Nor Gert and Kathy. I was in the second grade at the orphan home and third grade when we all came home. Gert and Kathy stayed in the foster home. During the summer between my third and fourth grades, my stepmother flipped out again and I was sent to the same foster home as Gert and Kathy. The boys stayed with Dad, Jimmy was still with his grandmother.
So all this moving around, with one or two kids staying here, and other kids staying there, was quite NORMAL for us Sippel kids. The core group, Gert, Kathy, Butch, me, and Johnny all saw each other quite regularly. Jimmy, less regularly, but we knew he was around, and were pleased and excited when we did see him. Big step-brother Jimmy was aware of my fondness of art materials and always brought me play clay (not the Play-dough, but the better stuff), watercolors, brushes – stuff like that.
I don’t remember when I first aware that we had baby sister Doris laying around somewhere. And we wanted her with us. Why not? She was our sister. By the time I was 10 years old, I was quite aware of her, but she was “adopted” and her name had been changed. I didn’t quite understand that. By my mid-teens, I was fully aware of her status. I most certainly did NOT suffer from any sort of “separation anxiety” concerning Doris/Joan. MY separation anxiety problems stemmed from my being separted from my father. During my life, wherever I was living, whoever had custody of me, they always took good care of me, instilled good and proper moral values, and taught me skills. (Bible songs from Sunday School teacher Aunt Millie; some sort of embroidery from Josephine, hair care from my paternal grandmother, homemade spaghetti sauce from my grandmother Genovese, many skills from my foster parents, including gardening, pet care, rowing a boat and fishing!). Despite all this – I wanted to be with my daddy!
In the meantime, our Aunt Catherine had a photograph of Joan. It was given to her by her childhood friend, Helen, who’s brother Edward had adopted Joan. Contrary to Joan’s accusations of Aunt Catherine’s “stalking” her, (my god, how could she think of such a thing?), it was merely a photograph of the child of her dead sister’. Catherine was in the hospital giving birth to her last child Gail, (March 4) while in another part of the hospital, her sister lay dying, and died March28. Catherine had Doris/Joan’s photo out of LOVE and rememberance of her dead sister, and her last child, who was adopted out and indeed FORBIDDEN to us, Catheirne included. She was NOT “stalking”Joan, she had a momento of her. For god’s sake Joan, can’t you see that we all LOVED you and MISSED you? We didn’t STALK you, you idiot.
Catherine and Helen were childhood friends. Their children all knew each other. One day in 1966, Catherine and Helen took their kids to Crystal Beach Amusement Park. Well, what do you know? On the same day, Dorothy Wheeler had brought Joan to Crystal Beach. My cousin Gail saw Joan and was confused. This girl looked like me, but she wasn’t a Sippel. After the mothers finished talking, and Aunt Catherine got Gail alone, she told Gail who Joan was, and that we Sippel kids didn’t know who Joan was or where she was. And Gail was never to tell us. And she never did. So much for Joan’s insistence that she had been stalked “all her life” or “since she was 10 years old” by us. We couldn’t have – We didn’t know her name or where she was.
It was when I was 20 years old, (Joan was 16), when Gert approached me and told me that for years she had seen that photograph of Joan, and gradually became self-aware that the photo was that of our lost sister Doris. She asked Aunt Catherine what her name was. Catherine told her Joan Wheeler. But would not tell Gert where she lived. We found that out by me calling Wheelers in the phone book. And it was only ONE phone call placed to Joan’s home – she was not the subject of multiple stalking phone calls or prank letters, as Joan reports. And then we waited until she was 18 years old – legal age – to contact her.
As to Joan saying she was stalked by this contact – well I wish she would make up her mind! She has always maintained that as she became a teen and was aware that she was adopted, when she gained the “maturity” (and I say this loosely because she shows very little maturity, even now at the age of 54) – by the time she was 16, she made the conscience decision to find her birthparents. She didn’t know at the time she had siblings, but I guarantee if she had, they would have been included in her decision to find her birth family. – So much for her saying that she was traumatized by us finding her and we had “separation anxiety” – after she made that conscience decision to find her birth family – she wanted us as much as we wanted her.
So what happened when we found her? For myself, I was quite happy to have her back in my life. In 1974, I was in my first apartment, learning all the new things a new “adult” does. I was making my own decisions in my life, learning all about my new freedoms to come and go as I please, do what I want with my life and my time. Making my own mistakes and learning from them. And yes, that included my new relationship with Joan.
Gert said in a recent comment, “Ruth tried so many times to be a sister to Joan.” Yes, I did. Joan was raised as an only child. I was not. I came from a large family. Even if we Sippel siblings weren’t always with each other, we were with other kids. Aunt Catherine’s kids were particularly close to us. My cousin Gail was more like a sister to me. My first stepmother’s nephews and neice (David, Anthony, Gina, Perry) were close to me. Anthony was around the same age as me and Johnny, and we always played together). So I had experience in being a sister, or at least being close to someone!
And that is what I tried to be. To be close with Joan. I welcomed her back into my life with open arms. And she admits this in her book! I grew to love her. And I didn’t base my love on a wish that my dead mother would be sort of re-incarnated. No, I loved Joan for who and what she was. My sister. Who was funny, talented, creative, shared an interest in Ancent Egypt and Star Trek with me, shared an interest in mysticism with me. Liked many of the same songs and rock groups and actors as I did. Liked many of the same movies as I did. Some things about her I didn’t understand. But I would bet there were some things about me she didn’t understand. But no matter – we got along just fine. Joan said in her book that we were in a reunion and nobody knew how to proceed. What’s the big deal? I knew how to proceed! I just accepted her! If I had a day off from work and was free – I called her up and we went out to a movie or something. Isn’t that we all just simply do with anybody in our lives? Why must Joan make everything so dam difficult and see fucking problems where no problems exist? I had NO problem with Joan whatsoever. I loved her.
Well what the hell happened? Apparently, Joan didn’t love me at all. Because by 1981, we started seeing things in Joan we didn’t like. Her being opinionated for one thing. Let me rephrase that – her being DISRESPECTFUL is what I mean. She would give her opinion of a situation – and nobody was allowed to have an opposing viewpoint! If you disagreed with Joan, she would argue with you, and you ended up feeling belittled, like your opinion or viewpoint had no value. And that is wrong, wrong, wrong, because every human being on this planet has worth. Just because they disagree with you, does not give you the right to devalue them their basic human right to a free opinion!
It took a few years – but after a while, this devalue-ing (is that a word?) of me took it’s toll. I began to lose respect for Joan. By 1983, I had very little respect for her, but there was still love there. I gave her another chance. She hurt me again in 1987, I gave her another chance. In 1990, she out and out stole money from me. By that time, I could give her no more chances. Or so I thought. I tried again in 1992. Nope, I got kicked in the teeth again. And then her vendetta against me started for real – harassing letters, lies, July 4 and 5, 1992, she tried THREE times to get me in trouble with my husband! (that will be documented in due time). Then she started sending stalking letters to my house, greeting cards to my husband, but the envelopes addressed to me, false police reports, and on and on and on and on. Phone calls to my job to get me fired, trashing me to car repair people who knew me.
I sure want to know what the hell I did to Joan Wheeler that made her want to do all these rotten things to me! Then in 1999, she sends me a letter asking me why I don’t like her. No, by this time, I didn’t just not like her, I no longer loved her. And it was Joan herself who killed any love I ever had for her.
I said it before – our Doris is dead and gone. We are left with Monster Joan. I loved the Joan of the 70’s. The Joan of the 80’s, the 90’s, the 2000’s – she is deserving only of my contempt. And it is due to her own actions.
1. Gert – December 21, 2010
Well said Ruth!!!
“I most certainly did NOT suffer from any sort of “separation anxiety” concerning Doris/Joan. MY separation anxiety problems stemmed from my being separted from my father.”
I can state, with full knowledge that this statement is the truth, that from where both I and Kathy stand and from our deceased brother Butch. We, four children suffered through the loss due to death of a mother and several placements, some healthy, some not so healthy for many many years and not having our father there for us when we needed him, because he was always so busy with earning a living to support us all. During the 10 years I lived in a foster home I was ALWAYS packed because Daddy was coming to take me home the following weekend. Joan was never in my thoughts.
At various times in each of our lives we knew about Doris/Joan…I knew more and I remember more because I was the oldest…but at NO TIME did I ever suffer from being separated from her…Joan flatters herself too much…she was not and is not the center of my soul and life…as a child it was my FATHER, as an adult it is with my FATHER that I had to come to terms with regarding events of my life and those of and in my family…it NEVER WAS WITH JOAN.
“Apparently, Joan didn’t love me at all. Because by 1981, we started seeing things in Joan we didn’t like. Her being opinionated for one thing. Let me rephrase that – her being DISRESPECTFUL is what I mean. She would give her opinion of a situation – and nobody was allowed to have an opposing viewpoint! If you disagreed with Joan, she would argue with you, and you ended up feeling belittled, like your opinion or viewpoint had no value. And that is wrong, wrong, wrong, because every human being on this planet has worth. Just because they disagree with you, does not give you the right to devalue them their basic human right to a free opinion!”
And it was at that same time that Joan turned on me! I was to obey her views on adoption, when I told her to get lost and mind her own business, when I was adopting my own child, she TURNED on me.
She alienated my children from me, she interfered with my and my husband’s parental authority, she called me an unfit mother, called child abuse on me, took my daughter from me…and to this day…has the gall to think she was right and I was wrong, regardless to the fact that I own the paperwork that states my innocence!
Joan is very self-centered and thinks that she can write a untruthful account of everyone’s life and get away with it…NO…doesn’t work that way.
Joan gave us sisters the opportunity to tell the entire world what Joan has done, thank you Joan!
And we shall do just that…tell the world every thing that Joan has done…
2. chayelet – December 21, 2010
As for me, my way of dealing with those early traumas -mother’s death, placements and serious personality clashes with my father, was to move to the UK.I had made my decision as early as 1965, aged 17. I moved here in 1973 and have been too involved with building and sustaining my life here to be anything but a bystander in this whole reunion thing, and I made that quite clear to JW from the very start. Gert and Ruth speak about a time when JW TURNED against them.Both times it was when Ruth and/or Gert said NO to JW. Same with me. I saw from our very first days together that JW was a user but it was 1988 when her demands for a free ride on a 3rd visit were just a bit too intrusive. I did not ring her to tell her to stay home- she stayed home because her kids were sick (quite rightly) and common sense prevailed. But because I would not offer her free food and lodgings, her attitude toward me changed dramatically.
Certain ‘acquaintances’ in the UK had to terminate budding friendships with her because of her incessant phoning up at 3 am local time, asking for favours, etc. None of that had anything to do with me ‘bad-mouthing’ JW. She did it all by herself.
And now, with these few lines, I believe I have covered everything about me that JW has issues with, except for the Rene Hoksbergen incident circa 1992 to which Ruth and Gert have alluded in previous posts, and so there really, truly, and officially is nothing left for me to say on this subject.
3. gert – December 22, 2010
Well said Kathy!!!
It trully is amazing just how ‘far-fetched’ and ‘off base’ Joan’s understandings of any person/situation is! And the reasons for that is because it is always Joan’s inner mind that is always talking to her, that makes all her decisions for her about what any person was THINKING AND FEELING, instead of what ACTUALLY and TRULLY happened…and Joan wonders why people don’t understand her…no one is in Joan’s mind except Joan. Reality is NOT Joan’s mind!
And…we are NOT completely done with the subject of Hoksbergen, not by a long shot, we are not done…there is much much more coming out on that one…as there is so much more damage that Joan has to account for.
…all in good time, my pretty!! all in good time.
Steak or Hot Dogs? Joan Wheeler hasn’t a clue what the Sippel kids ate – and this has WHAT to do with her adoption? November 9, 2010Posted by Ruth in Joan Wheeler's abuse and harassment of her birth family, Lies in the book Forbidden Family, Our Family History, Refuting Joan Wheelers statements, Uncategorized.
Tags: adoption, adoption reform, adoption reunion, being downright stupid, Disrespect, embellishing the truth, faulty memory, harassment of an adoptee's birth family, passing assumptions off as truth, Refuting Joan Wheelers statements, spreading rumors, spreading untruths, stupidity, Urban Legends, whining
From Gert to Ruth:
I just had to address this issue, saw it late last night and stayed up late to do it….so unbelievable even though it is out of sequence I believe that it will serve a purpose… that she is no social worker…so Ruth if you can post this soon….
Joan Wheeler’s book is so full of nonsense it is an overwhelming bunch of garbage.
Taking a peek ahead into the depths of the craziness that Joan has written, I found something that just boggles my mind and felt the need to bring it up now. Chapter 38 is called ‘unequal treatment of 1 half-orphan out of 36 resulted in a traumatic life outcome – a Social Work Assessment’
It begins with ‘April – July 2009’ meaning of course she wrote it or massively rewrote it just before publication. It continues ‘this assessment is complicated to read, but necessary to understand’. I ask you what has Joan written that has been easy to understand? This entire chapter was an ‘afterthought’ of Joan’s so she could continue with her rants under the guise of ‘social work’. What a joke Joan is! Anyone with or without a degree can tell that Joan is nuts. This is the chapter that she says our father couldn’t understand, which btw caused him to say to others that it belonged in the trash! I’m not ready to comment on this chapter in full…in time it will be addressed…but there is one short paragraph that caught my eye.
Under a title of ‘known and unknown rumors against my natural father’ it defies reason has to what that title or what she has in it has to do with her adoption and how it was an ‘unequal treatment’ and how it resulted in a traumatic life for her, for she wasn’t there. It is Joan’s attempt to prove that her traumatic life is because of all the things she has put into this afterthought chapter.
Steak or Hot Dogs?
I can’t imagine how she can believe or devise these tales but as always she has to put her own spin on it. There are many outlandish tales cooked up by the adoptive family because they had some kind of weird idea about my parents and our economic circumstances and Joan has taken them to be ‘true’ and the reason why she is so traumatized. Bull Shit. Here then is one small paragraph that Joan has written on pg. 542 which caused her trauma! (Ruth’s note: how in God’s holy trouser’s could what we Sippel kids ate for supper when Joan wasn’t living with us caused her trauma is way beyond me!)
‘One story that has circulated for decades is that in the years before and after my birth and disappearance to adoption, my father fed my siblings hot dogs while he (and presumably my mother and then my siblings’ step-mother) ate steak. When I asked Dad about this, his explanation made sense to me since I, too, raised children. Parents do their best to provide quality food, but when children prefer to eat hot dogs because they taste better to kids, it is easier for parents to give in than to fight about dinner. There is also another explanation – that my father sent my brother to the Broadway Market to buy hot dogs for dinner. He took his time walking home, eating the uncooked hot dogs on the way. There was no dinner for the rest of the family.’ (Ruth’s note: this sentance makes no sense – it does not compute! – When she says that there was no dinner for the rest of the family – does she mean to imply that my father and mother (or stepmother) ate a steak dinner in front of us kids while we went hungry? HOW DARE YOU JOAN! We kids ate supper EVERY FUCKING EVENING! My father and mother/stepmother was responsible enough to make sure there was adequate groceries in our house for EVERYONE to eat. Not like JOAN and her ex-husband – in another section of her book she says that money was short that often HER kids had one meal a day. That’s a reflection of JOAN’S poor parenting and financial irresponsiblity! She couldn’t feed her kids? Yet she had money to zip around the place attending adoption conferences! Or going to rock concerts! But when money was short, and HER kids ate only one meal a day – did she get off her lazy ass and get even a part time job in the evenings at the Tops Supermarket one mile from her house? Before Joan starts painting the Sippel kids as deprived, she needs to take a close look at how she treated her own kids – like crap!)
This is pure hogwash! I haven’t a clue how she could possible believe such a tale and then put it in a book about her adoption! The basic true story was related from birth relative to adoptive relative and then turned into totally false-hood by the adoptive relatives for reasons of their own. But Joan NEVER researched the truth of the story and instead adds things on, that are of course not true and embellishes it with her own ‘time period’ thought patterns.
One can tell that it is another ‘Joan centric’ tale because she starts it out with her birth and ‘disappearance to adoption’ as if B.J. (before Joan) had some kind of great turning point in the way our family lived.
Here is the truth and beginning of the tale: My father was raised an only child after an elder brother died. His mother was very protective of him and of his health in particular. She always maintained that her son should have the iron in steak so that his blood was strong and he would not become weak like the son that she had lost. When my father and mother married, his mother would bring a steak to my mother, every week, telling her it was for her son. My mother, being a good daughter-in-law, thanked her mother-in-law and put the steak in the freezer till she had enough to feed the entire family. There is nothing more or less to the story, simply that my mother was no fool. She knew enough to keep her family fed with or without the additional weekly steak that her mother-in-law, my grandmother gave her.
Most of the time during and after my mother’s illness and death we children lived with or were taken care of by our grandparents. Then Dad remarried and his mother came again to her new daughter-in-law, my stepmother with the ‘steak’ for her son. This did not go over well with my stepmother and it was probably she who fed us other meat, again, because she was the wife and in charge of the household and kitchen, not my father.
What Joan tells in this tale is not true and it suffers greatly from total fabrications. She says that she asked Dad about this, well I have no way of knowing if that is true or not but it seems that even if he attempted to give an explanation of it that explanation was embellished by Joan. Dad is a guy and some guys just don’t think about how and what kind of food got on the table. Joan doesn’t think! In the 1950s the world was different, the husband gave the wife the ‘grocery money’ and that was that. So Dad did not feed his kids anything, his wife did! And he ate what was put in front of him!
Joan states, ‘Parents do their best to provide quality food, but when children prefer to eat hot dogs because they taste better to kids, it is easier for parents to give in than to fight about dinner.’ This is Joan’s inner mind working again, subjectively and certainly putting words into someone else’s mouth. This might have happened in Joan’s home with her adoptive parents and then with her children but it certainly didn’t happen in my father’s home. This statement is an editorial comment, has nothing to do with the story at all. Joan was NOT THERE, she would not KNOW that as a child, in my father’s household, if you didn’t eat what was put in front of you, you stayed there all night till you ate it and if you didn’t you had it for breakfast, or, you went without and went to bed hungry! (Ruth’s note: This is correct, not only in our house, but our grandmother’s house, and in the foster home that we were in for a few years. This is why I will not eat, to this day: oatmeal, lima beans or brussel sprouts. The women in our lives, our father’s mother, our step-mother, our step-grandmother and our foster mother, were strict. They did not cook a meal only to have a child waste it).
Here are some other very important facts that Joan does not know about. While there was the Broadway Market it was not in the neighbor and my father would never have sent my brother or any of us there to purchase anything. There was a local butcher within 4 blocks from home where we went for meat. Joan doesn’t know that because she wasn’t there and the adoptive relatives were not there! All she and they know is the Broadway Market!
Joan then continues saying about my brother that, ‘He took his time walking home, eating the uncooked hot dogs on the way. There was no dinner for the rest of the family.’ Again, made-up, sounds more like something The Beaver would have done, but not a real kid who was sent to the store to get something. If anyone of us did such a thing forget about dinner, which was called supper at our house, you would have been sent to bed with a ‘licking’. (Ruth’s note: again, the women in our lives were strict – we got a good smack on our backside when we misbehaved. Something more kids need in this world of kids AND adults not having any self-control or sense of self-responsibility).
Joan knows nothing about what happened in our family because she either wasn’t born yet or she was adopted out as an infant. (Ruth’s note: this sentence makes perfect sense to me – how the hell does Joan know what we Sippel kids ate for supper? SHE WASN’T THERE! I WAS! I KNOW WHAT WE ATE, WHAT WE DIDN’T EAT – AND HOW OUR FAMILY EXISTED! AND SO DOES GERT AND SO DOES KATHY – NOT JOAN. Joan keeps saying that her adoptive family, both her parents and the extended Wheeler family LIED to her about her adoption, and the existence of her siblings. How does she know that they weren’t also LYING to her about our family life? And how the hell do THEY know about it? THEY were NOT part of our family growing up! The only contact between the two families was my mother’s sister Catherine – and she raised her kids the same dam way – her husband always had liverwurst sausage in the fridge and limburger cheese – and NOBODY touched them! – and by god NOBODY touched Uncle Ray’s stuff! BUT, I ate dam well at Aunt Catherine’s house and I ate the same food that my cousins Norman, Ida and Gail had! – so this bullshit about what we Sippel kids ate came from the LYING WHEELERS! – And they sure taught Joan how to lie).
These tales are fabrications told to her by her adoptive parents and Joan hasn’t got the good sense to keep them out of print. She really ought to be ashamed of herself. She really ought to go after her adoptive relatives and leave the birth sisters alone.
(Ruth’s note: a competent social worker would know not to publish “urban legends” such as the steak/hotdogs or Butch eating hotdogs walking down the street. Better still, a COMPETENT social worker would get to the root of the “urban legend.” But since Joan DIDN’T bother to consider a family anecdote that sprang from either a faulty memory, or out-and-out LIES from her adoptive family, this clearly shows us that Joan is no dam social worker).
Addendum from Ruth:
I have already addressed this family anecdote about us Sippel kids eating hotdogs in my post Photos from the Past March 15, 2010. You have to scroll down to see what I wrote. But to save you the trouble here is what I wrote:
Joan also says on page 542 that our father fed kids hotdogs while he (and presumably my mother and then my siblings’ step-mother) ate steak. This is a family anecdote that Joan in her “brain fog” has gotten wrong.
What happened was this: my father’s mother was from the old-school, she would send over a steak every Friday for my dad. My mother, and then later my stepmother would say “thank you,” and put it in the freezer and the next week, another steak would come, and then we all would eat steak. and yes there were times that we kids would eat hotdogs.
As to the next “story” that my father sent my brother to the Broadway Market for hotdogs, and he ate them on the way home, leaving no dinner for the rest of the family, this makes no sense. Broadway Market was 2 and a half long blocks up Smith St. and then 5 short blocks over. There was Matty’s Deli right around the corner if we needed something in a hurry. Besides, there was Loblaw’s at the corner of William and Emslie only 5 blocks away and Joan was not there, I was. I went shopping every week with my stepmother. We had money for dinner people. come on. What Joan is doing is having “brain fog” in hearing another family anecdote that my brother was sent to the store and probably did eat the hotdogs. I WAS THERE, I HAD DINNER EVERY NIGHT, THANK YOU VERY MUCH! (Ruth’s note, November 8, 2010 – Gert is right – we did call it supper in our house. My husband John and I call it dinner in these present days of 2010).
And if we were so “poor” how come we had one cat, 2 parakeets, turtles, fish, Visible V8 Engine set, chemistry sets, build your own radio kits, a backyard gym/swing set, electric football game, kitchen sets with hoses to a bottle to supply running water, the first Easy Bake oven, Chatty Cathy dolls, Nancy dolls, Janet Lennon dolls, Elsie the Cow doll, some doll, if memory serves, The Breck Doll, sponsored by Breck shampoo, where you learned to style hair, and these weren’t Barbie doll sized, but big – their heads were at least 3 or 4 inches across! I had a Drink and Wet doll who was at least 15 inches long! The first Lite Brite sets. Sno-Cone set. I had a chair and desk set with reversible top – chalkboard on one side, artist easle on the other, paint by number sets, the original Cootie and Mr. Potato-Head.
AND we had our living room set from Ethan Allen furniture (NOT cheap) – colonial style! with a couch that opened to a bed. Colonial style rocking chair, coffee table (of which I had until the early 80’s), colonial style dining room furniture, of which I have TO THIS DAY, one of the chairs – it’s sitting four feet away from me right now! I vividly remember being with my step-mother and step-brother bringing home the living room lamps from downtown Buffalo, Hens and Kelley. AND if we were soooo poor, how come every week, my step-mother took me, my brother and stepbrother downtown to the movies, usually to see the new sci-fi, stuff like “The Cosmic Man” “Hypnotic Eye” “Attack of the 50 Foot Woman” “Invaders from Mars” “Darby O’Gill + the Little People.” We saw Fantasia, went to the circus, I vividly remember not liking the clowns and my stepmother holding me. And all the junk we brought home. I also vividly remember my stepmother taking ME alone to see the brand new Hayley Mills film, The Parent Trap. My brothers and I had Roy Rogers capgun sets, complete with belts, which my grandmother didn’t like. Rubber Jim Bowie knives, Davy Crockett hats. I had a Howdy Doody doll who came to the hospital with me when I had my tonsils taken out at 7 years old, where I threw a temper tantrum because they shut my tv off just as Chuck Connors The Rifleman came on! (I had to leave my rifle home, dad wouldn’t let me take it). All these brand new toys, and pets, but we were poor? I DON’T THINK SO!
(Ruth’s note, November 8, 2010: The Wheelers [but I suspect it all came from Mama Wheeler] thinks we Sippel kids were soooo poor. We came from the “inner city?” Oh yeah? Well, so did THEY! We lived on Smith St. They lived on Coit St. – ONE BLOCK OVER, TWO BLOCKS UP! So Dorothy/Doloris (yes, she goes by two names), take your suburbian snootiness and shove it – ‘cos you came from 3 blocks where we lived – THE INNER CITY!)
And pray tell: what does all this have to do with the supposed purpose of the book Forbidden Family – Joan’s adoption, Joan’s reunion with us and adoption reform? – ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!
Gert – November 9, 2010
‘And pray tell: what does all this have to do with the supposed purpose of the book Forbidden Family – Joan’s adoption, Joan’s reunion with us and adoption reform? – ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!’
True, absolutely nothing! Joan is totally against any form of adoption, because, she was adopted and her adoptive parents, lied to her, kept secrets from her, betrayed her and when she was ‘found’ by birth relatives, her adoptive family further betrayed, lied and harassed Joan for having a birth family. Nasty business for sure from the adoptive family, but hey, that is not the birth family’s blame.
Joan repeats, at nauseum, her tramatic life as a basis for adoption reform. NO! Joan’s life is what it is because of Joan, NOT adoption. It’s about time that Joan got out of the fog and get the hell over it! She was dealt a raw deal, well she isn’t the only one. She is suffering now because she CAN’T stand the fact that three birth sisters are finally able to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
Joan get a life before you find your self on your death bed all alone and wondering how you got there with no one!
This blog will continue to truth tell and refute everything in that book of garbage!
We Remember Our Baby Sister Doris January 18, 2010Posted by Ruth in Our Family History.
Tags: adoption, adoption reunion, false accusations, Lies
On my page “Our Family History of Adoption,” I tell the story of my mother’s death, my baby sister Doris’ relinquishment to adoption, my father’s remarriage, and our hard growing up. While we growing up, because of my oldest sister’s G.’s remembering of our baby sister, the rest of us kids always knew that we had a baby sister somewhere “out there.” Every January, G. would buy a doll and give it to my father, so he could give it to Doris for her birthday. She doesn’t remember exactly how many years she did this, but by the time she was 16, she had stopped.
When I was around 11 years old in the foster home, I received a new prayer book. This prayer book had printed on it’s inside back cover, a special page. There was a small prayer on top and a blank lines going down the page in a list form. This was where you wrote the name of a person that you wanted to say special prayers for. I had written on my list, assassinated American President John F. Kennedy, the first (and so far, only), Roman Catholic US President. President Kennedy was a big hero for American Catholics. My grandmother had a picture of him hanging up in her kitchen. Black folks have a picture of Martin Luther King on their walls, for Catholics, their hero was Kennedy. He was bigger than John Wayne “The Duke.” When Kennedy was killed, the nuns in my school were all crying. School was let out early. We were sent home. Some smart aleck kid asked Sister what homework should we do. She tearfully said, “Say a rosary for President Kennedy and a rosary for the First Lady.” I also had on my prayer list, Pope John the 23rd, who had died in June 1963, a few months before President Kennedy. I can’t remember all the names on my list, I probably had my father there. But I do know, that on the top of my list, I had written “Doris.” Then I drew a line from the end of her name, leading down to a space at the bottom of the page. I ended that line with an arrowhead, pointing to a phrase I had written. “So Daddy can adopt her back.”
Now if you read my post “Our Family History,” you have read how it was my mother’s sister Catherine and her childhood friend Helen (sister of Doris/Joan’s adoptive father), brought about the idea of Doris/Joan getting adopted. Because of the friendship between these two women, a picture of Joan, when she made her First Holy Communion was given to my Aunt Catherine. Joan says there was a conspiracy of lies and spying on her between the Wheelers and her birth family, and pictures of her were exchanged. There was one picture and ONLY one picture given to her birth family. But here is another example of Joan’s exaggerations and twisting of the truth. Anyway, growing up, my sisters and I would go over to Aunt Catherine’s house and in going thru her boxes of family photos, we saw this picture. In the picture, Joan looks remarkably like my oldest sister G. G. said she knew it wasn’t her, her hair was darker than Joan’s. She says she always suspected it was our lost little sister Doris. For myself, I was so dumb, that I would think it was G.
Now as I said, we never forgot our little sister. Particularly G. She kept questioning Aunt Catherine and finally got some information out of her. Sometime in the summer of 1972, I got a phone call from G. She was at her job at a downtown Buffalo dentist’s office. (Brisbane Building). It was a Tuesday, the dentist did not have patients in on Tuesdays, (and he himself wasn’t there), but the workers had to come in and do paperwork. I went downtown and to the office. Gert told me that the evening before, she had finally gotten out of Aunt Catherine, our little sister Doris’ adopted name. It was Joan Wheeler. But Aunt Catherine refused to give G. an address or any other information. G. asked me “how are we going to find her without her parents name?” I thought about it, and asked if there was a phone book around. I opened it up and went to the Wheeler listings. There were a lot of Wheelers. I asked G. if I could use the phone to make some phone calls. As the other woman working in the office was on her lunch break, and we were alone, G. told me to go ahead. I planned to make as many calls as I could while in the office, calling all the Wheelers listed in the phone book until I got to one that had a Joan living there. I hadn’t watched mystery movies without learning something.
I started making my calls. Those that had someone home told me I had the wrong number when I asked for Joan. When I got to the first names starting with E, I hit the jackpot. A girl answered the phone. I froze. I knew immediately I hit the motherlode. She sounded exactly like my second oldest sister K. But I had to be sure. I asked for Joan. She said “speaking.” “Joan, this is (I gave a fake name). Where were you at bowling last night? We figured you couldn’t get a babysitter so we just started without you.” The girl said, “what number did you want?” I repeated her number, but changed one of the digits. She said, “oh. No, you got the wrong number.” I apologized and hung up. G. who had heard all this was looking at me. I told her, “That’s her. She sounds exactly like K.” We wrote down the name and address listed in the phone call. Now we knew where our little sister was, and what her new name was. We knew we couldn’t do anything as she was under the age of 18. So we waited.
In early 1974, I was living back at my dad’s house, after 3 years of having my own apartment. In 1970, my father had met a nice woman and they got married in October 1970. She had two girls, aged 10 and 4, and the following year, they had a baby boy. In 1973, my stepmother wanted to go back to work. So I moved back home. I was working the night shift at my job (where I still am). My stepmother worked 3pm – 11pm. And my Dad still had his job at City Hall, but he was no longer working at Sears. With me moving back home, there was an adult present at all times to watch the girls and our baby brother. One day, G. and my older brother Butch came into my bedroom and woke me up. They told me that Doris/Joan’s 18th birthday had just passed. Should we contact her? It was unananimous. We would. We knew we couldn’t tell Dad. We didn’t know much about legal matters in adoption. But we knew enough to know that Dad couldn’t contact her. Now we just had to decide which one of us should contact Joan. I told G. and Butch that it should be G., because she was the oldest. And so she did.
Now I need to make some refutations about a couple of Joan Wheeler’s statements. After all, that is the purpose of this blog. In several of Joan’s writings, she says she was given up for adoption because she was “unwanted.” This is a lie. My father always wanted her. Her siblings, ME AND MY SISTERS AND BROTHER WANTED HER. Several other times Joan Wheeler has said that we, her sisters blame her for our mother’s death. HOW COULD WE BLAME HER FOR OUR MOTHER’S DEATH WHEN WE KNEW IT WAS CANCER THAT KILLED OUR MOTHER? And if we blamed her for our mother’s death, WHY DID WE ALWAYS REMEMBER HER? WHY WOULD G. TRY TO SEND HER DOLLS FOR HER BIRTHDAY IF WE BLAMED HER FOR OUR MOTHER’S DEATH? WHY WOULD I HAVE WRITTEN HER NAME IN MY PRAYER BOOK FOR PRAYERS AND WRITE “SO DADDY COULD ADOPT HER BACK?” WHY WOULD G. QUESTION OUR AUNT FOR INFORMATION LEADING US TO HER IF WE BLAMED HER FOR OUR MOTHER’S DEATH? WHY WOULD I GO THRU THE PHONE BOOK TO TRACK HER DOWN IF I BLAMED HER FOR MY MOTHER’S DEATH? WHY WOULD WE MAKE PLANS TO CALL HER AND GET HER BACK INTO OUR LIVES IF WE BLAMED HER FOR OUR MOTHER’S DEATH? But this is what Joan does. She lies. She has gotten herself in trouble with each and everyone of us. And instead of owning up to her contributions to our estrangement with her, she makes up stories to cover her own ass. And then she tells everyone what dysfunctional people her birth siblings are. On page 8 of her book Forbidden Family, she relates HER version of the phone call I made to her. She changes the facts. She says she got the call in the evening. WRONG! IT WAS AROUND ONE O’CLOCK IN THE AFTERNOON. She says the caller was obviously drunk. WRONG! I WAS NOT DRINKING IN THE MIDDLE OF THE AFTERNOON. She says the call ended with stupid laughter. WRONG! WHEN I CHANGED THE DIGITS OF HER PHONE NUMBER, AND SHE TOLD ME I HAD THE WRONG PHONE NUMBER, I APOLOGIZED AND HUNG UP. This was a serious attempt to find my lost baby sister. I was calling all the Wheelers in the phone book to find my lost baby sister. I would not be doing this thing while drunk and ending such a serious call with stupid laughter. This labeling of me as “drunk” is another of Joan’s attempts to smear my character. I first read this lie in a 1997 manuscript of her book. And it was at the height of her troublemaking against me. And as I said before, she will not own up to HER contributions to her birth siblings not wanting her in their lives. She will not accept responsiblity for her own actions, so to cover her own ass, she will tell people how important she is, how educated she is, how smart she is. And then spread lies about her birth siblings, like they are dysfunctional, they are drunks, they are jealous of her, they blame her for their mother’s death and blah blah blah.
So I ask you blog readers, those who know Joan, those of you in the adoption reform community, what nice things has she said about her birth siblings? I bet she has filled all your heads with horror stories of how evil and jealous we are. How empty our lives are. And that we hate her and hate her children. ALL LIES AND MISCONCEPTIONS FROM JOAN WHEELER, WHO CONSTANTLY GIVES OUT HER TWISTED VERSION OF THINGS. But didn’t she herself just leave comments on that recent story (November 2009) on ABC News.com about adoption that the reporter twisted her words, and she always had problems with reporters giving their twisted version of what she had said. But this is exactly what Joan does. I have told you about the phone call I made to find her. IT WAS IN THE AFTERNOON, AND I WAS NOT DRUNK, I DID NOT END THE CALL WITH STUPID LAUGHING. I swear to you blog readers on the soul of my son, who I miscarried in June 1985, that I have told you the truth about that phone call. But Joan wants you to read a twisted version of what happened: HER TWISTED VERSION. HER LIE OF WHAT REALLY HAPPENED. In fact, a couple of years ago, someone close to Joan told me that she (Joan) “…is crafty at twisting words.”