Bringing Together Long-Lost Family Members for Thanksgiving

After Jennifer wrote about how excited she was to connect with family last year, we thought to ourselves, “what better time than Thanksgiving to reconnect with family members?” Whether you’ve lost touch with loved ones through distance, arguments, or even lost contact information, this is the year you can bring your family together once and for all.

Imagine the look on your mom’s face when her estranged sister walks in with a pumpkin pie. Maybe your dad’s been aching to reconnect with a cousin he lost touch with after he moved during childhood. Finding loved ones is easier than ever before with advanced technology and people search engines like Spokeo aiding your search.

There are lots of dynamics that can lead to a fractured family. A few of the most common include:

  •         Divorce or breakups
  •         Moving to a new city, new state, or new country
  •         Disagreements that lead people to lose track of each other
  •         Military service or other job-related moves
  •         Adoptions into another family

The good news is it’s easier than you might think to overcome these hurdles. First and foremost, you need to decide whether it’s a positive thing to reconnect with estranged family members. What led to the estrangement, and has it been resolved? Thanksgiving may not be the best time to throw two or more people together who still have deep-seeded issues to work out, particularly without notice. If the distance has been caused by a disagreement, a physical altercation, or something more serious think long and hard about how to broach communication: phone or email may be the best start.

If your family member is still very much loved and wanted but their whereabouts unknown, start online. Using a people search engine like Spokeo is the fastest way to compile the information you need to find someone, and you’ll likely only need their name to get started. Have an old address, an online username, or even a state they once lived in? That helps too. People searches work by scanning thousands of publicly available records to give you a full picture of someone’s history and hopefully their current contact information which may be all you need to start communicating.

Publicly available data like marriage licenses, real estate records, and even DMV records are all helpful in piecing together someone’s path. Resources like these can be particularly useful for tracking down someone lost track of in childhood, before the internet existed. They’re also a huge help for locating military comrades and adopted children or parents.

If your family feels incomplete without a special someone, why not make this the year you help make it whole? Whether it’s your sister’s birth mother, your grandfather’s Navy bunkmate, or your dad’s once-homeless brother, what have you got to lose? Thanksgiving is the perfect time to show your loved ones you care by doing your very best to bring everyone together. And if you do well enough you may get to count your efforts towards everyone’s holiday presents, too!

Looking for someone?

See what Spokeo can help you find.