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Celebrities You Never Knew Were Adopted – Part I

The Adoption Network estimates that 100 million Americans have experience with adoption in their immediate family, while the US Census claims that 4% of families in America have adopted children. You may know someone who was or has adopted. Obviously, celebrities are also part of such statistics. From Bill Clinton to Marilyn Monroe, many iconic figures were adopted by non-biological parents.

Jack Nicholson was shocked to learn that his mother was actually his grandmother and his sister was his biological mother, aged  17 when she had him; she requested her parents to raise Jack as their own which they did, with Jack realizing the truth at 37, a decade after both passed away. The potentially life-altering revelation was a dramatic but not traumatizing event,. He actually felt grateful and found clarity about personal issues.

The California foster care system looked after Marilyn Monroe as her birth mother was mentally ill, and her father had vanished, leaving her to foster care and orphanages until she was 11. Several families wanted to adopt her, but her mother refused and she lived with her mother’s BFF, Grace, and later, her with her great-aunt Olive. When she was 16, she married James Dougherty, her 21-year-old neighbor.

Steve Jobs never actually met his unmarried birth parents, Syrian immigrant Abdulfattah Jandali and Joanne Schieble, as Schieble’s parents disapproved of their relationship. She secretly gave birth to Jobs in San Francisco, where Clara and Paul Jobs adopted him. At 27, Jobs got to know that he has a biological sister, Mona Simpson, as Schieble and Jandali later married and had a daughter two years after giving him away. The siblings were close, with Jobs calling her as one of his best friends in the world. However, he never met his biological parents, considering the Jobs’ as his real parents.

Actress Frances McDormand was just one when adopted by a pastor, Vernon McDonald and his wife Noreen who had fostered nine other children, but adopted only three. Vernon was an influential figure at Disciples of Christ, and set a strict “moral barometer” for his kids. Frances and husband Joel Coen, one of the Coen Brothers fame, also adopted their six month old son in 1995 from Paraguay and named him Pedro.

Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi was not born in the US, and was actually born in Chile and was lated adopted by Italian American couple Andy and Helen Polizzi, when she was only 6 months old. She appeared on Kocktails with Khloe and spoke about her birth parents, after finding out she had 10 brothers and sisters, and they possibly couldn’t afford her but she could travel to Chile to meet them.

Jamie Foxx, was born Eric Bishop, but was adopted by his maternal grandparents before he was a year old, after his parents’ marriage shattered. The actor while hosting the show “Beat Shazam,” became emotional when conversing with contestants about his adoption.

Fashion designer Nicole Richie was unofficially adopted by singer Lionel Richie and his wife Brenda since she was only four, and completed legal adoption formalities when she turned nine. Her parents, Peter Escovedo and Karen Moss were friends of the Richies, and had financial issues when the singer offered to adopt their daughter.

Bill Clinton was adopted by his stepfather Roger Clinton after William Blythe, his birth father passed away in a car accident, just three months before Bill was born. Clinton took his stepfather’s last name when he was a teen.

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