18-Year-Old Meets Birth Parents for the First Time & the Story Is Heartbreaking

Kamiyah Mobley was kidnapped at birth and raised by another family for 18 years
ABC News

The love children have for their parents can truly be unconditional, but what happens when the person you've called and only known as Mom for all of your life isn't really your mother? Well, Kamiyah Mobley has had her world completely turned upside down, as the 18-year-old discovered she was kidnapped as a baby -- and recently met her birth parents (pictured with her above) for the very first time. 


Kamiyah Mobley, who was known as Alexis Manigo after she was taken as a baby, has finally been reunited with her birth parents after the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children reportedly located the 18-year-old through tips. And as wonderful as the thought of Mom and Dad wrapping their arms around their daughter is, I can't help but feel for this young girl and how her world -- and everything she knew to be true -- has been completely shattered.

Charles Manigo, the man who thought Kamiyah was his daughter, tells ABC News he had no idea that his former girlfriend, Gloria Williams, drove from South Carolina to Florida and took Kamiyah from a hospital maternity ward -- posing as a nurse -- back in 1998, as he was away during the time Gloria said she had their daughter. (News outlets report Gloria suffered a miscarriage before abducting the baby.) Gloria is currently behind bars and has been charged with kidnapping, and Charles must now cope with the fact that the child he loves and helped raise was never his.

More from CafeMom: Stolen Baby Cases Bring Out the Mama Bear in Me

"One of the hardest things she [Kamiyah] said ... was, 'Dad, I love you,' even though she knows what's going on," Charles told ABC News. "... I talk to her every day. She's still my child. I understand what's going on, but she's still my child."

Kamiyah has only known Gloria and Charles as her parents (after taking Kamiyah, Gloria had two kids, and all three were raised together), and to have that image shattered in such a way is just too heartbreaking to think about. As horrible and unimaginable as Gloria's crime was, Kamiyah still sees her as Mom and felt agony when Gloria was jailed. Scroll to the end of this video, in which Kamiyah reaches for Gloria behind bars. Just heartbreaking.

... Where do you even start with something like this? As a mother, I feel my heart break for this girl and the families involved.

More from CafeMom: Man Stolen From His Mother at Birth Finally Meets Her 41 Years Later

I can't even begin to imagine how Kamiyah's birth parents felt kissing their baby for the first time before she was taken from them, never to be seen again for 18 years. (ABC News says they still celebrated their daughter's birthday each year.) Although they'll have time to build a relationship, that's 18 years worth of firsts and milestones this mom and dad will never be able to witness or experience firsthand.

Yes, this story has a delayed happy ending, but also suffering and grief, too. No matter how you slice it, this situation is devastating on so many levels. 

Somehow, someway, I truly (truly) hope there is healing 

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