Song: RISK! Theme by Wormburner and John Sondericker
Song: Chasin’ Kendall by Stefon Harris & Blackout
Live Story: Honey420 and Me by Oz
Interstitial: The Scent and Taste of a Real Woman by Ceara
Live Story: Dave’s Not Here by Vara Cooper
Song: Waiting on a Friend by The Rolling Stones
Live Story: Reunion by Britt Adams
Song: Who Did That to You? by John Legend
Final Word: When You Spread Your Legs on the Internet as Often as I Do by Casey Calvert
Britt- wow. Thank you for sharing. You have a tremendous spirit.
I just listened to the story by Britt Adams. He sounds like an amazing young man and I would be proud to have him for a son. His story breaks my heart. I have a Vietnamese son and a Chinese daughter and I would never let anyone treat them the way Britt’s family treated him. (I didn’t vote for trump either) Chin up Britt!
Was Britt Adams story true? I would like to hear if he has more to say.
RISK! is the show where people tell true stories they never thought they’d dare to share.
Some RISK! storytellers go by pseudonyms or change the names of other people or institutions in their stories, but what happens in the story is based on their interpretations of their own life experiences.
I know that there are many factors that could lead to this…but why would a family adopt a vietnamese son and not project him from that sort of prejudice?
It baffles my mind.
I too was absolutely gobsmacked by Britt’s story and came straight here to comment. If you read this, Britt, you’re a very brave, positive person and I’m certain you’ll find the wonderful friends and adoptive family that you deserve. Your story is one of the most remarkable I’ve ever heard, and you’ll be in my thoughts for a long time.
Risk hosts a range of naughty, hilarious, and emotional stories that I’ve loved since I started listening 2 years ago, but Britt’s is the first one that made me cry. Britt, you sound like a funny, smart and resilient person and any family should be proud they raised a son like you. I’m sure you’ll meet a bunch of amazing people in Denver that will value you for the incredible person you are. <3
Britt, if you read this, I was also completely betrayed by my family, and I have spent years trying to get past it with limited success. I really wish you the strength and curiosity it will entail for you to realize your own worth without them. From what you described you are so much better than them. Best of luck.
As an Asian American listener, Britt’s story absolutely shook me. Britt, you are a brave soul and wonderful storyteller. I wish you all the best in Denver and hope that you soon find the familial love and friendship that you deserve.
I not one to leave comments but Bitt’s story, JESUS!! WTF!!. Britt, my prayer for you will be that you create your own loving & caring family among the community that you live in. As 60 yr’so old black woman I will always remember your story and thus I will always keep you, my son, in my prayers. Keep your head up & stay strong.
I was all set to get all gushy fanboy forOz’s story, but I’m glad i held off. Hat’s off to Kevin for curating the best Risk! in ages. This episode started “excellent” and them got steadily better. Britt, of you ever make it to Baltimore, the first beer’s on me. I’ve experienced a similar awakening but on a vastly smaller scale. Thanks also to Vara your story was just as touching as the others, just in different places.
Gushy fanboy? 🙂
I’m glad you appreciated the story.
Dear Britt, please know that many more people are estranged from their families that you’d otherwise think! I advise to relish what good memories you have and make your own new tribe. Share your story judiciously with those who’ve gained your trust. But BEWARE some will try to downplay, explain away or rename what happened while others will try to gaslight you into thinking you misinterpreted. Stop them early and consider current events and long ago history: racism and the tenets of white supremacy insinuate themselves into every aspect of the human experience (even adoption) all the while insisting upon its innocence or calling itself something else. That’s how it survives and mutates around the globe.
Britt, what a shattering experience you went through. Don’t lose hope, there are people out there that will love you for whoever you are, no matter who you vote for, your race, etc. Those that hurt you are missing a piece of humanity. I pray that they realize the error in their ways, and that you can move on and stay strong.
I am so sorry you had that experience. I couldn’t even imagine. My heart breaks for you. I could always use a friend. Hit me on Facebook or the gram.
Britt, I want you to know you are a Wonderful young man and if that is how your family treats you, they are opposite of what it means to be a family. Do not let anyone including them define who you are! Stand strong in your beliefs always. May success and abundance surround you and endless love be your comfort. For every hurt you have experienced may you be filled with joy!!
Britt, I’m so sorry that you had to find out that your ‘family’ was not a normal family, in such a violent way. This is not how a normal family acts. I have an adopted Chinese child & I can’t imagine letting anyone treat her different or unfairly. Same for the larger adoptive community that I am a part of. I know you will do better at creating your own family of friends. I’m so glad you got out. I wish you happier times!
As an immigrant myself, I wanna thank Britt for that story. I run into a lot of people who’s parents aren’t very parentally. Sometimes its the low points in our lives that fill the well from which we gather our strength in the future. I’m glad you are seeking out your own path. Time will be the best judge.
I was listening to my first podcast of Risk! and was astonished and angry and sad about Britt’s story. I told my husband about it when I got home. Sharing his story is hopefully part of his journey to heal his emotional wounds from those people. I’m disgusted to my core. Best wishes to Britt and all others who have suffered such injustices. I wanted to reach out through my car stereo to give him big hugs. Thank you. ~ Magdalena
Britt’s story is insane. It’s really hard for me to believe that a family would purposely – for significant amounts of money – adopt outside of their race/ethnicity and then purposely belittle that person, however subtle or encoded, for their entire life. And then what happened at the family reunion?!! What?! For me, it was one of the most unbelievable stories – literally – I’ve ever heard on Risk. If it is really true, stay strong Britt, the West is the best.
of all the gut wrenching stories, this one lingers.
an unimaginable betrayal, the shocking brutality of a “family”.
the visual of a child being thrown into a tv, severely beaten AND abandoned at a hospital made me cry.
yet, Britt maintains hope, optimism, a positive outlook and even joy.
what a loss Brit is to his “family”, a shame.
i can’t imagine his mother not suffering her loss but doesn’t express it in fear of her husband.
a story i would like to follow.
I listened to Britt’s story with horror and growing anger. Any person that puts their child or brother in the hospital deserves to be in jail, and anyone who doesn’t lift a finger to stop the violence deserves to join them. My heart goes out to him and I hope he finds the family he deserves. And I hope his adoptive “family” rot in hell.
Britt, just because you were raised in one family, that does not prevent you from creating a family that better suits you. My wife was born to two people who should not have had children, but she ended up creating her own family made up of people who love and support her. The people she calls her parents are an important part of her life and also in our children’s lives. Although we now live on opposite sides of the country from her parents, we see them several times a year and vacation together. We still have typical family disagreements, but they are resolved quickly and with love. Find a family who appreciates you. There are people out there who would love to have you as part of their family.
Britt your story had me sobbing so hard I immediately tried to find you on Facebook or Instagram so I could tell you myself how heartbreaking your story was for me. You are an amazing person who doesn’t Deserve this pain and your “family” isn’t worthy of you. Please please please remember that. It may be a long journey to make sense of all this you’ve dealt with for so long, my only advice is practice self love wherever possible and surround yourself with loving people to combat the disgusting constant racism you’ve faced:( And feel free to reach out anytime, I’d be lucky to have a person as amazing as you as a friend.
I agree with an earlier comment that Britt’s story is very hard to believe. I would say that it is totally fiction. Who would seriously believe that a close family would beat the hell out of their kid and brother because of a political belief? Sounds like someone had an agenda.
I can’t find any info on Britt Adams. Can someone link their site? Is the story mis-attributed?
See Comment #4.
Wow, how lucky for some of these commenters to be in disbelief that a family would treat their child the way Britt’s treated him. People are abused everyday by the people closest to them…and for less contentious or polarizing reasons than politics.
Britt, your story was so powerful. I wish you healing and hope that you are able to find joy and love in the chosen family you will build for yourself. I also second what Natalie said in comment #13. People will try to minimize or explain-away your experience…see it for what it is when they do. You know your truth. Thank you for sharing <3
I am a devout RISK listener. As a strong liberal from a very liberal town that has hosted many escapees from terrible circumstances, I have heard many stories from many people about betrayals and abuses. I can confirm that some truly astonishing acts have been committed by members of people’s own families. All that said, I also found myself doubting the truth of this story. I feel terrible saying that, because it probably IS true. I have been asking myself what made me feel the way I have and I thought I would share this to perhaps help others process their reactions to the story.
In no particular order:
1) His delivery seemed too deliberate. Carefully timed inhalations. Carefully articulated words. We all have an intuitive sense when we hear something that doesn’t seem to be from the heart and that sense was triggered for me. BUT this is no kind of proof. The tendency to disbelieve because a story sounds too well rehearsed and told too calmly has led to incorrect judgements in criminal cases, particularly in rape cases. We have to be careful as listeners not to fall into this trap. Imagine you had been through something incredibly difficult. It could be incredibly difficult to talk about it. You might need a lot of help. You might need to follow a structure, to be very formulaic. You might need to distance yourself from the intensity of the feelings in order to get the words across clearly.
2) It sounds like a very carefully crafted anti-Trump message. It’s hard to imagine a more stereotyped description of a group of big bad Trump supporters. People who are racist against their own adopted child. People who beat a family member into the hospital and never talk to them again. And not just one or two bad apples, an entire tribe of them! Nobody being even slightly sensible! Okay, but AGAIN.. this isn’t any kind of proof that the story isn’t true. I personally have a lot more faith in the average Trump supporter. I think very few of them would actually behave like this. But that doesn’t mean that Britt’s family didn’t. There is a bell curve. Someone has to be on the end of it.
3) I have struggled with reconciling the fact of Britt’s adoption and his positive anticipation of seeing his family again with how they treated him. As others have noted, this just doesn’t seem to add up. BUT a) people change. Years had gone by. Brett may have changed when he went to college. The family may have changed due to various circumstances, including the change in political climate. b) alcohol can really change people’s behavior. c) People can get weird when they get “tribal”. Perhaps a perfect storm of circumstances led to people getting out of hand, and once the crime was done, they had no ability to admit or even acknowledge it to themselves, so they wished it, and Brett, away.
4) Lastly, I was initially surprised that he said nothing about either criminal charges nor suing his family. Well, this can be incredibly hard for victims. It exposes them to further engagement with their abusers. It can drag on for a long time and be very psychologically and physically scary and even dangerous. Many victims do not take action for these reasons.
Conclusion: It takes a lot for someone to stand up in front of a lot of people, in front of a vast virtual audience in fact, and tell a story like this. A story that many people that know him could very likely disprove were it to be false. So I choose to believe him.
And that makes me really really sad. 🙁
Just to let folks know, we get to know the storytellers who share on RISK! a bit before they appear on a live show — especially on our tour dates. A storyteller will usually go through about three rounds of answering lots of questions about their story, with at least two different story coaches. Here and there, some storytellers might employ what Matthew Dicks christened “the Four Lies of Storytelling” — superficial, inconsequential fudges of nitty-gritty accuracy to keep the story moving and making emotional sense — but major fabrications are the sort of thing we’re on guard for when we put people through our extensive workshopping process. We’re not detectives or journalists. We don’t have a fact checking team. But our intention is that the stories we’re podcasting are true. – Kevin
Britt if you ever make it to Portland or want to meet a good group of people to make some new friends in Colorado shoot me an email and I’ll get you their info
Ask site admin for my email addy.
Your story was amazing. And heartbreaking. As a little southern gay boy I grew up seeing the ugly face of prejudice. I’m sorry the family that adopted you sucks but family isn’t who you share blood with its who you share your time with. Sounds like you are on to bigger and better things. I wouldn’t visit family again without protection. Honestly. You could have died. Be careful. Be with the people who actually love you. Good luck man.