Tina Bejarano was 17-years-old when she gave birth to her baby girl Kristin in Los Banos, California. Her mother initially told her she could not keep the baby and took it from her. Bejarano’s mother informed her that the child died just minutes following her birth. 29 years later, Bejarano has found that her daughter was alive after all and that she was now a man.
Bejarano and her husband Eric Gardere, whom she met soon after giving birth, continued to celebrate the baby’s birthday every year for 29 years, in solemn commemoration.
Shortly after Kristin’s Bejarano married Eric Gardere who has been supportive of her loss through the years. They have five children together. However, the pain from the child’s death refused to fade.
It was only after Bejarano got a DNA kit test done upon her daughter’s insistence in 2017 that she found out the truth about Kristin- her daughter Kristin had not died, but is alive and now a transgender man. Sometime after the test, she received an email from a man living in New Jersey who claimed she was his mother.
After nearly 30 years, when they finally reunited, Kristin informed Bejarano that she was raised in Las Vegas and that she had transitioned into a man. He also had a wife and a child. Bejarano accepted the change with glee, stating she did not care whether it was a boy or a girl as long as they were alive and reunited.
The family are sharing their story in order to encourage other families not to give up hope of reuniting with lost loved ones.