At 23 years old, Nejdra Nance learned that the woman she had called Mom her entire life may have actually been her kidnapper. Nance — born Carlina White — disappeared from Harlem Hospital in 1987 and was recently reunited with her birth parents. Never before in America had so much time lapsed between a kidnapping and a reunion.
In an exclusive interview with New York magazine this week, White and her birth parents talk about why that reunion wasn't a happy ending.
There's the fact that White said she loves her alleged abductor, Ann Pettway, who is behind bars and faces 20 years in prison if convicted of the kidnapping.
Then there are the rumors of a falling out between her and her now-separated birth parents that centered around money.
Although the story has unfolded in a way that has sometimes been messy, the woman at the center of the saga tells New York magazine that she's happy she finally knows the truth. "There was a part of me that wasn't even there, and now I feel whole. Even in the beginning of the year, with all the drama and stuff, I was kind of cloudy," she said. "But now I know who I am. That's the main thing — just to find out where you come from and who you are."
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