A long-lost son tracked down his mother after being apart for 14 years – but ended up falling in love with her.
Shane Burke, 19, traced birth mother Rose Bestall via Facebook and the pair had an emotional reunion, going on to make up for lost time.
But as the weeks passed Mr Burke said he became ‘confused’ about his feelings towards Mrs Bestall and eventually admitted his attraction to her after they bonded over a ‘shared love of karaoke’.
Shane Burke, 19, left, pictured ith his birth mother Rose Bestall, left, whom he reunited with after 14 years
Mr Burke, right, said he initially developed romantic feelings for his mother, 35, but that their ‘normal’ relationship is now back on track after they talked it over
Mrs Bestall, who gave up Mr Burke for adoption when he was just five, told the Sunday People the declaration of love left her with a ‘massive dilemma’.
She said: ‘I knew Shane’s feelings were completely inappropriate but I had searched for him for so long and I didn’t want to push him away again.
‘I told him I loved him unconditionally as his mum but our relationship could never be anything else.’
Mr Burke said he had felt ‘incomplete’ during his life and always wondered about his birth parents and whether he had siblings.
He was given his parents’ names by his adoptive mother and father, but was blocked from contacting his mother via Facebook due to her tough privacy blocks.
Mr Burke then tried her son Nicholas, and sent a picture of himself, which his mother recognised due to his resemblance to his father.
After initially talking online, they had an emotional reunion before Mr Burke came to stay with her for a few weeks.
But their developing bond was threatened when Mr Burke admitted his romantic feelings, which drove his mother away.
After talking it over with her husband, she went back to her son and told him their relationship ‘could never be romantic’ but that she would not ‘push him away’.
Mr Burke told the People: ‘Now I love Rose because she is my mum, nothing more. I call her Rose as we’re all still adjusting but maybe in time I’ll call her mum.’
Mrs Bestall, left, has four other children with her husband Darryl, left, 33. She became pregnant aged 15 but was forced to give him up for adoption by social services
Mr Burke said he believes he had genetic sexual attraction, a condition where sexual attraction arises between relatives after they meet as adults.
He said he went through a ‘confusing time’ but that his mother was ‘understanding’ and they are now working on a normal relationship.
Mrs Bestall, who has four other children, became pregnant Mr Burke by accident aged just 15, with then boyfriend John Smith, who was also 15.
Social services stepped in and took him into foster care because she was ‘too young’ to look after him, although she was allowed supervised visits until he was adopted by a couple in Manchester. Mrs Bestall, married to Darryl, 33, eventually took a custody battle to the High Court, but a judge held that Mr Burke was already settled with his adoptive parents.