Jodie Sweetin’s parents came into her life via adoption when she was just a baby, so the small-screen star never had a chance to develop a bond with her biological family.
But as she explained in a new interview, the father who raised her had his own interesting connection to them.
Sweetin’s father, Sam, first spotted her at the home of his ex-wife, Rose, with whom he shared three adult children.
“(Rose) was my biological father’s aunt,” the 40-year-old said during a visit to the “Conversations With Olivia Jade” podcast. “(Sam) would go over there to check on her, check on the house, make sure things were working right, whatever. He was still around that family, and he saw me there.” And, as fate would have it, Sam and his second wife, Janice, were hoping to start a family of their own.
People don’t really talk about it, because I think there’s this weird sense of shame if there’s an interfamily adoption. But I think that interfamily adoption happens a lot...
“My parents really wanted to have kids and they were having some struggles, so it wound up that they were able to adopt me sort of through that chain,” Sweetin continued. “It’s an interesting story, and actually, I think it’s a story that happens a lot. People don’t really talk about it, because I think there’s this weird sense of shame if there’s an interfamily adoption. But I think that interfamily adoption happens a lot, so I like sharing my story now, because I think that more people are like, ‘Oh my gosh, me, too.' It doesn’t feel as isolating and weird and outside of the norm.”
Family means a lot to Sweetin, and that includes her “Full House” family and, in particular, another important father figure — the late Bob Saget.
“I would spend time with Bob’s family on weekends,” she recalled of her childhood days in the cast. “It was just a family unit, and I’m so incredibly grateful for it, because I just gained this huge family of people that I know love me no matter what. Whatever happens, our differences or whatever, we just genuinely love each other. And no matter what happens, we’ll always show up for each other.”
And despite Saget's death at the age of 65 in January, the affable actor and comedian lives on in the example he set for Sweetin as she now raises two children of her own.
“I remember Bob just being really inclusive of his kids, and he didn't talk to them like they were idiots” Sweetin said. “And he did the same with me. He treated me with respect as a young person, and so did John (Stamos) and Dave (Coulier). I understood that when I had kids, you can joke with them, you can have real conversations."