TikTok might not seem like the most natural platform on which to honor your parent’s sacrifice, but for Jordan Benewiat, it worked in a manner far beyond her wildest dreams. She took to the popular app to tell the story of her rocky childhood, and her video and its amazing, redeeming twist has racked up over 9 million TikTok views. The reason? Jordan’s adoptive dad, Steve Benewiat.
It all started when Steve came into her and her brother Jarred’s life when Jordan was just seven. He began dating their mom, but soon her battles with addiction left her unfit to parent or be in a romantic relationship. On Jordan’s 8th birthday, her mother got drunk and violent and ransacked their house. When Steve came home from out of town and saw what had happened, he immediately called the police. He could no longer see Jordan and Jarred in danger.
The kids were placed in foster care, but this was not what Steve Benewiat wanted for them. Despite having no familial connection to them, he wanted to raise Jordan and Jarred as his own and make sure they had a loving, stable upbringing. But the road to getting there wasn’t easy.
“The first time I saw my dad cry was the day he thought we were being taken by the state,” Jordan told Love What Matters. “I had no idea why he was crying in the courtroom but when he explained it to me I burst into tears and he just hugged me until we had to leave. Luckily by divine intervention, he was given emergency foster rights.”
After three years of fostering, Steve was finally able to officially able to adopt Jordan and Jarred. From the moment they came into his care, their lives changed for the better and they began to heal from the unstable, traumatic life they had lived with their mom.
“My dad gave me stability and safety I had never known before. Before I met him as far back as I can remember I was scared and worried. My brother and I had to worry about whether we would eat, if we would go to school if our mom would die from drinking too much,” Jordan said.