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She’s had a rough life, and wants just one thing for her birthday: “Looking to rent a family that I can spend time with”

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COLORADO — She says she has never had a birthday with her family, so she took to Craigslist in the hopes of renting a family to celebrate her birthday with her.

Among the many ads on Craigslist is one posted by 19-year-old Natalie Carson.

“Looking to rent a family that I can spend time with on my birthday in a few weeks,” Carson said.

Carson’s is an unusual but heartfelt message.

“I aged out of foster care and since I was never adopted, I don’t have a family to spend holidays or my birthdays with,” Carson said.

It is a request that to some, may seem so simple. Carson says spending time with a family would help make a usually difficult day special.

“It’s something that I’ve never really had. Of course I’ve had birthdays, but they haven’t really been good. Usually every birthday is really painful and hard,” Carson said.

Carson was a baby when she was placed in foster care in Colorado. She was quickly adopted, and moved with her adoptive family to Georgia.

“They were abusing me, and so I got placed back into foster care when I was 12,” Carson said.

At 18, she aged out of the foster care system. On her own for the first time, she took a bus back to Colorado.

“I really didn’t know anything but I knew I was born here,” Carson said.

Last year in Colorado, more than 200 teens aged out of the foster care system.

“There’s like, something more than just me — because there’s a million more of me,” Carson said.

Experts say it is not unusual for birthdays, graduations and holiday to be difficult. Carson found support at Urban Peak — a shelter that works with young people experiencing homelessness. Carson was able to get her GED and she is now working and attending college, where she’s studying computer science.

“I really didn’t think anyone would really answer (my ad), because I know it’s Craigslist,” Carson said.

But several people have reached out — giving Carson hope that she’ll finally have the birthday she’s always dreamed of.

“I felt like having one day where it’s okay. This about me and it’s my birthday,” Carson said.

Carson says she was inspired to post on Craigslist after she saw a girl in California write a similar ad.

Her birthday is in June, and hopefully it will be the best one yet.


  • Donna

    Natalie, I’m sorry you’ve had such a struggle in life and I wish we were closer to help you realize you are not alone in this world. Sounds like you are persevering and will make a good future for yourself. Yours is an inspiring story, although still sad because of your past. We will keep you in our prayers, and hope you have a blessed birthday.

    • mike

      I agree! I would gladly give you a party but you would have to come to Wisconsin, I’m a disabled Vet, but would give you a good Family time. God bless you, You will find a family..God will see to that.

  • Ms. H

    I admire your courage, strength, and initiative. You “do” matter. Rest assured of that. Your speaking out about your situation and lacking a family gives a voice to something that others experience, but don’t have the courage to acknowledge. I live in another state, unfortunately, or I would be happy to take you out for your birthday free-of-charge. I’m so glad that you are attending college and preparing yourself for the future. There are good things in-store for you. Keep up the good work. God Bless.

  • Anita Rice

    Hi, Natalie. Please hang in there I would love to be your surrogate Mom. I’m in SC. FOX please give e email address so that she can contact me.

  • Jen

    Does anyone have an e-mail address for her or an address where birthday cards could be sent? I would love to send her a card for her birthday!

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