The heart-wrenching story of Kristine and Michael Barnett adopting Natalia Grace, who they believed was a young girl with a rare bone condition, has garnered worldwide attention.
In 2010, the couple welcomed the Ukrainian orphan into their home, but it was later discovered that she was, in fact, a 22-year-old woman.
What began as an effort to expand their family turned into a nightmare that left the couple fearing for their lives.
In an upcoming documentary about their ordeal, titled The Curious Case of Natalia Grace, Michael speaks candidly about the trauma they endured.
“We were all abused,” he says in the trailer. “I hate this. She tried to poison and kill my wife. [And] one night, I opened my eyes and Natalia is standing at the foot of the bed with a knife in her hand.”
Michael had previously spoken about discovering knives in the house, which he believed Natalia intended to use against him and his wife.
Speaking on This Morning, he recounted instances where she would put thumbtacks on the stairs face up, causing them to step on them as they walked up and down the stairs. He also mentioned finding knives under her bed. “There was a moment when I woke up in the middle of the night, and Natalia was standing over my bed with a knife in her hand, a very blank look on her face, and she’s just standing there with a knife.”
These terrifying accounts have made headlines worldwide, but Natalia denied any of it when she was asked in 2019. She denied ever going into their bedroom with a knife and said she had no intention of harming them. Natalia claims that she felt loved by the family and believed that she had found the right mom and dad after bouncing around from many families.
The case of Natalia Grace is a unique one that raises questions about adoption and mental health. The fact that Kristine and Michael were unaware that Natalia was a grown woman is a matter of concern. While they believed they were providing a safe and loving home for a young girl with medical needs, it is now evident that their good intentions may have put them in harm’s way.
The case of Natalia Grace is a complex one that underscores the importance of mental health evaluations for children who have experienced trauma or have unique medical conditions.
Watch the trailer for the documentary below: