“Truly my hero since the day he came into my life.”

*This story first appeared on Love What Matters on May 25, 2022.

Families come in all shapes and sizes, and there is no one single path to becoming a family. Sometimes families are born. But sometimes, they are made. 

In a TikTok video that has gone viral with over 9.2M views, Jordan Benewiat gives a powerful tribute to the “world’s best dad.” A man who walked into her life when she was 7 years old and changed it forever.

Grab the tissues, you’re going to need them.

How Her Mother’s Boyfriend of One Year Ended Up Becoming Her Dad

man teaching a little girl to ride a bike
Photo by Lgh_9

Jordan was seven years old when she met her mother’s new boyfriend, Steve. Shortly afterward, he moved in.

At her 8th birthday party, while Steve was working out of town, her mother, in an alcoholic rage, destroyed the house while the kids hid in the basement. The police were called and her mother was arrested.

Battling years of alcoholism and being unable to care for her children, the courts decided to place Jordan and her older brother, Jarred, 11, into foster care.

Steve, who had only known the kids for one year, didn’t hesitate to ask for custody.

“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.

With no foster homes available, and their biological father in prison, the court granted Steve temporary emergency care.

He immediately started down the long and complex road of adoption and, in the meantime, also got his foster care license so he could keep the kids.

Three years later, Steve officially adopted Jordan and Jarred. “The happiest day of my life,” Jordan said.

The Viral TikTok That Proves He Really Is “The World’s Best Dad”

Jordan shares their incredible journey on TikTok in a 29-second clip that has captured the hearts of millions. She captions it: “Truly my hero since the day he came into my life.”

In the video, she shows various family photos of Steve, showing up for her and her brother throughout their childhoods.

The text overlay reads:

“Our birth mom was an alcoholic and couldn’t be a parent so her boyfriend she had known only a year who owed her and her kids absolutely nothing, became the world’s best dad.”

It continues:

“Raised us as a single father, took on two kids completely alone, and he never once hesitated when he got the chance to adopt us.”

If this isn’t the definition of a true hero, I don’t know what is.

How One Man Proved the Power of Love

Steve, already a dad to three grown daughters, who he also raised single-handedly, could have easily just walked away. He owed Jordan and Jarred nothing. And yet, when their mother stepped out, he stepped in. And he stayed.

He made a life-altering decision to take on someone else’s kids and raise them as his own.

He chose them.

And when we get to look another person in the eyes and say, “I choose you,” there’s something to be said about the power of that kind of love.

“He showed up every time we needed him to. He gave me back the second half of my childhood,” Jordan said.

Jordan and Jarred were finally able to have the childhood they’d only ever dreamed of. Thanks to Steve, their lives changed dramatically.

“I was finally able to ride my bike, go to school, play sports, and never worry about dinner,” Jordan said. “He gave me someone you want to call when my life feels like it’s falling apart. He gave me the safety I had never known. My life wouldn’t look at all like it does without him.”

How One Person Can Make All the Difference in a Child’s Life

Because of Steve’s love and dedication, Jordan has been able to heal from her past traumas and grow into a happy, healthy young adult.

“I just want people to know that our dad is our hero. I remember every feeling I felt for the seven years we didn’t know him and if it wasn’t for him I’d probably have over 18 years of that pain under my belt,” Jordan said.

Steve’s actions are a testament to the transformative impact one person can have on a child’s life, offering stability, guidance, and unconditional love.

He is also a testament to the extraordinary power of a father’s love. A love not defined by blood, but by the unbreakable bonds we create.