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Man who claims to be Oprah's 'secret son' reveals pain of abandonment

Katie McKay-Phillips is a freelance writer and the creator of Ruffled Feathers, an online wedding and event style brand. She lives in Chicago with her husband, son and two English bulldogs. Katie is a Highland Games competitor and streng...

Oprah accused of abandoning a boy in 1997: Is it true?

Calvin Mitchell is speaking out, making some bold claims against Oprah Winfrey.

Mitchell claims that Winfrey tried to adopt him as a young boy but ultimately left him abandoned and depressed. The details he gives about their alleged relationship are head-scratchingly strange, too.

He told Radar Online in an exclusive interview, “I want to ask Oprah, ‘Why did you leave me? Why did you leave me?'"

Heartbroken, Mitchell claims he is still "empty."

"I’m still searching. I don’t have closure to this. I just don’t understand," he said.

Here is what he claims happened: He met Oprah in 1992, when he was cast as an extra on the show There Are No Children Here. What he says happened next is straight out of a made-for-TV movie. He claims he slipped past security onset, picked up a Diet Coke and offered it to Winfrey, who was so smitten with the adorable 11-year-old she offered to allow him to be her "personal bodyguard."

He said after filming ended he stayed in contact with Winfrey, even going so far as to claim she wanted to adopt him. "Oprah asked my mom if she could adopt me, and my mom denied her."

Mitchell’s mother even confirmed this. Eva Mitchell told Radar Online, "It felt strange because I felt if someone wanted to help me with my children, that’s one thing. But to actually adopt one child knowing I have others? I couldn’t allow her to separate my children."

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But it wasn’t just Winfrey who Mitchell was tight with. Of Oprah's longtime boyfriend, Stedman Graham, Mitchell says, "We had a close relationship... he used to take me to [Chicago] Bulls games, and we went to the black rodeo that he hosted every year... Oprah and Stedman were like family to me."

The real trouble — and back-turning — didn’t come until Mitchell made the decision to drop out of school. As Mitchell got older, he claims Winfrey paid for him to go to a prestigious boarding school in Mississippi, but the 17-year-old grew terribly homesick.

"I just wanted to come home, and Oprah didn't understand that. She told me, ‘Calvin, just try to work it out. You can do it. Just hang in there.’ She was trying to inspire me to do what was right. But even after the long pep talk she gave me, I still left."

It was after that when Winfrey apparently cut Mitchell out of her life.

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He explained, "By leaving school, I’d failed my whole family. I’d let everybody down. But I thought Oprah and Stedman would still be a part of my life. At one point, it was like I’d lost my whole world."

People commenting on the Radar article are understandably baffled by Mitchell’s alleged account of his close relationship with Winfrey. Those commenters who give this man the benefit of the doubt have said it was his fault for blowing it when someone was trying to give him assistance and a better life. But most just think he is looking for money.

One person pretty succinctly summed it up, saying, "It's sad to me he doesn't recognise (sic) the things she did give him, he only sees what she didn't give him. He gives absolutely no thanks to the years of school and outings he was gifted with. That's sad. And it explains why he dropped out of school, he placed no value on the gift."

More: Oprah honors Martin Luther King Jr. by marching to Selma

Do you believe Mitchell when he says Oprah Winfrey wanted to adopt him but instead cut him out of her life?

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