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10 questions not to ask adoptive parents…

The world of adoption can act in mysterious ways.  One day the couple next door has no children and the next day they have kids playing in the yard.  While each adoption is different there is one thread of commonality to all – “the story”.  Each adoptive family has their story about why they chose to adopt and how it all transpired.  Many who have not gone through the process can be a bit awkward around a new adoptive family and want to know all the details.  Image if you asked some friends who had a biological child everything about the process…it gets real personal…real quick.  The same holds true for adoptive families.

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Adoptive families and children that have been adopted deserve the same level of privacy that any other family has.  They can choose to share “their story” or they can choose to keep their journey to themselves.  When my wife and I adopted we had many friends and family want to know all the details of how we adopted our child.  We decided that our story was in fact not really our story but rather our child’s to share if and when they were ready.

The adoption process is highly emotional for the birth parents, adoptive parents and the child involved.  It is filled with the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. I wanted to pass along a list of 10 questions to avoid asking adoptive parents.  This is not meant to exclude you from the new family, but rather to allow the new family to bond and become a family.  Trust me, my wife and I have heard them all and then some.

What Not to Say:
“Who are his ‘real’ parents?”

“Aren’t you wonderful to adopt this child?”

“How could his ‘real’ mother give away an adorable baby?”

“Do you know anything about his background?”

“What will you do if he searches for his ‘real’ mother?”

“Your kids look so different? Which one is yours?”

“It’s just like having one of your own, isn’t it?”

“Why was she given up for adoption?”

“How much did you pay for your baby?”

“Now that you’ve adopted, you’ll probably get pregnant, don’t you think?”

When someone finds out that my child is adopted my favorite question is always – they look just like you – how did that happen?  My response is always the same…they are my child, why wouldn’t they look like me?

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