Just a quick note to remind even those well-intentioned people who ask questions or make comments about adoption to adoptive parents. This is a blog post I can relate to about the 10 Things NOT to say to an adoptive parent, as I believe I’ve been asked/told all of these 10 things she points out at one point or another after adopting our daughter Cora. I have shared insight about positive adoption language, myths and misnomers and similar topics before, but hopefully this is a good reminder. Surprisingly enough, I have actually gotten these questions by perfect strangers more than even close friends or family. So here’s a quick list of what NOT to say, discussed more at depth in the first blog post I linked:
She looks like she could be yours!
How much did she cost?
What do you know about her real parents?
Are you going to have children of your own (or, you’re so lucky you also got a child of your own)
Now you’ll get pregnant since you’ve adopted
Was her mom on drugs?
Why did they give her up?
Are you going to tell her she’s adopted?
Is she yours?
She’s so lucky! (see my previous post on this topic)
For me personally, I often have to bite my tongue after I tell people we found out we were pregnant around the time we took Cora home. I almost always get a comment about the “pressure being off” or “that always happens”, “you must have relaxed and that’s all you needed to get pregnant.” I rarely correct people, but in reality, we got pregnant at one of the most stressful points in our lives and in our marriage. We had just had a disrupted adoption and I was so depressed, anxious and walking around in a fog. At times I felt more like it had to have been an immaculate conception as my husband and I were not in the mood to think about growing our family naturally. So, my advice is not to make those types of statements when someone gives you facts about their family formation. Know there is likely much, much more to the story!
What to say instead? If you are curious about adoption or how the process works, ASK US! Most adoptive parents are happy to share their experiences, but bear in mind that they need to balance that with protecting their child’s adoption story. We love to share how lucky WE are to be parents to our amazing children, that are very much “our own” and our “real children”! Or if you want more info you can contact an adoption advisor, like me, for more info or continue to follow along on our learn page!