Sunday, January 26, 2014

Will We tell our Child they are adopted?

This past weekend, I was at the March for Life sponsored by Louisiana Right to Life. It was a great march, but COLD!!! Louisiana has had a bit of Arctic weather lately. My table was next to this lady with another local organization. We began talking and she told me she was an adoptive mom- her son was 21. She then asked if I had children and I was able to share about our adoption journey. Total God moment for sure. 

Our stories were very similar- we both married later in life, had infertility, adoption. What struck me was that she said they never talked about the adoption with her son- in fact he didn't know he was adopted until he was 8. He talks about it with other people, but never with his parents. I'm not sure how it came about but I mentioned something about telling our child they are adopted at an early age. Stunned, she asked me, "You really are going to tell them they're adopted when they're little?" I said- "Yes. It not anything to be ashamed about. We want them to know- it's a part of their story." I explained to her that obviously, we weren't going to have a 30 minute conversation with our child every day about adoption, but we want to have a climate in our home/family where our child knows they are adopted, can talk about it and ask any questions- without worrying about upsetting us. I think that's what happened with this woman- she had not dealt with her own insecurities about not being able to have biological children, fear of the child wanting to meet their bio family, etc. This is a major area that I cover with my families that I work with. 

Adoption is a not a secret, not anything to be ashamed about. Hopefully, we'll be able to meet our child's birth family so we'll be able to tell our child one day that we did get to meet them, what they're like, etc. It's important for our child to know where they come from- to celebrate their family. There's a great book that I've read called "Telling the Truth to Your Adopted Child" by Jayne Schooler- highly recommend. It talks about the different developmental stages of children and how they think about adoption at that age. So yes, we'll tell our child they're adopted. It just means that they have two families who love them very much- double blessing. 

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