After writing ‘What Not To Say To Foster Parents” I started thinking about all the things I hate hearing. Sounds negative, I know! But in attempts to make my negative thoughts occur less frequently when speaking to people in real life, I am going to tell you all my thoughts!
I adopted my oldest son at age 4. He came home from the hospital directly to us, as foster parents and we knew instantly that he would be ours forever. We are the only family he has ever known and we are confident that we are the right place for him. He was our first child and now we have been blessed with 3 other little boys and a currently have a foster baby girl.
What Not To Say To An Adoptive Parent
Below I list a few statements or questions that I receive often.
“How many kids do you have now? Three?” “No four,” “Yeah, but 3 of your own, right? You have one that you adopted.”
This is a conversation I have more frequently that you can imagine. This is usually coming from people who know me, although not very well. This statement offends me beyond belief. My oldest son is mine as much as any of my others. He ‘belongs’ to me, just as my other kids do. He has my last name and I am responsible for him. This also brings us into number 2.
“But do you feel the same way for him as you do the other kids?”
OF COURSE I DO! He is mine, I have had him his whole life. I love him and treat him as I would any of the other children. Just because a child does not come from your womb, does not mean that you can’t love them the exact same way! I have been asked this question a number of times and I feel like screaming!
“What’s the story with his birth parents?”
I touched on this on my foster parent post, but I will focus on it here as well. It is none of your business. I am way too polite of a person to say that face to face, but it’s the truth. It has nothing to do with our current life and there is no reason that the whole neighbourhood needs to know about the lives of the people who blessed me with an amazing gift. It is my job to protect the privacy of my son. I am sure when he gets older, he will have questions and at that time, I will discuss some details privately with him.
“Oh, so you didn’t think you could have kids?”
I got this question again just yesterday. I was 22 years old when my oldest was born, married only a few months. We didn’t plan on having children so quickly and had not started trying yet. This question does not make me upset, or frustrated like the statements above do, however, I want to kindly let everyone know that infertility is not the only reason people adopt. There is obviously nothing wrong with adoption due to infertility. It is a great option for many people hoping to be blessed with children. That being said, it is not the only reason people do it. Some feel led to adopt in general, or like us, have a child placed into our lives that needed a ‘forever family’. No matter what the reason for adoption, it is a blessing to the parent(s) and the child(ren).
“Wow, he doesn’t look like his brothers.”
That’s right, he doesn’t (although in our case, he looks more like his dad than any of his biological siblings). When having my 3rd son I was hoping and praying that him and my second son would look different. I already heard ALL THE TIME about how different sons looked. One had dark hair and eyes, was thin and tall, the other round, blond and blue eyed. I wanted all my kids to look different, I didn’t want an ‘odd one out’. Turns out, now with 4, I have very different looking children (although 3 with blue eyes). It is exciting to watch them grow and change and I can’t wait to see what they each become.
Do you have an adoption story? I would love to hear it. Leave a comment!