20 January 2015

How to make adoptive families cringe

2. "Are you going to have any of your own real children?"
I remember standing next to my mother, I was maybe 11, and hearing a stranger ask this question to my mommy.
Eleanor and Ralph, my awesome parents, on my Gotcha Day.
We were in a check out line and this stranger was commenting on my dark eyes and hair and my mother's very blond hair and light eyes. The conversation continued and, eventually, my mom told the stranger that I was her "little adopted angel."
It was then the question came.
"Are you going to have any of your own real children?"
I sank. Pretended not to hear.
My mom, however, smiled sweetly. And then totally let the woman have it.
"Does my daughter not look 'real' to you?"
She continued on. I don't remember exactly what was said. But I do remember smiling and feeling proud of my mom as she blasted this ignorant soul. It was glorious.
I have always known I was adopted. And I have never been ashamed of being adopted.
I have an older brother (from my mom's first marriage) and a younger sister who were not adopted. There were many miscarriages before they made the decision to adopt. It was a difficult process for them - financially and emotionally.
Throughout my life I've heard all sorts of comments from people. Most are made out of ignorance.
The next time you encounter an adoptive family, don't say these things ...

1. How can you love her as much as your other kids?
Seriously? What?
2. Are you going to have any of your own real children?
We already talked about this one.
3. You two look like you could really be sisters.
First of all, God's funny like that. Second of all, we are really sisters.
4. Do you know the parents?
Uh, we're the parents.
5. Aren't you afraid she'll find out she's adopted?
She knows she's adopted. Why would we keep that a secret?

Are you in an adoptive family? What's the worst thing someone has said to you?


  1. Do all your children have the same father?!?! Duh! Yes! Father God and my amazing husband!

    Did you adopt from Guatemala? (Asking about an actual biological child of mine!) hahahaha!

    Are you going to tell them about their real mom? (Um, yeah, sure, I'm like not invisible-- they totally know I exist!)

    Are you going to tell her she's adopted? (Asking about our recently adopted amazingly precious miracle african American baby girl!) ummm I think she might notice.....

    Great topic Aunt Patti! I love you and we love our abundant amazing adoption-crazy fun filled family! So glad God had this plan to fill our lives with such joy and love!

    1. WOW! Can't believe people actually asked you those questions! I love your family and miss you! XOX

  2. It's crazy what people will ask ;) I"m sure 9 out of 10 times they are purely innocent comments, but it is great to raise awareness to those families that God has created just the way He has wanted and to possibly stop people from being innocently insensitive and hurting people's feelings! It's not so much me that is ever "hurt," but like you said, the children and the explaining and the assurance they need after those comments!

    Miss you! xoxoxox