Adoption Etiquette

I have wanted to adopt for a long, long time. I remember Wade and I having a conversation about it pretty early on in our dating life. Because it’s something we have always known we would do, we’ve always been very aware of families with adopted children, language in the media, etc. As we formally entered into the adoption process we have been required to take numerous educational classes and read lots of books (on both adoption and Korea).

One of the things that still surprises me is how adoptive parents are extremely sensitive (and maybe rightfully so) to questions/words/implications made by someone foreign to the adoptive world. One of the biggest ones is differentiating between biological and adoptive children. Most people use the phrase “real” children instead of biological. Part of me can see how this would be offensive to an adoptive parent. The adopted child is just as much their “real” child. The other part of me knows I also used the same language before I was introduced to proper terminology. Can’t we just assume the person doesn’t know the “right” word? Wade and I joke that when asked if Teague is adopted we will look the person straight in the eye and say “no”. Because, really, why ask the question? It’s going to be very obvious he doesn’t look like us.

(The big question for me is if I will feel differently after I bring Teague home and actually have to deal with the situation.)

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