How to let them know they were adopted?

Renee - posted on 01/16/2009 ( 42 moms have responded )

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Hi everyone, I have a few questions. My husband and I are going thru the foster-adoption process. Since it was foster care first, we never in a million years thought that we would end up with newborns that actually look like us. We were prepared for the exact opposite.



Having said that, we never considered how we would let them know they were adopted...just figured they would be old enough to be aware of the circumstances. So...that's my question: How did you let them know they were adopted? We believe in letting them know from birth but do you just start reading books about adoption and talking about it and then they finally ask? Please tell me your experiences, what worked and what didn't? Thanks! Renee

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Winnie - posted on 01/17/2009

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Hi Renee, I am Winnie, mama of one little man man who is three now. He looks like us too - that is so awesome. We definatly feel like he needed to know that he was adopted right from the beginning so that we did not drop a bombshell on him later. The way that we have done it, of course he is still so little, but we celebrate "Gotcha Day" every year. Gotcha day is the day that we were able to bring him home, and add him to our family. So he gets a special present - and we look at some of his baby pictures which usually starts the conversation a little bit. I don't go into a large story, just a senctence or two, here and there. For example..."Your were handpicked to be our son. I didn't carry you in my tummy, but wanted you so much, that I carried you in my heart" I am also going to let him know that his birthmom loved him so much, and she chose life for him, even if she could not provide it for him. I want him to always have known that he is adopted because it is such a blessing. Without our adoption, I would not be called mama. It is very nice to meet you. Congratulations on this adoption of your newborns. It is such a blessing.

Becki - posted on 01/23/2009

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My DS is 5, but we have a bio DS age 4.  (Yeah, I'm  one of THOSE.  Adopt then gets pregnant a few months later...)  We have read books to Spencer but he didn't grasp the idea.  When one of our neighbors had a new baby, that gave me an opening to explain that he grew in another lady's tummy and that she picked us to be his Mommy & Daddy.  He thought that was cool. 



Our social worker who did our homestudy gave us the advice to just build it into his life so he just always knows that's how he came to be in our family.  She did say to us that by the time he turns 18, we should have told him EVERYTHING we know about his b-parents.  The good, the bad, or the ugly.  Although we have a sort of open adoption, at that point he can decide if he wants to pursue a relationship with Bmom and siblings.

Cynthia - posted on 01/21/2009

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Hi!  I am a new member, but not a new adoptive mom.  I have three adopted sons, 23, 19, and 16 and one biological son, 14.  My older three sons were adopted as infants and have always known they were adopted; we had a special "adoption birthday" for my oldest son, but not the others.  I did read the "Why was I adopted book?" when they were little and I always made sure that they knew lots of other kids who were also adopted.  As a matter of fact, they thought everyone was adopted!  My third son is the only one who was a little confused because he would insist that he, too, grew in my "tummy" like his youngest brother!



The only bad experience any of them every had was when they shared the fact that they were adopted with other people who were not very educated about adoption and what it means.  They have all had children AND adults refer to me and their dad as "not their real parents" or have been asked rude, hurtful questions.  So, after a few times with my older kids, I told them that while being adopted is not anything to be embarrased about or a secret, that they were not obligated to share that information unless they wanted to do so.  Of course, they were all older (school aged) when those situations occurred.



As the mother of both biological and adopted children, I can tell you that there is no difference in the way I feel about them.  I feel blessed to have them all!



 

Kimber - posted on 01/20/2009

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We let them know from the beginning. When they were both tiny babies, I would practice telling them each their stories. We read bedtime stories like Tell me again about the night I was born, How I was adopted, and their own story that I made little scrapbooks of. My son's favorite adoption story is his own. He loves looking at pictures of his birthmom, of us, and of his day in court. I think he really started understanding when we adopted his sister, because it was more of a real thing that we were doing. We also celebrate their adoption anniversaries with a special dinner, and we go over the story of that child's adoption.

Funny story: There was a pregnant mom at church, and my 3 yr old son asked why her tummy was so big. So she replied that there was a baby growing in there, that God puts them in mommy's tummy. My son says to her, no silly, babies come from the hospital.

Natalie - posted on 01/19/2009

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how do you have a conversation with your baby about being adopted? this is a question i asked myself often before we got our daughter. we knew we wanted our children to know from the start but didn't know quite how to go about it. so- once she got home when i would rock her at night before bed i would sing songs. and some nights i would tell her "her story". knowing she was not old enough to know what i was talking about. but thinking it was easiest to just make it like a normal conversation. because some day it would be. She is now 5 1/2 and asks every now and then for us totell her how she was adopted. and she also asks us to tell her how her brother was adopted as well. these are some of their favorite stories. and they are only 5 1/2 & 2. but they already know. (it may help that they are darker than us and can see a physical difference) my husband would also just say flat out to them (when they were babies) "you're adopted." at any given time. out of the blue. for no reason. not so much any more. we don't want them to feel like they are different for being adopted. just that they are. and the wonderful way that they joined our family. So i guess my solution/advise make it as natural as having a conversation with them.

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Sandra - posted on 11/02/2012

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My fiance daughters are adopted. I have known for 4 years now and have to keep a tight lip. His daughters do not get along very well. Their Dad has been divorced for 10 years. The divorced parents do not communicate well nor work together for the sake of the children. His girls are now 16/18 years old. Should they ever be told? One child has severe behavioral issues and takes a quite large amount of prescriptions daily to alternate her mood/behavior. These two girls dislike each other very much, the younger is favored in my opinion because of her disabilities. When they come to visit their father, the whole dynamics of the house changes. My children lock themselves in their rooms. I find myself cleaning more than normal. His youngest 16 years old follows him around the house like a puppy. She can't read nor write, but needs constant stimulation to keep her happy. His oldest is depressed, and doesn't talk. It's not a good environment. The 18 year old said to me the other day that she doesn't want any children when she grows up in fear that they will turn out like her sister. The ex wife and my fiance do not get along - after 10 years of being divorced. I have suggested that my fiance tell his children that they are adopted since maybe the oldest would have some empathy or understanding for her younger sister with all the issues. Maybe some sense of clarity could come out of it and help this family that hasn't healed? I wish he never told me that they were adopted because I feel like I have to watch everything that comes out of my mouth at times. I have been told to stay out of it. But I'm the one mothering these girls when they come over for the weekend. Cooking for them, washing their clothes, taking them shopping with me etc. His oldest ask a lot of questions and basically tells me that she doesn't like her mother, sister, etc. When is the best time for the truth to be told?

Sally - posted on 02/26/2012

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Wow! It seems I wrote to this thread so long ago. Some things have changed...most for the better. My son just turned 28 a week ago. He finally left the Army last summer and married a wonderful young woman he met while stationed in El Paso, Texas. He's changed his mind about being a firefighter, deciding instead to go back to school with hopes of becoming a lawyer.



I have no regrets about the way we explained adoption to him. He has confided to his wife that he sometimes wonders about his birth mother and why she placed him for adoption, but that doesn't seem to upset him or make him feel sorry that he was adopted. If anything, I think it makes him more determined to be a good father once he has children. All in all, he's very comfortable "in his own skin". The fact that we always encouraged him to be himself and do what feels right to him seems to be the most important gift we could have given him.



Needless to say, I couldn't be more proud of him under any circumstances.

Teresa - posted on 02/26/2012

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Hi Renee! I am going through the same thing right now with our 4 year daughter! We have a couple of adoption books.. the Mr. Roger's one, one called Tell Me a Real Adoption Story Betty Jean Lifton and another one by Joanna Cole (I think). Anyway, this subject has come more to the forefront because my brother and sister in law are expecting in July-which our daughter is very excited about. So I believe as you do.. to be open about it from the start. Our daughter knows she is adopted, has always been in her vocabulary, but now is starting to ask more questions.. I don't want her to think she came from my tummy when she didn't-it is not fair to her to have something not true in her mind as part of her true life story.

Vickie - posted on 10/29/2009

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Also, when my son turned 7, I told him that his being adopted was his news to share but only if he wanted to. He also knows that being adopted is very special. Sometimes he used to say, "So & So's parents are stuck with ________ but you chose ME!

Loretta - posted on 10/22/2009

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Our girls were bio sisters and 3 and 5 years old when we adopted them in 1991. We always celebrated the day they first came to live with us as their "[Our last name inserted here] Birthday". We would also throughout the years tell them "I'm so glad I adopted you!". Since they were in the foster system, they had a "Life Book" which told their story and had pictures of foster family, even bio parents. We always tried to answer their questions as age-appropriately as possible.

Catherine - posted on 10/22/2009

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My adopted daughter looks just like me too, because she is really my granddaughter. I gained legal custody of her when she was 4 days old and a preemie in the hospital. My daughter could not take care of her because of her disabilities. My husband (not her biological grandfather) legally adopted her when she was 2 1/2. She has known from the beginning that she is adopted. But she doesn't know that my oldest daughter (that I have no contact with) is her biological mother. I have no idea when to tell my little girl. Her pediatrician says to wait until she is about 8 or 9. Anyone have any ideas?

Vickie - posted on 10/20/2009

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I told my son from the time he was a baby. There's a good book called "So, You're Adopted" with cute illustrations. It explains adoption with humor & making it easy for younger children to understand.

App+7mnejhu - posted on 09/02/2009

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Our son is now three, and we adopted him at birth. We were at his birth and he came home from the hospital with us. We have an open adoption with both birth parents, who are both now married to separate people with families. We have always told our son he was adopted from birth. At first, we would tell him stories as we rocked him to sleep, and read him stories (I started reading to him when he was 2 weeks old). We keep photos of each of his birth parents in his room, and we talk about them often, especially when we have visits with them. Every year, we celebrate "adoption day" (the day our adoption became final with the court) by taking a family, weekend trip -- just the three of us. We don't exchange gifts -- we spend family time together doing fun things. We still read adoption books, just like any other book -- we even have one specifically on open adoption -- its a cute story about a mouse. We don't talk about it every day, but when the opportunity presents itself, we talk about it. We are currently starting a second adoption, so we are talking about it a little more lately, just because we are going through the home study process again. Our hope is that it is just a normal thing for him as he grows up, even though he doesn't really understand it fully, it will be part of his vocabulary and won't be a shock to him to when he gets older.

Mary - posted on 08/17/2009

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Our son is 7 and we are just preparing now to tell him the full wonderful story of our family. It's a personal decision, I know people who have always known and they are totally comfortable with it.

Sally - posted on 07/17/2009

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My son is now 25. He is adopted from India, so there is no question that he is adopted. He came home to us when he was just over 14 months old. From the first time I held him in my arms, I have told him "His" story. Yes, that story changed some over the years to fit his level of maturity/comprehension. It was always just very "matter of fact"...how we wanted a child to love and be a part of our family, his being born on the other side of the world to a "mommy" who was unable to give him what he needed, how he came to be "our" son, etc. I always made it a point to let him know that he was NEVER unwanted. He knew from the start that it had to be very hard for his birth mother to let him go and how loving and unselfish such an act that is. We never had any special "gotcha" day or adoption day. It just didn't feel right for us. I think the last time I told him "his story" was a few years ago when he returned from being deployed in Afghanistan. Something registered with him when he saw the native children who looked like him, living in very different circumstances than what he was raised in. As we looked at a picture of a bunch of Afghani children reaching out for candy and little packets of small toys and such, I said, "You know, that could have been you." He hugged me and simply said, "Yeah....but it wasn't." He's very comfortable with his family, even though his father and I divorced when he was 14. We had a very amicable divorce and he handled it better than many. He is very close with his extended family...cousins, aunts, uncles...and was VERY close with his grandparents prior to their passing in the last few years. One of the reasons he chose the Army and chose to be stationed out of Hawaii/Schofield Barracks is because, "Granpa was in the Army and he went to school in Hawaii". He wants to become a firefighter when he leaves the Army this spring, like "Uncle Bill".

My advice? Do what feels right for you and your child. Be honest and always leave the door open for questions. They are grown before you know it.

Lorna - posted on 07/15/2009

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I am adopted and I have a “special day” (the same as a “gotcha day” but sounds a little more serious to me) the day they became my parents Every yean my special day I would get a small gift (not the same as a birthday…) just from them and they would explain that I was adopted and what it meant. For the first few years it obviously meant nothing to me as I didn’t understand and as I got older I would ask questions more often and discuss it more on my “special” day. It made the whole thing so normal. When I was 2 my parents had a biological child (much to there surprise and happiness) and on my special day they would explain it to her as well. My mom asked me who the 2 people that loved each other the most in world were and of course I said “you and my dad” (I was around 6 years old) and then she said that they had a piece of paper and a lot of love but no blood ties, just like me and them . It made me realize that I was truly a part of the family. I have grown up knowing that I was chosen to be in a family that loves me with all there heart and it’s a true blessing.

My mum also made a small book with all the information she had regarding my “bio mom” and health related issue etc…plus all the things I would need if I ever wanted to try and find her. Its important to have these things especially if it’s a closed / private adoption.

Congratulations to you and good luck. ♥

Shae - posted on 07/13/2009

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I love your idea of celebrating Gotcha Day!! I plan on starting that with my daughter on the next anniversary of our first day. (I am going to choose the first day she came into our home as a foster child when she was 3 months old) Thank you for the great idea.

Cathy - posted on 07/13/2009

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Hi ,

I am an adoptee. I was a state ward until I adopted myself at 18. A white aboriginal girl in a white family. Not from the stolen generation though. My Aunty took me on a holiday from Queensland to Sydney and left me with a man at Potts Point and forgot where she left me(goes the story). Lol.

I was lucky...I stayed with the same family from the age of 2, My mum(foster mum/adoptive mum/earth angel) always told me the truth, I have known all my life about my situation. (Well we had Department of Childrens services visiting all the way throughought my childhood due to my dads death of Cancer and still being a ward of the state. So anyway I remember Mum being scared they would take me away from her as now she was a single mum with 3 children from Dads first marriageWhom was a widower) as well as her own 2 birth children an then there was me. 6 children all up.

When I say Mum, I mean the woman who has been there for me all my life the woman who fought tooth and nail to keep me safe with her. Mum.



I think my advice would be to start early and be honest,

I think each to their own, everyone is different and I think your heart will tell you along the way what the right way to go about it for you is.. My poor family, I gave them hell. We are all good now, mostly. I don't think I truly found "myself" until around my 30th birthday (A real soul searcher!)

When Mum told me I was special cause they went to the home and chose me it made me feel a bit angry....

I guess it reminds me of the pound?

I have always appreciated all she does for me but after meeting my birth mum I realized just how lucky I was!

May your family make lots of wonderful happy memories.

You Foster Mums and Adoptive Mums all ROCK!!

[deleted account]

all these suggestions are great... i always try to remember one thing, though... our babies WERE adopted... that's just how they came to our families... it doesn't need to define them or continue to be a label. when people ask, i sometimes say 'we're an adoptive family' - that way we're talking about all of us instead of focusing on our son, saying 'he was adopted'.

Shae - posted on 07/12/2009

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I also adopted my daughter thru the foster system. She was 3 months old when she came to my home, but she was still visiting with her "tummy mommy" until she was 2 years old. During that time, we took pictures of them during supervised visits, which were incorporated into her "Life Book". That book tells her story from the beginning. The important part of that story is the truth about why she was not with her tummy mommy, and the blessing that she was to our family and visa-versa. There was never any deep secret about all of it, she knew the ligitimate reasons why she wasn't safe in the original circumstances. Marlee knows she was hand picked to be my daughter (after having 3 biological sons) and that she is special in her own right.

[deleted account]

My son is almost 6 and I don't ever remember 'telling' him he is adopted. We have pictures of our pregnant birth mother with my husband and I, pictures of all of us in the labor room and tons of pictures of her visits. We made a collage of some of them and they hang in our kitchen over the table. We have had many discussions over our meals about the pictures and it is very natural and normal.



He has asked about why I didn't give birth to him (I can't remember how old he was, it just seemed to be part of the progression) and I told him my baby making parts were broken and that was the last of that.

User - posted on 07/11/2009

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I was adopted as an infant, and I also foster adopted my young daughter. The best way for me is to just bring it up in conversation, even before they know what the heck you're talking about. It comes up naturally many times. For me, I grew up knowing it, and never remember a time when we had that 'first talk'. Seems like just common knowledge and no big deal that way. Hope this helps.

Virginia - posted on 07/11/2009

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I was adopted at birth and I don't ever remember my parents sitting me down and breaking the big news to me. They always just told me that I was their gift from God. That a lady had me, but couldn't take care of me and they were so glad to get to have me in their home.



Now, we have a little baby in our home (along with our biological children - ages 7,8 and 9) who was placed here temporarily - kind of like foster, but we're friends of the family. The family has decided that they want us to keep her permanently so we're adopting. I plan to handle it the same way my parents did.



I think the danger in waiting and sitting the child down at an appropriate age to tell them is that even if you never did, they will feel that you lied to them by waiting to tell them. I just always knew - not all the details, though, until I was 17.

Susan - posted on 07/09/2009

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Hi! I fostered two newborns and ending up adopting them both. Since I thought they would be going back to their birth mothers I had to take them to visitation for the first months of their lives. This enabled me to have taken pictures of them with their birth mothers. I made a scrap book and once in awhile we look at the pictures. They are now 5 years old. I don't use the word "mother" when we look at the pictures. I told them that they grew in another woman's tummy and then I got to be their mommy. They understand they are adopted and my daughter will sometimes just pop out with a statement about me picking her out to be my daughter. :)

Sam - posted on 07/09/2009

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OH! Congratulatons! What a blessing you are to adopt from foster care.

I have been a foster mom and respite provider for 8 years. We adopted Jason just before his fourth birthday so he remembers a little. My daughter Dorothy (Dori) was adopted before her first birthday. Jason came at 5 months and was returned to him mom at age two to be returned to us 3 months later abused We fought 2 more years we finally adopted him. He had gone to another county with his mom. She appealed the first 2 years and won so when he was "pulled" the second time he went into the other county's jurisdiction and we would have never known. He was in anoher foster home and they had no record of what had happened in our county. Except for one thing. We had God and prayer on our side. When someone called the abuse hotline, the police had our address in the computer. They came to our home by accident. We were supposed to be away on vacation but we were detained by a leak in the bathroom. So we were home when the police came looking for him. We managed to get him back.



Our family is so grateful that God protected him. It is a miracle that God placed him with us and protected him from great harm and God who put him and us in the right place and the right time for him to be ours and us to be his. We celebrate GOCHA DAY by being giving thanks for him, he told his classmates his miracle story. He also goes out to eat and orders dessert first. He gets a little present It is the day special notes in his lunchbox. He knows how special he is to us. His friends at school wish they were adopted or are incllined to adopt someday as well. We never put down his mom because she did have him when she could have chosen not to. We always say an extra prayer for his biological parent on this day too.

I hope this helps. Celebrate how wonderful adoption is!

Amy - posted on 06/28/2009

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I read books about adoption (or books that mentioned adoption) to my daughter since she was a baby. We occassionally see her bm. My daughter is 4 and has just recently started to understand enough to ask questions (e.g., whose tummy was she in when she was a baby).

Robyn - posted on 06/11/2009

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We have a picture of my son's birthmom on our refrigerator. Before he even understood anything, we were telling him "That's S. She's your birthmommy." We have lots of books about adoption. I also created a storybook just for him that is HIS story. We would point out that the character in the book was adopted, just like he was adopted. Always talk about it, and they'll always know.

[deleted account]

I brought my daughter home when she was 6 days old, I started telling her about her birth story from day one, I intertwined the birth story with the adoption part right from the start. One book I read said that one issue adopted kids have is that they don't realize they are born as they only hear about being adopted! I found that very enlighting and made sure they went together. As my daughter aged and asked questions I answered her questions, she is now 19 and seems to be a normal teenager! She knows her birth and adoptive story and enjoys telling it herself. And my daughter looks like me, she has since she was little, people would have never realized she was adopted if we hadn't said so.

Leeannne - posted on 05/28/2009

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Im Australian, my husband is Canadian, his family is from the Ukraine and my family is scottish and my daughter is North American Indian! our family is one big melting pot :)

Leeannne - posted on 05/28/2009

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There has been a few times my daughter has asked if I was going to the store to buy a new tummy!
We also know many friends that have adopted kids so thats great too! having other kids like her will make it feel normal as she is getting older and she will not feel alone>

Leeannne - posted on 05/28/2009

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A friend of mine was 8 months pregnant & we were all sitting around chatting, the kids were running in and out of the living room so i thought this would be a good time to make her aware that babies came out of belly's :) my daughter was 3 at the time!
I called her over and said ' see aunty Christines belly" do you know why her belly is so big? "she has a baby in there! My daughters face was priceless.....My daughter kissed my friends belly and couldnt stop patting it and talking to the baby etc.
Then off she went back to playing with her friends!
On the way home I asked her " So who's belly do you think you were made in"?
My daughter: " aunty Lisa........grandma.....list list went on!
me: nope........your were made in Joradns belly!! she was so excited about that too!
then I said ' you know why you were made in Jordans belly"?
Because mummy's belly is broken.......you were made in mummy heart instead!
and when you came out of jordans belly you came home to live with mummy & daddy :)
It went so smooth and was much easier than I had expected!!
She now likes to ask me out of all her friends who is adopted, she goes through them all and when I say no to all she says......."so Im the only special one'? and I say "yep"

Jen - posted on 04/14/2009

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We were blessed to foster-adopt our son. We received him when he was 14 months old, and the adoption went final when he was 4. He is now 9. We ofter ask ourselves when will we decide to tell him. BUT, in our situation, he kind of knows. We have not told him nor any family members. I truley believe that he figured it out for himself. There are times when he will start talking about his first family he lived with, or returning to the city he was born in, or asking us when we got him.. Those sort of statements made us believe that he already knows. Now, he does not know the circumstances behind it, but I think when we finally sit him down and talk to him, it will make it easier for us.



I think telling them when they are young enough to kind of understand is a good start.

Elly_dormouse - posted on 04/13/2009

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You could try printing it then laminating. There's a good book on lifebooks too, Beth O'Malley, I think. It has lots of examples for those of us who are too creatively challenged to think of how to do it ourselves!

Amanda - posted on 04/13/2009

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I also get the adoptive families magazine and love it! They had an article in the April issue about making a little "story book" that is just about the story of that child's adoption. I haven't finished mine and I am not sure how to print it out, because my son is currently 19 months so I want it to be a board book if I can make it somehow. But I think that's a great idea. Make a book just about your child's adoption, with lots of photos if you have them, or drawings if you don't have pictures, and then simply put that book into rotation with all the rest of their books. Although them to drag it around and mess it up, which is unlike most of our photo albums. I can't wait to finish ours so that my son can start looking at it, because he loves to have us read to him over and over again.

good luck and congrats!

Karen - posted on 04/02/2009

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Hi Renee, Just talk about the word adoption from the beginning. They both knew they were adopted from an early age. My children are 9 and 7 and fairly well adjusted adout their adoption. We also have a group of friends who also adopted. Don't worry. Everything will fall into place. Just be honest with them from the beginning.

Linda - posted on 03/03/2009

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My husband and I just had it be something that was normal. She knew early on she was adopted. One day we sat down with her and told her that another mommy carried her in her tummy just for us. We showed her pictures of the mommy and tried to explain it to her. We made it bigger than what she did. When we finished talking, she said to me," Mommy give me a hug" I said thank you and why, she said "She had to go now and visit her other mommy". I said no and she laughed and said she was joking. For her it wasn't a big deal. We have a lot of friends with adopted children. Don't worry about it. It will all come together when it is time for everyone. Don't push it. I hope that was helpful.

Becki - posted on 02/28/2009

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Our social worker who did our homestudy gave us some great advice.  Her parents adopted her and her younger brother (different BMoms) at early ages, like before they were 2 yrs old.  She said that it was always known.  As they grew up, their parents told each some of what they knew about each's birth families when it was age-appropriate.  However, she said, by age 18, we, as parents should tell our children EVERYTHING we know about their birth family--the good, the bad, and the ugly.  No secrets.



We've taken that advice, and have always read adoption stories to Spencer and talked about it.  When a neighbor friend had a new baby brother, we talked about how Spencer (age 4 at the time) grew in another lady's tummy and she picked us to be his Mommy & Daddy.  He thinks it's cool. 



Hope that helps.

Tammy - posted on 02/28/2009

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Hi!



My little man is about to turn 5, and we've talked about it throughout his life, but I don't make a big deal about it. We were there when he was born and he's been with us always, so we really don't celebrate a "gotcha day." But I did tell him "his story" as a baby, and I "wrote" a book with his story in it  and made it a photobook on Shutterfly.com. We read it often - especially now that he's a little older and can start to understand it.



Congrats on your adoption! It's the most wonderful thing I've ever experienced!

Elly_dormouse - posted on 02/09/2009

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I show DS photos from the hospital. At the moment he is just happy to see pictures of mummy, daddy and 'a baby' (because he is 13 mos old and doesn't recognize himself!). We have adoption books and will talk about it, although I don't want to ram it down his throat, either. I get Adoptive Families magazine, and they have lots of helpful articles about talking about adoption at different developmental stages. I really recommend it.

Elly

Katie - posted on 02/07/2009

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My adopted daughter is from China, so she knows she looks different from us.  We celebrate her Gotcha day, with a charm for her bracelet.  We watch the video of our trip to China with the first moment we got her.  There are several books about international adoption, so at nap time we read her those.  Being a Christian we tell her about Moses, and how as Christians we are adopted into the body of Christ.  There are cartoons about adoption like "Meet the Robinsons", and " The Rescuers".  Being open with your child is the easiest.  Also, when they get to be about age four, you can explain that no matter who carried them in their tummy, you will always be their forever mommy.   Best Wishes!

Lynda - posted on 02/05/2009

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Hi - I am an adoptive mom and I myself am adopted.  My belief is always share it and talk about it. Buy books and read them stories. Never keep it a secret. If you can find out as much information about their birth family to hang on to - because one day they will ask where they came from and at least they will know you tried to gather some information to help them understand their lives. Being adopted is a wonderful thing - I was chosen by my parents and I only have one mom and dad. I have a birth family, but it will never be the same.



Adopting our two children 6 and 4 - I have the same views. They came through foster care and have been living with us for 6 months. We are talking about their birth family and foster family and reading them books on adoption to. We are very open to questions about their lives. Our 6 year old is much more aware of his past and we have to make sure he understands he is with his forever family and is not going any where else. I am collecting photos and letters from their past and will hang on to all of it for them so they can always have something to look back on when they are older.



Just be open and honest. All the best to you. Lynda

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