Most parents would agree that parenting is the most challenging and most rewarding job that you will ever have. This is multiplied when your child comes to your family through adoption. What makes parenting a child through adoption more challenging are the issues of grief and loss. There are no adoptions that happen without a loss that occurs first.
Grief and Loss
Research tells us that even adoptive parents who take infants home from the hospital may still experience issues of grief and loss. Children being adopted from the child welfare system or an orphanage will likely also struggle with grief and loss, in addition to various stages of past trauma, some of which may be significant.
You can overcome this, however, by learning as much as possible and knowing when and how to get help. We have a tip sheet about grief and loss for children in adoption and foster care on our website. Visit wiadopt.org, click on the Resources tab and select Tip Sheets.
Adoption is a widely accepted means to build your family, but there are still many people who don’t fully understand it. When these people find out that adoption is a part of your story, they may ask thoughtful questions to broaden their awareness of the issues.
Others may ask questions that cause you to feel offended and may be inappropriate, especially if asked in front of your child.
Some of these questions include:
- Why did you adopt a boy (girl)?
- Can’t you have children of your own?
- Why did you adopt a child of another race? Don’t you want your kids to look like you?
- How much did your adoption cost?
- Aren’t you worried about attachment problems?
- Why did you adopt an older child?
- Why did you adopt from another country? or Why did you adopt from the U.S.?
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