I’ve always been very open about my daughter being adopted. Through the years there have only been one or two people who didn’t understand why. My reason has always been very simple: there is no shame in it.
Some parents tell stories of where their children were conceived and even name them after those cities/places. Others talk openly about their struggle to conceive and their success through in vitro fertilization. No matter how a family is formed, there is nothing shameful about being a parent. And, regardless of the situation, there should never be any shame placed on a child because of the way they may have been conceived or become part of a family.
How To Inform The Child
When it comes to adoption, it is a family’s choice how they inform the child that he/she is adopted. I strongly believe that every child has the right to know if they happen to be adopted. Because of that belief, when my daughter was young, I often wondered how and when she would be told. She made it quite easy actually. When she was three or four years old, she asked me “Mommy, did it hurt when I came out of your stomach?” Instantly, I knew that was the opportunity.
Keeping her young age in mind, I realized the importance of answering her question with the best age-appropriate information possible. To her, it was a casual conversation. To me, it was a monumental moment in our family. It was such a defining moment in my role as her mother that I remember it with vivid details. This was one of those ‘I remember where I was when’ moments. She looked at me, waiting for an answer. I told her, “You didn’t actually come out of my stomach. You came out of another lady’s stomach and then she let your daddy and I be your parents”. I thank God for the words He gave me in that moment because I believe them to have been perfect! She said, “Okay” and that was that…for then.
The Questions Kept Coming
Her questions continued throughout the years; not often and sometimes years in between. The goal was always the same, to answer her honestly and with age-appropriate information. In hindsight, I consider that approach successful. We never gave more information than she asked for so as not to overwhelm her. We answered every question until she had no more at the moment. She was always made to feel comfortable asking questions. Neither one of us took her interest in her biological family as a slight toward us as her parents. At times it was hard for her to understand some of the answers and information. Watching her process her feelings and emotions during those times was painful. The only thing to do was love her through each answer and stage of revelation. God knew what He was doing when He allowed her to be conceived, to be born, and to be placed for adoption. With my whole heart, I believe that before her days on Earth are done, God will reveal to her His master plan for her life. Lord knows she was an answer to my prayers as a woman who could not have children. However, I know there are many more reasons for her existence. One day she will come to know why her family story was written this way. And, as has been the case along the way of this journey, God will continue to get the glory for what He has orchestrated!