Adoption brings a great deal of joy and happiness to any family. Love can certainly make a difference, but sometimes with the enthusiasm comes some aggravation, caused by people making rash decisions and comments. Adoptive parents want only what’s best for their child, but sometimes things are said and done without thinking. As an adoptive parent, you should know there are some things you should never do!
1. Don't talk about your adopted child being "different" from the rest of the family.
Although this may seem obvious, it’s important to mention it so you're always mindful of it and avoid phrases that could potentially hurt your child. If you have biological children, don't compare them to your adopted child based on their looks, behavior, race, or anything else. This can leave big emotional scars and a constant need for proving.
2. Don't expect special treatment because you adopted.
Some adoptive parents think higher of themselves or expect others to think higher of them because they adopted, which is definitely a wrong reason to adopt. Adoption is just another beautiful way of creating a family. It brings with it everything that a birth brings: the same feelings, fears, and desires are experienced. You should feel right with the fact that you’ve successfully grown your family without feeling the need for special recognition.
3. Don't act like your adopted child didn't have parents before you.
Even though adoption afforded you the wonderful opportunity to grow your family, the same opportunity meant a huge sacrifice and loss for your child's birthparents. It’s not healthy to ignore this fact because it can only bring damage to everyone involved in an adoption process. Not acknowledging your child's first parents is disrespectful not only to your child's birth parents but also to your child.
4. Don't keep adoption a secret.
Adopted children need to know where they come from and who their birth parents are, even in a closed adoption. If children don't have a clear picture of where they are from, they can grow up feeling incomplete or even feel the need to start a search for their birthparents. This is just a natural need, so it’s best to be open with them from the start so they always know they're adopted and where they come from.
5. Don't think of your child as your adopted child.
It is unfair to present your child to someone or refer to him or her as your adopted child. This conveys the idea that you have not yet accepted him or her as a part of your family. Your adopted child is simply your child, pure and simple.