Do you know this?

There are approximately 18000 parents registered with CARA, while the number of children in the Government's adoption pool is less 1800.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

How to start and talk positively about the birth family? (Q and A)

Yesterday I talked about my encounter with an adoptee that advised me not to panic when my children ask about their birth families. I elaborated on by saying you can talk positively to your child around the facts that you know of.

First and foremost, you should be comfortable to talk about this issue with your child. If you have issues of insecurity, I suggest that you address those issues first before you attempt to help your child.

Easiest way to getting to talk about birth families is starting young (preferably below the age of 2 years). It is helpful for your child to grow up with the fact that they have two mommies. You can name the birth mom in anyway that you feel comfortable such as ‘Tummy Mommy’, ‘Birth Mommy, and ‘First Mommy’ etc. If your child has already passed that age, don’t panic but you need to start talking about it. Make sure that only you (or your spouse) talk about this topic to your child and no one else.

Once you know that you’ve started it, avoid asking questions that elicit yes/ no answers such as “do you like your birth mom?” because once they answer (by saying yes/ no), then you’ll have to come up another question so engage them in conversations by asking open ended questions such as “what do you think your birth mom would think about your birthday?” Allow your child to be imaginative to think whatever they want. If you find their thinking is inappropriate you can always correct them but almost always they come up with cute answers.

Use your family/ friends that are expecting a baby to tell about your child’s birth mom. If your friends/ family allow, help them to feel the kicking of the baby and then relate that to your child “probably you too used to kick like this when you were in mommy’s tummy”.

Never say anything that is not true. For example, if you do not know the circumstances of your child coming to be placed for adoption, don’t make up something just to make your child feel better. Whenever they come to know the truth, they can develop distrust in you. If you do not know the exact details, it is ok to say, “I don’t know”. If you do know the facts, try to be creative enough to be positive. For example, you can say “I think your mother loved you so much that she brought you carefully and gave you to the orphanage”

Always recognize and respect the dignity of your child and do not over do anything. Always talk about these things when you’re by yourself and the best place to do it is in the bed while your child is in your arms. It is your love and comfort that will make something as difficult as birth family will make it easy on your child.


1 comment:

Lynn said...

thnx.. I will be using your advice soon...