Things You Don’t Want to Say to an Adopted Child
Experts will tell you that communication with your adopted child is paramount. But there are some things that you should never say to an adopted child.
Don’t Ever Tell Your Child That They “Look Different” from the Rest of the Family
This can be unintentional. You tell your child that they don’t have certain family traits. It may be true, but it tells them that they are different and that they are not really part of the family. Physical appearance doesn’t have anything to do with really being a family, so leave it out of your discussions.
Don’t Tell Your Child That They Are Not Old Enough to Understand
When your adopted child asks questions, it can be scary, and the inclination can be to say, “you wouldn’t really understand…we’ll talk about that when you are older.” Unfortunately, when you don’t answer your child’s questions, they don’t stop thinking about them. What they’ll most likely do is try to come up with the answers on their own… they’ll frequently be wrong.
Don’t Ever Disparage Their Birth Parents
Your adopted child needs to have a positive image of his or her birth parents. The best thing you can say to your adopted child is that his or her birth parent loved him and made the decision to pursue adoption out of love. Don’t ever imply that you “saved” your adopted child from a difficult life, or that their birth parent did not or could not properly care for them.
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