I love the difference between kids and adults when they ask me questions about adoption. If you have kids you know that they are brutally honest and will say whatever is on their mind! The other night Aaron and I went on a date and I had on a “date night” dress if you know what I mean, and as I was walking out the door Amos looks at me and informs me that my dress is too small. 🙂 Love it!
I was picking the kids up from the gym the other day and these two girls that were black were both standing by the check out station so I started talking to them. Here's how our conversation went down:
Girl #1 – Where's their other mommy?
Me – You mean their daddy?
Girl #2 – No, where's their other mommy?
Me – They don't have another mommy they have just one mommy.
They both look very perplexed, so I realize I need to answer the question that I have now realized they are truly asking.
Me – oh you mean the mommy that they had before me?
Girl #2 – Yeah.
Girl #1 – Oh did she die.
Me – No his (pointing to Amos) mommy didn't die, she lives in Haiti.
Amos – Yeah I was born in Haiti.
Girl #1 – Oh you took him away from her.
Oh gracious this is more complicated then I thought and the guy working with the kids is looking uncomfortable at our conversation, although I'm not bothered by the questions one bit.
Me – No, we didn't take him away, we adopted him. Do you know what adoption means?
Girls – Yeah.
Me – Yeah and so now I'm his mommy forever. You guys have a good night. Bye!
Today while picking up my kids from VBS Amos' teacher saw me with the kids and after trying to figure it out asked if I was his mommy. I said yes and thanked her for loving on my kids all week. Here's how our conversation went:
Lady: while whispering and holding her had in front of her mouth – Does he know he's adopted?
Me: (thinking um ….yea … he's black and I'm white … I think he's noticed) Yes he does.
Lady: still whispering and holding her hand in front of her mouth – Is it okay to talk about?
Me: Yes they know they are adopted and we talk about it lots.
Lady: still whispering and holding hand in front of mouth – Are they all adopted?
Me: No, my oldest is biological.
Lady: Are the two from Haiti brother and sister?
Me: Now they are. Not biological though.
Children are much more comfortable just saying what they feel and asking what they want to know, where adults are more cautious with their words, which is probably a good thing! I truly don't mind talking about adoption at all if people are truly just curious and not trying to make a point or be rude.
I tried not to bust out laughing when the woman asked me if they knew they were adopted or not. That always cracks me up. I mean, how could they not know? They are black. I am white. 🙂 I guess if you never told them they would eventually ask, or maybe not. There's a question for you.
In conversations with my daughter about me being adopted se has coined her own term for it…
Jacee (my daughter) to my nephew: “where you kidnapped?”
Nephew: “what?!? No!”
Jacee: so you weren’t kidnapped? Kidnapped means you have 2 moms, one who loves and gave birth to you and one loves you and raises you.”
Me (gently because my daughter always confuses words and gets embarrassed when corrected…she’s 5) “Do you mean adopted Jacee?”
Jacee: “oh yeah! I always forget. The teacher said you probably weren’t kidnapped.”
My favorite is when my two boys (one white, one black) were standing in the line w/ me at church check-in. The lady asked how old they were. I responded “11”. She said, “Oh, are they twins?”
Jaime – I cracked up at your comment about if the kids know they are adopted. People ask me questions all the time about the twins and my favorite is, “are they identical?” and I am sure I have the same look on my face as you because one is a boy and one is a girl! NO! They are not identical! But I just politely say no – Too funny!
Hilarious! People are so funny but the woman hiding behind her hand was too much. We think it’s surprising when someone asks if they know, but I know someone who’s kid is about 7 and he still doesn’t know! Granted they are all Caucasian, but it was a Russian adoption. The kid might need to know that he was born in a different country!
both of those conversation made me laugh out loud. 🙂 p.s. love listening to you on the radio by the way! (I would have probably never tuned to KVET before, but now I do.)
Funny stories, sometimes I like to confuse people more…They’ll look confused and ask if Mo is adopted and I say no. -…cause he’s not…yet. Then after a good pause I’ll finish the sentence with “but we’re working on it”.
and @julie! I’ve so gotten the same question about our ebony and ivory kids that are the same size (though a yr apart). Oh your twins are so cute!! (I’m gonna pretend you didn’t just say that).
This post & the comments were a great way to start my day! Our two oldest are caucasion/bio kids, and our 4-year-old was born in India. We’ve had that same kind of question: “When are you going to tell her she’s adopted?” Seriously?!
The other funny one was when someone had just asked us how old she was when she came home (her 1st birthday), then asked “Will she have an accent when she grows up?” Wha?
You’re right — kids are usually way more straightforward. An Indian-American boy at our kids’ school saw me with all of our kids and asked, “Are you a babysitter?” Then he warmed my heart — after we explained that she had birthparents who couldn’t care for her, so they found a family who could, he said, “Mom, can we adopt a sister from India too?” Melted me right up!