Parenting Vivian | 26 Nov 2010 03:39 pm

How to Explain Adoption to Your Children

Most parents, when it comes to talking to their adopted children about the fact that they are adopted, feel bewildered about what to say and how to set about the task of explaining everything accurately. You need not be anxious about giving the perfect explanation the very first time. If you fail to handle your child抯 questions satisfactorily on the first occasion, return to the discussion some other time and try to be more definitive.

One of the recurrent fears that adoptive parents’ have is that their children will not consider them to be their “real” parents. Children often refer to their birth mother as their 搑eal?one. It is imperative not to react excessively or dramatize the use of the term. This will only impede open conversation. Instead, explain to them that just as giving birth from the womb is a reality, taking care, feeding and playing with the children are also things that real mothers do. Ask them to think of the 搑eal?mothers of their friends, who do all these things with her kids. This way, they will understand that the woman, that is, you, who is nurturing and caring for them is as much of a mother as the person who gave birth to them.

The most vital item that your children will preserve is their sensation in relation to holding the conversation with you. So you need to be approachable and quick to respond. If you can impart to them a sense of corroborating their thought process, easier it would be to enable them to understand any new facts in due course. Ask questions – try to find out what they feel about the subject of discussion. Encourage them to arrive at the solutions to their dilemmas themselves, through conversations with you. Correct any misunderstandings or false impression. Enquire if they want to clarify something. You need not tell them everything but do answer every question they might have. Young children usually seek information in bits and pieces, they fail to grasp a whole concept all together at one time. They ask one question, mull over what they hear in answer, and later return with more queries. Remember to ask them what they have concluded from the discussion that you had previously. This will help to dispel any misconstructions. Holding repeated dialogues will give you confidence and a clear idea about everything that they want to discern, and also about all that you want to communicate.

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