Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Talking With Children About Adoption


By Barbara Russell

Talking about adoption with your child can be daunting. Here, advice on what to say and when to say it.


Catherine Brunson clearly remembers the day she learned she was adopted. “Someone approached my brother in school and said, ‘Oh, you’re the adopted kid,’” says Brunson, a 37-year-old graphic designer in Charlotte, NC, who is the oldest of three adopted siblings. “My brother came home and asked my mom.”

“My mom took both of us by the hand and proceeded to take us in the bedroom and tell us the facts of life,” she says. “While we stood there, she went through the whole thing — the birth process, etc. Then she segued into how this happened to someone else, not to her and Dad.”

“We were looking at each other going, ‘Wow.’”

Misguided? Comical? Potentially harmful? Perhaps, by today’s standards. Effective? Definitely, according to Brunson, who says the incident was key to helping her develop a matter-of-fact attitude about her adoption.

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