How Transracial Adoptees Navigate Race as they Age
How do transracial adoptees develop a racial identity? How can parents help their transracially adopted children grow into strong heathy adults? Host Dawn Davenport, Executive Director of Creating a Family, the national infertility & adoption education and support nonprofit, interviews Dr. Gina Samuels about how transracial adoptees navigate race as they age.
- We are talking about all types of transracial adoption: white parents adopting children of color, as well as people of color adopting children of different ethnicities.
- Let’s walk through how typical kids of all races develop an awareness of race.
- How old are kids when they notice race?
- How old are kids when they realize that they are a different race than their parents?
- How do young children internalize this difference?
- How does racial awareness and identity differ for a child being raised by a family of another race?
- Does racial identity and awareness differ if you are of the majority race or minority race? White people often say that they are not aware of their race or don’t identify with any race.
- At what point do kids begin to understand the subtler forms of discrimination such as white privilege and institutional racism? What do we mean by these terms?
- What should adoptive parents do to help their child with white privilege?
- How should parents handle their black daughter who prefers to play with white dolls?
- What are some of the particular challenges for kids in transracial adoptive families in navigating race?
- Things for white parents to be aware of (that they may not be aware of because they have not personally experienced it):
- Black children are perceived as older than they are. How does this impact kids?
- The fetishized attraction of some white men to Asian girls and women.
- What are some of the advantages to the child of being adopted transracially?
- We get a lot of questions from parents on how to prepare their children of color to interact with law enforcement or other authority figures.
- Are we making our kids more aware of racism and making them paranoid by talking about racism with them?
- What is evidence of a confused or unhealthy racial identity?
- How to get our kids to talk about race with us?
- Tips for transracial parents.
Image credit: Dylan Walters