Talking with Kids about Adoption
Many parents fear having “the adoption talk.” They worry that it will be awkward, that it will make their child feel less special, that they should have done it sooner, or that they will make a mistake that will permanently damage their precious child. No need to worry, we are here to help.
Talking with kids about adoption is not a one-time event. Rome was not built in a day, nor is adoption explained all at once. Parents must gear their information to the age and developmental stage of their child.
Two of the best ways to begin the conversation and become more comfortable with the conversation are:
- Reading books about adoption to your children. We have an extensive list and reviews of the best adoption books for kids, and we break them out by type of adoption and age of the child.
- Creating a Lifebook for your child.
Check out the following Creating a Family resources to help you get started:
Creating a Family has many resources on how kids understand adoption at different ages and how to talk about adoption with kids to help you every step of the way. A few we think you will find particularly helpful are:
- Building the Framework for Adopted & Foster Children to Process the Hard Parts of Their Stories (article)
- Positive Adoption Language & Why It Matters (article)
- Tips for Talking with Tweens and Teens About Adoption (article)
- Talking About Adoption, Part 1: 0-5-Year-Olds; Talking About Adoption, Part 2: 6-12-Year-Olds; Talking About Adoption, Part 3: Talking with Tweens and Teens (3-part article series)
- Talking with Young Children About Adoption and Birth Parents (1 hr. podcast w/ expert)
- Talking with Your Adopted or Foster Child About the Hard Parts of Their Story (1 hr. podcast w/ expert)
- Suggested Books for Talking to Kids About Birthparents
Many more Creating a Family interviews with experts, blogs, and fact sheets on talking with adopted children about adoption can be found at the icons below.