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etiquette lesson

Today...a lesson is etiquette.
i've written before about some of the stupid things people say to me and the fam and how frustrating it can be. (we know that she's black and we're not, btw)

so's proper adoption language.

mom vs. real mom vs. birth mom
I'm my kids Mom...the woman who carried, loved and birthed her and chose adoption for her, she's her birthmom. (i promise you i'm real)

i have 4 daughters...they are all my children. i don't have any of "my own". all of my kiddos are mine. i do have 2 children i birthed and 2 children that are adopted.

parents do not 'give up' their children. this one gets to me. no

parent ever just gives up a child. either a parent chooses adoption as a placement or their parental rights were terminated and the child is available for adoption.

if a child is adopted from another country, the child is not foreign, but the child is adopted from abroad.

my kids have ears...they understand what people say, so if you have questions about why we all look different, tell me that you are interested in adoption and would like to talk about it. then, we can do that without having the kiddos feel awkward.

adoption is's not the norm. please don't try to make an adopted child feel special for the choice their birthparent made for them. it's hard when kids are different.

my kiddos birthparents are involved in their lives. they are good peeps. but you really don't need to know that unless you are sincerely asking about adoption.

i don't ask you how you got pregnant with your kids or how many cigs you smoke or if you ever did drugs in your life, so please don't assume OR ASK if my children's birthparents were addicts. first, it's none of your business. second, you really don't need to know. third, it's just rude. don't ask.

birthmom's rock the planet. if you've ever carried a child, you know how much love it would take to hand that child to another family and know that it's the best for the child. it's absolutely not self serving...not a cop out...not anything but a very, very difficult decision and choice.

so, you wanna know what love looks like? this is it. this is b and her birthmom, brit. brit is amazing!!! we love her soo much. she's def part of the fam and one of my kiddos now. we see her about every 4-6 weeks now and talk frequently on the phone. she's as much of our lives as b is.

and knowing that God really does have a sense of humor, that's not me in the pic, it's brit. yep...crazy nuts how much we look alike. this is b's bowling party for her #5!

for a list of proper adoption language from a real source, go to adoptive families.

dont' forget...National Adoption Awareness Month!!!


Lori said…
it's interesting to see/hear how people think your life is an open book and they can say/ask anything they want without thinking of the consequences
Heather said…
Oh amen to this post! As both a mom through adoption and an adoptee myself, I especially agree with these two:

"adoption is's not the norm. please don't try to make an adopted child feel special for the choice their birthparent made for them. it's hard when kids are different."

"i don't ask you how you got pregnant with your kids or how many cigs you smoke or if you ever did drugs in your life, so please don't assume OR ASK if my children's birthparents were addicts. first, it's none of your business. second, you really don't need to know. third, it's just rude. don't ask."

Thanks for writing this post! You rock!
auntie said…
great post!!
Anonymous said…
there are so many things that you just CAN'T IMAGINE until it happens to you.

Anonymous said…

one more comment.

it seems as though the ones who feel entitled to an explanation into YOUR life are suffering from stupidity.
lori said…
That WAS great!! It amazes me what people will come out with, really it does...Adoptive parents are just amazing and those girls or women who chose adoption DID make a choice that had to be difficult...

ANYWAY....I'm going to have to POST PICTURES of just how SERIOUS my paper addiction is...It's comical feeling is that it's PAPER, no harm to anyone...except a few trees..but I can always plant more, right??

Yes, so it's great to meet a fellow paper addict! We MUST unite!! HA! :)

I just had to come over and say hello...
Jen said…
that was a great post, I loved what you said about birth mom's. it is so true, they are truly self-less people to do such a thing like that.
Unknown said…
Great post - Adoption is different and can be difficult, understanding is the key.

You totally Rock National Adoption Awareness Month!!
Abby said…
Girl you need to print some of these rules out so those of us who have uniquely beautiful adoptive families can hand them out to some of the idiots oops sorry uninformed people that makes these comments!

The worst I ever got was you mean to say her real mom didn't even want her?

Let me tell you it took all the energy I had to not slap her!
Tabitha Blue said…
Such a beautiful post and so good to hear! I'm sure you really do hear all sorts of things, and I apologize on behalf of all the people that talk before thinking. I think it's amazing what you do (and hopefully I don't offend you here), but it seems that you just have such a big heart! I've never really thought about adoption before... now, after reading your blog... I have a little. I guess I'm just trying to say that I appreciate your family life and it's so beautiful to see!
Wep said…
Totally true. Great post. As a aunt to children who were adopted, the term adopted applies to that DAY. Then the kids are just yours.

The boys did refer to the day I married my husband as the day we "adopted" Uncle Jason.
Karen said…
Fantastic post. You know I agree with you, girl. The stories we could share......My oldest came home a month ago and told me I wasn't her "real" mom. She was so crushed. We are still workin' through it.

Reading Wep's comment makes me think of how my kids talk about the day they were adopted. The refer to it as the day we got married. I love that.
Kacey said…
This was a FABULOUS post! It's crazy what some people come up with. Sometimes I am just shocked in general at how rude some people can be. We get crazy comments just because we have three little would really laugh at some of the things people say. Maybe I'll post about it. Ha! Ha! Thanks again for the great read and sharing about your beautiful family.
Thanks for posting this. Some of them, I thought 'seriously, someone said this to you?!' but some of them, I could've said myself, not knowing they were offensive.
Mozi Esme said…
Thanks for getting the word out! We've been considering adoption here, but NOW doesn't seem to be the right time for us. It's nice to see your perspective on things.
AndreaLeigh said…
Awesome post and thanks for sharing! Just visiting from SITS. You have a beautiful family!
merc3069 said…
popped over from SITS--love the blog. Good for you. Thanks for sharing your story.
Michelle said…
Thanks for spreading awareness! I admit to having said the phrase "gave up for adoption." I didn't think it sounded quite "right" to say it, but honestly didn't know what was the right/better thing to say - and that's all you hear all the time is "gave up" ... so thank you for showing me the better way to refer to a child being adopted!

How nice that you have such a special, open, relationship with her birth mom too...she's one lucky little girl!
CntryMomma said…
Very informative! And "the kiss" picture make me get all misty eyed. :o/

Deb said…
wow, this is very, very interesting. it's about time somebody just laid it all out there for people. thank you!

i have not adopted any kids, BUT, i am adopted. things have really changed in 40 years. thank goodness.

good for you. beautiful girls you have.
Young Momma said…
I wanted to e-mail you but can't find a link for it... I may just be missing it though.

Anyway. I wanted to let you know that I loved this. My mom put her son up for adoption in the 70's and there's been a whole path of things in my life attached to it. I'm 13 years his junior.

My SIL also recently adopted a little girl. I'm going to pass this post along to her - it'll definitely make her smile.

I do have a couple of questions for you though - honest, hopefully not rude - about open adoption. If your willing to answer, my e-mail is
Robin said…
I came over to your site from another blog I have been following & want to tell you I love your adoption language entry!! We are in the process of adopting from Korea & hope to pick our little guy up in August or September. This is our first child & have not had any experience yet with how rude people can be... but have heard many stories. I loved it!! Well said!
Just going to say AMEN ... I have two daughters that were born in China and when people ask in front of them are THEY REAL sisters, I want to scream and go no they are fabricatied ... Of course they are real sisters and I am their real mother and those are their real brothers and you are a REAL #%% ! But God might not like that, so I politely say yes and keep on walking before they ask another stupid question !!!

Great tribute to BM ... I have had the privledge to foster several babies and when I did get to meet the BM I just hugged her neck and thought what a loving person and amazingly strong woman !!!

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