I was adopted from India at two years old into a wonderful family. Growing up in a predominately “white” area as the oldest child in a Spanish family caused a few heads to turn, and naturally people were curious about my story.
A boy in school made me break into tears by saying the following: “If you’re adopted, then your birth mom didn’t love you and wanted to get rid of you.” I’ll pray for your remaining brain cells because there’s obviously not much up there, Kevin.
I am by no means saying that every person I’ve come across has been outwardly rude or judgmental while asking about my adoption but I’ve noticed that the more people try to be polite, the more ignorant they sound. It comes from a good place; however, there is a lot of room for growth. The following are some common questions I’ve received concerning my interracial adoption and why they sound ignorant.
1. Do you miss your real parents?
Umm…no? My mom calls me at least once a day. There’s a HUGE difference between being a “real” parent and a birth parent. My adoptive parents ARE my real parents and I thankful for the sacrifice my birth mother made for my well-being.
2. Do you want to meet your real parents?
If I got the chance to meet them, personally, I would take it. There are people though that are not at all interested in meeting their BIRTH parents and that’s OK, too. DON’T PRY.
3. You’re adopted? I’m so sorry.
You’re sorry that I grew up in loving middle class family? Okay. Perhaps, apologizing for your ignorance is a better idea.
4. Is that your boyfriend? (referring to my brother)
No, we’re related. *cue confused faces*
5. Why were you given up for adoption?
Your guess is as good as mine but don’t guess because that’s rude and invasive. The reason why someone is given up for adoption is sometimes a complete mystery. It’s not exactly something I want to talk about either; I’m happy where I ended up.
6. What if you have siblings that you don’t know about?
That’s definitely a possibility but there’s not much I can do about that is there?
7. Do you ever feel that your parents love your siblings more than you?
Sure but who doesn’t at some point? Adopted or not. To this day I’m still taken aback by this question. My parents obviously love me or else they wouldn’t have gone halfway across the world to get me.
8. Is your (birthday, name, weight when born, city of birth) correct?
Questions like this make me cringe more so than the rest. Considering that my birth mom surrendered me to the orphanage, I’d say my information was correct. However, not everyone was in the same situation and by asking them if their basic information is correct is rude and demeaning.
I’ve never had any problems answering questions because I want people to understand the process, but before asking questions, think about what you’re going to say!