Monday, March 08, 2010

Positive Adoption Language

The way we talk, and the words we choose, say a lot about what we think and value. When we use positive adoption language, we say that adoption is a way to build a family just as birth is. Both are important but one is not more important than the other.

Choose the following positive adoption language instead of the negative talk that helps perpetuate the myth that adoption is second best. By using positive adoption language, you'll reflect the true nature of adoption, free of innuendo.

When describing family relationships:

Use terms such as:
  • "Birth parent," "birth mother," and "birth father" to describe the man and woman who conceived and gave birth to the child. All of us have birth parents. However, not all of us live in their custody.
  • "Parent," "mother," "father," "mommy," "daddy," and "child" to describe the members of the adoptive family. It is not necessary to say "adopted child" or "adoptive parent" unless the situation specifically centers on adoption.

Avoid terms such as:
  • "Real parent," "real mother," "real father," and "real family" -- these terms imply that adoptive relationships are artificial and temporary.
  • "Natural parent," "natural child," and "one of your own" -- these terms imply that because they are not blood-related, the relationships in an adoptive family are not as strong or lasting as relationships by birth.

When describing the adoption process:

Use terms such as:
  • "Make an adoption plan" or "choose adoption" -- these terms acknowledge that the birth parents were responsible and in control of their decision.
  • "Parent her child" -- when a birth parent decides not to choose adoption.
Avoid terms such as:
  • "Abandoned," "surrendered," "released," "relinquished," "gave up for adoption," "adopted out," or "put up for adoption."
  • "Keep her child" -- this implies the child is a possession and ignores the responsibilities of parenting.

We have chosen to build our family through adoption. She is "ours", we are hers, we are an adoptive family.

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Our Adoption Timeline:

Begin Home Study:
August 10, 2009
Liu Chun Tian
Referral Photos:
August 19, 2009
Letter Of Intent:
August 24, 2009
September 2, 2009
(in 9 days)
Home Study Completed:
October 5, 2009
I-800A Sent:
October 6. 2009
Immigration Approval:
November 19, 2009
(in 45 days)
Dossier To China:
December 18, 2009
Log In Date:
December 31, 2009
(in 13 days)
~Happy New Year~
Letter Of Approval:
(in 74 days)
I-800 Sent:
I-800 Approval:
Cabled 4-7-2010
Article 5
Picked Up 5-4-2010
Travel Approval:
Leaving On A Jet Plane:
June 12, 2010
Forever Family Day:
American Citizenship:
July 4th, 2010