What I Want You To Know About Adoption

I want you to know that you are not invited to the airport when we come home. I cannot even deal with these airport arrival parties. I’m not really into big groups of excited white people to begin with. Let them start clapping and cheering, and I’m totally out. Like, peace sign in the air as I walk away totally out. While this is super exciting, it’s also totally terrifying for our child. We will have just taken him away from everyone and everything he knows. So, riding down an escalator into a group of crazy, smiling, clapping, cheering, excited white people sounds like a terrible first move.

I want you to know that we chose adoption. Our child did not. Our son has been through more pain, loss, and abandonment than I will ever go through in my entire lifetime. All of that pain and loss is what led to adoption. He isn’t “so lucky to be adopted” and this most certainly wasn’t “God’s plan for him.” God’s plan for him was to be loved by his biological family forever. He was never intended to be mine. So, while adoption is a beautiful, redemptive, Jesus filled thing it comes at the cost of sadness, grief, loss, abandonment, and pain. Please keep that in mind as you form sentences out loud and in your mind about adoption.

I want you to know that the following questions make me want to punch you in the throat:

“So are you ever going to have your own kids?” When you emphasize the word own, I die a little on the inside. While I know what you mean and the answer to that question is, “I don’t know,” this kid will be our OWN. Stop it.

“Are you infertile?” or some variation of this question that implies that we can’t have kids or are having sex wrong. First of all, this question and the likes are wildly inappropriate. They should not be asked: in passing, in the teacher’s lounge while making copies, in front of people you don’t know, or in a nonchalant way. Trust me, we are having sex correctly and while we are not adopting because we are infertile, we do have friends who are adopting for that very reason. Second of all, these kinds of questions are hurtful and stupid. Don’t be an idiot.

“Will your child be black?” ohmygoshyes

I want you to know that it’s okay if you don’t know what to say to us but saying and asking nothing makes me reevaluate our friendship. We love talking about adoption, the process, and why we are adopting. This is a huge thing for us and we want to talk about it. Please ask us questions. I don’t particularly care if you even care about the answers to these questions. Just ask them because you don’t want us to go insane. Here are some questions that when asked make a girl want to hug you:

How’s the process going?

How can we be praying?

Do you need some wine?

Do you want to talk about adoption stuff?

I want you to know that I’d rather do all kinds of things than listen to your stories of adoptions gone bad. Here’s an incomplete list of some of the things I’d rather do: die a slow death, cut my arm tendon like that guy in 127 Hours, pull my hair out one piece at a time, or give myself an Indian rug burn. This sort of storytelling is not helpful in any way right now.

I want you to know that we are aware that we will be a transracial family. There is no need to point it out. Your kind and respectful questions about race, culture and how we plan to tackle this are lovely and welcomed. We have been reading and learning a lot about race and culture and would love to have a conversation about it all. We, however, do not want to talk to you if you have unkind things to say about people of different races or if you begin sentences with, “I’m not racist but…”

I want you to know that I secretly hope all our friends will adopt. Just kidding. Not really.

I want you to know that the best thing in the world right now is prayers. This whole adoption thing has made me believe fully in the power of prayer. Like, on your knees prayers. Prayers move mountains, literally. So, when you tell us you’re praying, I’m sending you a heart hug because heart hugs are the best and so is Jesus and so is praying.



  1. You are so ready to do this. I agree that the big airport scenes are inappropriate ! I can meet my cousin later. I have been praying but give me specifics and I will lift them up. I love you, pat

  2. We are praying for ALL of you………as an adoptive parent, I understand all the pain and frustration of “well-meaning” questions and discussions” that can drive you nuts!! We look forward to meeting this little guy!! Love, Cindi

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