Adoption and Back to School

We teach our adoptive parents that their child’s adoption story is their own, theirs to learn about and share with whom they want, when they want. We teach our families to tell their child about his/her story in an age-appropriate manner, giving them the details of their, sometimes hard, story at a time when they can appropriately process the information.

As each school year starts, families are often given a “get to know your child” form to fill out and turn into the teacher. This presents a dilemma – should the parent share that the child is adopted right off the bat? What a great time for the child to learn that s/he has control over the type of and amount of information is shared. Let the child have a voice in the decision to disclose. Ask them if they want to tell their teachers that they are adopted, or would they like to share that information throughout the year on their own time frame, or not at all? Is this information the teachers even need to know? You may be surprised to find that some years they want the news shared, while other years, they won’t. With each year, respect the child’s choice in whom they tell and what they tell.

How do you handle this topic as each new school year approaches?

Reference: Back-To-School Tips for Adoptive Parents