Have these memes ever crossed your path on Facebook or other social media? I am not an overly-sensitive proponent of political correctness, but I do think that this type of negative humor associated with adoption perpetuates the stereotypes they represent and causes them to become ever more ingrained in our culture. Of course, as an adoptive mother, I am not a fan of negative adoption humor, and I know I can’t always protect my daughter from dumb jokes or ignorance on the part of others. I do think that we can and should help others understand the truth about adoption.
One small way is to encourage the use of positive adoption language. (Example: I am my daughter’s real mom. She does have a birth mother, or first mother as some prefer, and her birth mom has a place of honor in our hearts, but I most certainly am a real mom…just ask my daughter!) And, although I have nothing against pets, I am not a fan of the use of adoption language for them. Rescue an animal from a shelter, buy a pet…but, please, leave adoption for the human children in your home. We adopt everything from highways to garden spots these days, and although I know the word can accurately have multiple applications, its overuse is tiresome and annoying at best to me. Adoption is a beautiful, selfless way that a family can be formed, through great love and self-sacrifice. It is not a hidden secret. It should not cause shame or horror. Today, adoption is an open community of life and love. Adoption built our family. May we be positive ambassadors and help others understand what it really means.