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Should you tell a child he was adopted?

I'm curious at what your opinions are.

In our case it wasn't a full adoption it was a step parent adoption. I left my ex when my son was 6mth old(he became extremely abusive after our son was born, guess because he wasn't the center of attention anymore). I got counseling for my issues and then met my husband while my son was still very young. Ex hadn't seen the child or attempted since we left(he was required to have supervised visits, he did call me ONCE and stated he wanted to see the child so I told him Ok then get the visitation set up(with a visitation center) and he said "No I want to see you as well" I told him no and he never asked again.

Anyways we petitioned to have his rights terminated and after nearly 3 years of court(where he(ex) never fought it) we succeeded and finalized the adoption. Our son is nearly 6 now and of course doesn't remember biodad.

So should the child be told? If so when? And would your answer change if it was a full on adoption by a new family?

Answer Question

Asked by tntmom1027 at 2:17 PM on Aug. 28, 2013 in Adoption

Level 27 (31,955 Credits)
Answers (27)
  • I'd wait until they'd ask,then tell them the complete truth (based on age,and what they can handle)

    Answer by butterflyblue19 at 2:19 PM on Aug. 28, 2013

  • Yes. At least by adulthood. There may be biological reasons down the road that he may need that information. Before that it is up to you.

    Answer by Dardenella at 2:20 PM on Aug. 28, 2013

  • I think you should tell, no my answer wouldn't change if it were another kind of adoption, the sooner a child knows IMO the better it is fro everyone!

    Answer by 2kids2dogs2cats at 2:20 PM on Aug. 28, 2013

  • I think that, at some point, he'll need to be told if only because it's his history. But since he's in a happy, loving home now I'm not sure it's something you have to deal with immediately. Only you know when he might be mature enough to be able to process the information well because he'll inevitably have some thoughts of "why" bio dad didn't want to be part of his life.

    I think my answer is the same for a new family adoption.

    Answer by Mrs_Prissy at 2:20 PM on Aug. 28, 2013

  • I disagree with waiting to tell him. I think you need to start a dialogue right now about it. I think you can start talking about different kinds of families, then talk about your situation. I think waiting until he asks will end up with him feeling like you kept it a secret from him. And make sure to stress that his daddy is the best daddy because he chose to be a daddy to him, which makes him even more special.

    Answer by SleepingBeautee at 2:25 PM on Aug. 28, 2013

  • I am so torn on this issue
    I understand for biological reasons- IMHO complete family medical histories should be included in all adoptions
    I also understand the ""why bio dad didn't want to be part of his life".

    For some people that really hurts.
    i.e. That is how DS feels but DD thinks the guy should go fuck himself after paying half on her braces (because he said he would) .

    Answer by feralxat at 2:25 PM on Aug. 28, 2013

  • I'm sure the kid should be told. When and how you tell is up to you, but I would say probably sooner rather than later. There are books in the library that explain to young children what adoption is.

    Answer by Ballad at 2:25 PM on Aug. 28, 2013

  • I think that if you wait to tell him that it will be a HUGE shock. I think that you should start easing him into it as soon as you can. He doesn't need all of the details yet but he'll let you know when he does.

    I'd give the same advice for a child adopted by a new family. In both cases, the child needs to know that he was adopted by love.

    Answer by goldpandora at 2:27 PM on Aug. 28, 2013

  • He should be told .......maybe get some adoption books to read to start the conversations. There are some cute ones available. I have heard of many instances where the child was not told and how it led to disasterous problems as he/she grew older.....feeling of being lied to, etc. My answer would not change for any other circumstances. GL

    Answer by silverthreads at 2:38 PM on Aug. 28, 2013

  • He has a right to know. Kids will take their cues from us. If you keep it casual and remind him it won't affect or change your lives, he will find comfort. Give him the benefit of the doubt. Simply " I think you are old enough to trust you with something that until now I didn't tell you. " I didn't want to confuse you. Answer only what he asks without adding to it. They have simple minds.
    You could celebrate the day that your husband adopted him. I would bake a cake and tell him that you are celebrating how much he is loved. Take it from there, relax and keep it casual. If you are OK, he will be. Good luck. :-)

    Answer by LeJane at 2:47 PM on Aug. 28, 2013

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