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4 Bumps

***Closed Adoptions*** How long did you let your child call you your first name after placement or finalization? Did you let the child change it to mommy and daddy (or whatever you are to be called)?

I just want to see what other people have done!

How long before you made them call you mommy and daddy (or whatever)? Did you ever force it???

What did/do you refer to the birth parents as when refering to them? What do you allow the child to refer to them as? Do you allow them to say "real mommy"?

I am just 100% curious as to how other people handled these most likely very common happenings.


Asked by Anonymous at 1:32 AM on Jun. 30, 2010 in Adoption

This question is closed.
Answers (7)
  • (con't) I wouldn't want to talk ill of her, especially where the child might "overhear". The child will think that they are "bad" because their birth mom was "bad". If we are thankful for the children in our care & are committed to their well-being, even when they don't match our pre-conceived notions of what they should do or be, (because they may not fill that certain idea that we were thinking of) and just love them to pieces, but allow THEM time to grieve the loss of their original family, the trauma that led up to that loss, & encourage them to express the feelings that may have buried since before they came to us, then we'll be that far ahead.

    You sound like someone who is in love with the child/ren that she's adopted, and I would encourage you to continue to ask questions about how this "special" kind of adoption might affect them when they are older.

    Congratulations on it being final! :)

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 7:56 PM on Jun. 30, 2010

  • Don't force it! Let them get used to the idea and decide what to call you on their own. And how old the child is affects how the birth parents should be addressed. If they remember the birth parents, call them that, birth parents. Biomom/biodad works well. If they are too young to remember them and are later told about the adoption, I would suggest calling them by name if you know it, birth parents works if you don't.

    Answer by rhianna1708 at 2:32 AM on Jun. 30, 2010

  • I adopted my step son... When his birthmom left for the last time he was 2yrs old... But she had left before and then changed her mind after a few months, so we referred to me as "Lyssa" for a long time. We wanted to be sure that she was really not coming back because we didn't want to confuse him, AND because we knew she would flip out a supervised visit if she heard anyone call me "Mommy"... My son didn't start really talking until after his first two brain surgeries. By then she'd been gone for over a year and I was READY to be called MOM. In fact it was a great source of tension for our family, since I had raised him as my own since 6mos but my husband was so scared of bmom that we kept calling me Lyssa to him. When my son did say my name for the first time, he was 4 yrs old and he said "Mommy"! He decided himself. He never did call me "Lyssa" I was his Mommy and he knew it, and he told me as soon as he could! :)

    Answer by Elyssa414 at 4:40 PM on Jun. 30, 2010

  • Since you are legally their mom and dad, I would tell them to call you that, although I wouldn't "force it" just gently remind them. I think it would also allay their fears that you aren't permanent and reassure them that they are going to be with your forever. I think the word "real" doesn't belong in adoption. If they use that word I would say, "they are birth mommy and daddy and we are your adoptive mommy and daddy, we are both very real, and you are really our children." I'm not an adoptive parent and know little of CPS adoptions so that's just my opinion.

    Answer by onethentwins at 12:49 PM on Jun. 30, 2010

  • Both my boys were young enough that they always knew us as mommy and daddy. With my oldest, we just use the names of his birth parents. I have always told him that he grew in _____'s belly. One day he asked me who his dad was when he was born, so I told him the name of his biodad. Seems to work for now. If we cross the real mommy/daddy topic, I will tell him that I am his real mommy, just like ___ was his real mommy. He's very lucky to have both of us. We do letters, but that's as open as we have our adoptions.

    Answer by jothra at 4:33 AM on Jun. 30, 2010

  • I'm a foster parent, and children are allowed to call us whatever they wish (except a curse word). Many younger children will say mommy or daddy, just because it's "easier" to remember. We did a respite care situation once, and while I was going to say my name to them, the worker introduced me as "Mommy". If they are moved around a lot, it's a lot easier to know the JOB TITLE of Mommy & Daddy, so to speak, (like Officer or Mister) than Susie, Bill, George, Franklin, Mary Ellen, etc. There is only so much that their minds can hold. It doesn't take the place of their own mommy or daddy.

    Older children may call us by our first names and if they were adopted, it's up to them. We raised a niece who called me Mom or Aunt depending on who was around or her mood. It's easier to say "mom" and seem "normal" to your friends, than to have to explain your home life to someone you've just met. I hope this makes sense.

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 9:17 AM on Jun. 30, 2010

  • I did want to add that I'd never "force" a child to call me mom. The adoption doesn't erase the birth family's relationship with the child. In order to call you mom they have to (depending on their age) process that their birth mom is what? Not their mom? Didn't love them? They were too bad & broke up the family? Sometimes, there is a fierce loyalty to birth mom especially if the child was in her care until they could understand or talk. There's a fine line between showing permanency and erasing their past.

    Now, according to the state you ARE mom. But if you want your adopted child to love & respect you, let it develop naturally as you would with a birth child. Sometimes we expect children to feel "grateful" that they are no longer in that "bad" situation, but they may not realize that it was bad. It was their normal. I'd be honest about bmom not "being able" to care for them, but that she loved them despite her issues.

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 7:43 PM on Jun. 30, 2010