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Does telling an adopted child a ‘good’ story eliminate pain, anger, sadness in their adoption?


Asked by adopteeme at 2:36 AM on Jul. 30, 2010 in Adoption

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Answers (18)
  • I don't think so.
    I'm adopting a child who was first my second cousin and then later became my brother. Glossing over everything that happened to him would be like minimizing the effects these events had on his life. I tell him everything that i can at an age appropriate level whenever he asks.

    Answer by outstandingLove at 3:02 AM on Jul. 30, 2010

  • Absolutely not. Telling them a good story about it just glosses over the fact that the adoption was necessary. As long as the child has a strong family support system in the adoptive family, finding out about the biological parents can be minimally damaging. There is always the chance of the child taking it hard, all you can do is support and love the child and help them understand.

    Answer by rhianna1708 at 2:47 AM on Jul. 30, 2010

  • OK so if by teling a good story you basically mean lie to the adoptee as they are growing up? I am 100% against lying to adoptee. and I am one. I believe they should be raised being told age appropriate information while being given unconditional love and support to work through any feelings they have about it. NO LIES, no pretty fairy tales.

    Answer by sati769leigh at 11:19 AM on Jul. 30, 2010

  • My DD is almost 6, and has been talking a bit more about why kids are adopted. After her birth mom showed up high and made a big scene while we were visiting, DD had questions and I felt that I had no choice but to explain (in age-appropriate terms) about drugs and how a baby/child cannot live in a home where someone is doing drugs. I emphasize that sometimes good people make bad decisions, but we still love them. We talk about how her birth mom and DS's birth mom still love them and have never stopped loving them. That's the kind of good story we tell our kids. We tell the truth, but try to emphasize the love everyone has for them.

    It is not my place to lie to my kids. I don't believe in doing that. No sugar-coated story will ensure that they will not grieve. I expect that my kids will grieve the loss of the chance to be raised in their bio families, and I know that doesn't mean they love us any less.

    Answer by Iamgr8teful at 10:37 PM on Jul. 30, 2010

  • From watching & listening to my Gr-daughter that has been adopted by a very good man but isn't a great Step-Dad, I think it's more important in how you TREAT the child than in any story. She knows the truth about her Dad and his drugs and being in jail, but she also feels the Step- Dad treats her differently than the 1/2 brother & sisters, this is what hurts her the most. She is happy she is adopted and away from her real Dad, for MANY reasons, but she just feels treated differently.

    Answer by MyAngel003 at 10:00 AM on Jul. 30, 2010

  • Telling the TRUTH in age-appropriate wording at times when the child is asking for more info is hopefully what will help the child to work thru the pain, anger, and sadness. Telling a "fairy tale" (if that is what you are calling a "good story", adopteeme, will only add to the confusion of the child. If the child finds out that he's been lied to by his adoptive parents, then he may lose trust in them and turn to birth parents or reject both sets altogether, leaving him/her feeling more alone and less understood by anyone.

    delilahsmom, I'm wondering if your BIL & SIL "don't seem to have any issues" because they were allowed to work thru them as children/teens/young adults? Perhaps there were questions, but they got the answers they needed? As an adoptive mom, I'd LOVE for my child to "not have any issues". I am wondering, though, if each adoptee works thru the issues in different ways or others had to suppress feelings??

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 12:37 PM on Jul. 30, 2010

  • I disagree. It sends across the message that grieving can only be done during the convenience of others, if at all.

    For example, telling a child "she loved you so much she gave you up" either sends across the message of "She didn't love you enough to keep you in the end" or "You shouldn't feel sad because she loved you."

    Which is kind of contradictory because hearing that a mother LOVES us but GIVES US UP makes no sense in the name of love. It goes against the logic of EVERY other relationship out there.

    Answer by Mei-Ling at 1:01 PM on Jul. 30, 2010

  • In our child's case the only "good" and "true" story was that her bmom loved her enough to know adoption was best for her and that we had prayed for months that God would give us a child that would love us as much as we would love them. Also we wanted a child that needed us as much as we could handle their challenges in life.

    As it turned out we were blessed with a beautiful musically, artistically talented girl with many physical and emotional challenges as could be imagined. But, God has always given us the answers to her questions when they were needed. Truth always.


    Answer by wannaBgreen at 1:04 PM on Jul. 31, 2010

  • Iamgr8teful, you are definitely my hero!

    I think it is entirely appropriate to acknowledge that your children's birth mothers' do love them, but also (in some cases) do have problems (nothing to do with DD/DS) that cause them to not be able to take care of the children that they have. I struggle with those who say to their innocent children "They loved their drugs more than you", or "they were too lazy to work their plans" (child hearing that they weren't worth the SMALL effort to reunite), or "If they love you, they would have.....".

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 5:24 PM on Jul. 31, 2010

  • DBF, aww, shucks! You're embarrassing me now! Seriously, though, I am always a little hesitant to talk about that because I don't want to give the impression that I think all (or even most) bmoms have that kind of problem. I felt like it would be worse to withhold the truth from DD after what she witnessed, because a child's imagination can get pretty wild. She might have worried that her bmom was dying from the way she was stumbling around with her eyes rolled back in her head. She was also asking why her older (bio) brother does not live with his mom anymore.

    With my younger brother having a mental illness (schizo-affective disorder), my kids are getting exposed to people who are different from them in lots of ways. We didn't plan it that way, but that's just how it is.

    It's just very important to me that my kids don't feel that they were placed with us b/c they were unloved.

    Answer by Iamgr8teful at 5:40 PM on Jul. 31, 2010