Creating a family is worth celebrating, not just for new parents on the maternity floor of a hospital, but also for adoptive parents at every stage of their journey. Sharing your adoptive story with friends, family members, and media, is a big step.
At Adoption & Beyond, we work with many families within the adoption spectrum, both birth parents and adoptive parents. One of the questions we receive most often is how to share the news of an adoption, and whether there is a right way to address adoption with media resources. Here are some tips for moving forward with your adoptive journey story.
Sharing Your Adoptive Journey with Family and Friends
Your family and friends are bound to be curious about your adoptive journey and everything you went through to create your family. When discussing your story, it is a good idea to set boundaries, but be open to questions. Curiosity is natural but remember that you and your child’s privacy are essential, and you are not obligated to answer every question that comes your way.
While many adoption journeys are ongoing, including multiple moments to share your story, it helps to have an organized time and collection of information you want to share. Even if you go off-topic from the notes you have prepared for yourself, you will feel better having them for reference.
If you are concerned about this conversation, consulting with your adoption agency is perfectly acceptable. Your adoption coordinator will be happy to help you create a list of appropriate questions and answers or discuss topics you may want to touch on or avoid. You are never alone.
Sharing Your Adoptive Journey with the Media
Sharing adoption stories with the media can be particularly tricky for adoptive parents. Knowing what you should and should not say and ensuring that a positive light is shed on adoption is important. Here are a few tips to help.
1. Explore the 5 W’s – Who, What, Where, Why and When?
Questions you may wish to ask the media in question include:
- Why the media wants an interview and what it will be used for?
- When will the interview be taking place and what kind of medium should you expect (newsprint, blog, video, radio, etc.)?
- Where did they hear about your family and what interested them in your story?
- Who do they want to interview and what kinds of questions will they ask?
2. Make a List of Subjects You Would Like to Touch on
This is your adoption story and as such, you are in control of the information you share. Take some time to consider what you would like the world to know about adoption, your experience, and why. In bullet point form jot down your experience with adoption. When finished, re-read what you have written and edit it until you are comfortable with everything on the page. You can share this with the media before your interview, so they better understand what you are able to discuss.
It helps to organize these thoughts into brief 30-second explanations, to help you stay on point and express yourself more clearly.
3. Chat with Your Adoption Coordinator
Your adoption support network, including the agency you worked with throughout the adoption is a wonderful resource to draw on. At Adoption & Beyond, we always tell our clients to count on us from beginning to end and beyond. We are always here to help. Some questions you may want to ask your adoption specialist are:
- Is it appropriate to share your adoptive journey with this media channel?
- Do they know anything about this media channel or their connection to the adoptive community?
- What questions should you avoid answering?
- How best can you protect your child’s privacy during such an interview (should you display photos of your child, etc.)?
4. Be Respectful
Although your adoption journey is yours, it is also your child’s, and the birth families as well. Therefore, it is important to be true to your story, but also to be respectful of your child, the child’s country of origin, and your child’s birth family. Be mindful of your children’s privacy and the privacy of other individuals involved, while remaining as true to yourself as possible.
Contact Adoption & Beyond for More Information
Interested in learning more about Adoption in Missouri and Kansas? Contact us at Adoption & Beyond.
Or visit The Ultimate Guide to Adopting a Child for more valuable articles like this one.