Should you tell the child that he or she is adopted?

dad and girl - dad and a girl.
India
August 29, 2007 6:34am CST
Should you tell the child that he or she was adopted? If so at what is the right time to tell that? Is there any right age?I think people should tell adopted children they're adopted, as soon as possible. It will never turn out well if they wait a long time, and i would hate to have something like this kept as a secret from me. As a kid, fnding that out, they would not really appreciate that, but later in his or her life, i'm sure that they will be glad that they're parents were honest with them.
5 people like this
23 responses
@jillhill (37357)
• United States
29 Aug 07
definately. there should be no secret about that. Tell them that they were handpicked! So very special because their mother gave them people who would love them as much as their own she did.
• India
29 Aug 07
what did u mean by the last statement??mean to say that the biological mother loves the child very much??
@jillhill (37357)
• United States
29 Aug 07
It would take great love to give away part of you and your soul. I could have never given up any of my own children no matter what.
• India
29 Aug 07
but then i think most of the adoptions are because the original parents leave their child somewhere on the roads/orphanages etc..
@vinzen (1001)
• India
29 Aug 07
Hi, i agree that we should let them know soonest, but how soon is the question. That i think should be when they are just about to enter their teens, as i feel when they are younger, we should not hurt their tender hearts as they are still growing and their emotional maturity has not taken place as yet, but by the time theyre nearing their teens, theyre nearing maturity levels and i think a better understanding about this would come to them then. Of course each family is different and each family should be able to decide this factor after consulting each other and seeing the child too, as all kids are different from the others, some mature earlier , some take time, so it would depend on that too. When they are young, they would be heart broken if we told them, that they are adopted and that feeling that they dont belong or that these are not my parents should not enter their minds lest they take some drastic step and leave or run off. They need to be told about this very maturedly, with love, care and understanding, like two mature people talking. Tell them the reaons for adoption and incase need be, try to help them find their real parents too, and let them then decide for themselves what best for them. I think that when they are a little grown up and able to understand the whole thing, thats the right time, not before that.
@Foxxee (3654)
• United States
30 Aug 07
I believe it doesn't matter what age. Either way you go, it will hurt. I was told when I was 14 that my father that I thought was my real father, wasn't my real father. It hurt and it took me in the wrong direction. So it's hard at any age to hear something like that.
@vinzen (1001)
• India
30 Aug 07
Thanks for resonse Foxxee, yes i do agree that it will hurt, whatever age it maybe told at, except when they are too small, but they would not know the meaning of adoption and will be confused that age too. I guess, depends on the situation and circumstance that the family and the child faces, anyways you would have to tell th child some day, i think we should let the child mature a little and maybe they need to be told in a proper way, and ned extra care there after.
• India
30 Aug 07
thanks 4 de response foxee, its really bad to be in such a situation. But done u think if they had made the decision to tell u a little earlier, it would be something much better..??
@lexus54 (3577)
• Singapore
30 Aug 07
I personally feel that this decision should be left to the discretion of the parents who did the adoption, because this can be sensitive to some people. I personally know of a couple who adopted their two children when they were less than one week old. Their children are now grown up teenagers. Their parents by birth played absolutely no part (other than bringing them to this world) in their upbringing, in nurturing them, providing for them, educating them and making all the important decisions for their lives. They have chosen not to tell their children about their adoption because they have been very responsible parents to these children right after their birth, and their parents by birth had through the legal adoption agreed to cut all ties with these children. Under the circumstances, I respect this couple's decision not to disclose the adoption. I feel that in this case, it is really inconsequential for the children to know about their status. I think here, it is not a question of being honest or not. Sometimes, some things are best not said because doing otherwise may create unnecessary complications, even if done in good faith and honesty. I feel there is no absolute right or wrong about revealing the identity of an adoption. The parents in question will have to weigh the consequences of such a decision that befits their situation.
• India
30 Aug 07
hey i dont think that this will work out. because as someone earlier tols that the child himself will be curious abt the fotos where his mother is pregnant n stuff. and he ought to know at some point of time from sonme relatives or family friends the truth. the consequence will be bad.
@lexus54 (3577)
• Singapore
31 Aug 07
I respect yr point of view, but for this couple, I think their relatives and close friends have agreed to keep mum about it. They all understand I suppose. It's been nearly 20 years now, and I can truly say so far so good for their situation.
@2btrueinu (705)
• Philippines
30 Aug 07
Yes you have to tell the child that she or he is adopted for so many reason. No. 1 The child has the right to know who she or he really is, who are his or her parents, where he came from. 2. To built their moral coz many of adopted child turn wild, thinks they were not loved, something comes to their mind that they were not important so their parent leave them and gave them to other people. I have one adopted child but she is not others to me she is a child of my brother I kept her as my own I love and cherise her so much as my real child. Yes I told her the truth and nothing change in our relationship we became more close to each other so I advise you that you must tell your adopted the truth they have the Right to knoe the truth but say it in a nice and understandable way so that she can accept the whole truth for her own good. Your right as a child I don't also a secret to be kept from me, it like betraying me. I must know the truth and I want to hear it not from other people but to the one who take care of me.
• India
30 Aug 07
thanks 4 dis gr8 response..n nice to know u had such an experience before..n also that u r still happy after telling this to him as well..
@tuffy999 (794)
• Philippines
30 Aug 07
kids have the right to know that they are adopted. i feel that the best time to tell them is when they are of school age, it's better for them to hear it from the parents rather than from somebody else. since they will be interacting with other kids in school i think this would be the best time to tell them. just my own personal opinion.
• India
30 Aug 07
yeah this is wat is exactly wanted..they should know from their own parents..
@archer1811 (1099)
• Philippines
30 Aug 07
Maybe for me, I wont probably tell him/her that she/he is adopted, but as old folks says that there's no secret that cannot reveal in due time well I let my child to discover it with his own and if he dont discover the truth well good, what if he finds out the truth and suddenly look for his parents, i would feel so hurt coz the love that I gave to him is the love that every parents give to their own children. And when he learned the truth in due time I have my own ideas on how to explain it to him why we kept the truth and maybe he would probably understand our opinion. For me as much as possible I want it to be secret that only me and my husband knows the truth.
• India
30 Aug 07
i feel the danger here is that, if the child is really grown up by then. he may loose the attachment with you..no parent will be able to stand that..
@youless (81440)
• Guangzhou, China
29 Aug 07
I will never tell him/her that he/she is adopted. When the day I adopt him/her, he/she is already my real child. I don't want him/her to feel sad when he/she knows actually he/she isn't my own child. I will keep it as a secret forever.
@Foxxee (3654)
• United States
30 Aug 07
And there is nothing wrong with that. I agree with what you are saying. It's your choice.
• United States
29 Aug 07
I agree with you. They shoud be told or have it explained to them wile they are young. I had a girl freind who was adopted, but in her case it was obvious, she was korean her parents were german, anyway, she had a pice of poetry framed in her room, I can never forgrt the one line included 'you did not grow below my heart, but within it'. It gets me all choked up just thinking of that lovely sentiment.
• India
29 Aug 07
a very nice little statement..very hard to find international adoption though..they did a gr8 job..
@meemingNEW (2228)
• Philippines
29 Aug 07
Telling a child that he/she is adopted will most likely affect the child in someway. I mean, if the parents who adopted the child will tell him/her that he/she is just adopted.. how will a child react to that? when all the while, the child thought that you were his/her parents who raised and cared for them. But I think those children deserve to know the truth about who they really are and where they came from. But at the right age. When they are mature enough to know about it and to accept it.
• India
29 Aug 07
there should be a right age..eventually all children should be knowing that i suppose..but if they r very big, they may feel hurt and the attachment towards the family might be lost..this is wat i think..
@lightningMD (5937)
• United States
29 Aug 07
I think kids should be told right from the very beginning that they were adopted. That way you never have to worry about lying to them or someone else telling them. Just tell them how special they are because they were chosen by you,and how much you love them.
• India
29 Aug 07
yeah i do feel the same way..it would be a negative if some others tell them the truth..it might be paining as well..
• India
31 Aug 07
I agree completely with you that an adopted child should be told as soon as possible that it was adopted. A child has an adaptable mental framework and if told that it was a conscious, selected choice rather than natural child who was kind of imposed on the parents by God, they accept and feel very proud that they were chosen purposefully. Once grown, as adults such children naturally have a preconceived notion of family and parents and if suddenly they are confronted with the fact that they were adapted, they may react angrily and with resentment. But once told as a child about adoption, they kind of grow up with it. It becomes natural to them. Worst possible danger of keeping this vital info under wraps is the fact that if the child comes to know of it from outside source, this shatters the entire family.
@MisterPlus (1917)
• Philippines
30 Aug 07
This is a very sensitive issue to adopted children. They will feel unwanted by their real parents and they might feel anger for the rest of their lives. Someone in the family must be very tactful in telling the adopted child. Parents with adopted children must show real love to their adopted children and never show that he/she was only adopted. Treat them like they come from you. There are connections between the adopted and the adopting parents and should not be forsaken. Adopted children are God's gift.
• United States
30 Aug 07
Yes i think you should tell the child they are adopted. I knew someone that their parents hid it from them until they were 18. And when they found out it was very upsetting to them. So yes you should tell them when you think the time is right.
@ketybhagat (4125)
• India
30 Aug 07
Actually it is best to tell them when they are young. The more you leave it, the more difficult it becomes for the child to accept. I know of a boy who became wierd after knowing he was adopted and murdered his neighbours young son. The earlier they know, the more they are prepared to accept you and come to terms with the fact. Love also is a big binder.
@Nardz13 (5059)
• New Zealand
30 Aug 07
Hi there. Personally, I think its totally up the parents, and there conscience, and if they do decide to tell the child, the child should be of an age and understanding where he or she can decide for themselves to ever want to meet the biological parents, to understand why this took place, I know there would be alot of questions needing answers on the childs part... I agree, it always works well, in the long run, when parents are honest with there children...
@suspenseful (40326)
• Canada
30 Aug 07
We told our sons when they were able to understand, I think they were between three and five then. Before that is too young and I was hesitant because I had given my only baby up for adoption and I did not want to feel like a glorified foster mother. They look so much like me, I am part German and so were they that I imagined that I had given birth to them. But telling them they were adopted, made me feel less as a real mother, and more desirous for wanting my birth daughter to get in touch with me. So I am rather ambivalent on the issue. I did not want to tell them for fear that their birth mother might show up and my birth daughter would not. Luckily they showed no interest.
@mbilagan (178)
• Philippines
30 Aug 07
For me, the parents should tell the child right away. But this should be done in a way that a child will understand and will not feel threatened. Kids today are very intellegent. I'm sure they will understand. You just need to asure them that even they are an adopted child it doesn't mean that they are less love. You should make them secure and well love. This way, the child will never feel any insecurities as they grow up. Be honest with your child, it will help him a lot.
@arkaf61 (10891)
• Canada
30 Aug 07
Well, I think it all depends in the situation and particular of each case. Preferably, in my opinion, the child should be told. At least that was the way it happened with me and I am glad it was. On the other hand maybe my case was a bit different and maybe in some other cases it's better not say, or maybe it is something of a secret or something. There are so many different cases. The age the child should be told depends on the situation as well. For example I always knew, but then again I was in touch with my birth family too. For me having two sets of parents was kind of natural. However if the child is not to be in touch with the birth family maybe knowing at a very early age is not the best idea. It was easy for me to understand because I had the two families right there in front of me, but maybe it would have been confusing if I didn't. There are, usually reasons, for people to keep some things secret for a while, and although it's best to have them in the open sometimes it's beneficial to wait until the child can understand better.
• United States
30 Aug 07
a child should be told that he/she is adopted as they are growing. this way they will grow knowing that and will "get used to it". If they are told when they are grown, this may affect their development and I know some who are constantly depressed.
@laurika (4537)
• United States
30 Aug 07
If I would have a adopted child(what really wuld have one time, becuase I want to)I will tell her or him as soon as possible.why not?It s much better when parent's tell them true, like they will hear it from sobody else.Be honest with your child , it is the biggest value.