Once we applied to our agency, my husband and I decided to speak to our parents separately regarding our plans to adopt (me with my mom and dad; him with his mom and dad). We thought this was the best way to approach it, because we are in the process of an international transracial adoption and wanted our parents to speak openly and honestly about their feelings. I think people tend to edit their thoughts when in the presence of in laws. Plus, his parents are older than mine, very old-fashioned, and have had no experience with adoption in the family. Mine are more modern and our family has had a long history of adoption, though all domestic—not international.
Their feelings and opinions would NOT have swayed us or changed our minds. We are both in our 40s, never had bio kids, and we are certain this is the right path for us. However, we did want to get a sense of where they’d be at because we wanted to count on their support through a very long, stressful process. Thankfully, they are very excited and have adjusted quite well from the beginning! Whew!
After that, we shared with siblings and the few close friends that we asked to write recommendation letters (we wouldn’t have included friends, but the rules stated that family members were not allowed to write the letters). We asked them all to keep our confidence, and so far it seems they have. We are in our 17 month of waiting, so I know it is not easy for them not to tell extended family and close friends about our plans. I simply told them, “We know how excited you are, but we’ve waited a long time to have a child and this should be OUR news to share”. They got the point.
Oh, and I did tell my boss a few months ago, because the process is so unpredictable and I didn’t want to be unprofessional by taking time off without any notice. She’s a mother too (bio and adopted), so she knows the deal!
As soon as we get our referral, we’ll be telling everyone.
I have been thinking a lot about findingbalance’s post, and I say this: It is not difficult for people to understand that you and your husband found each other, fell in love, and decided to make a life together. Obviously, you have no bio connection to each other, but your love isn’t any less valid or real because of it. The same is true of adoption. The biology doesn’t matter. You might say that your love for each other has inspired you to find another person, already in the world, to join your family. You are confident that this can happen because you’ve already proven it can be done!
I will give it some more thought though.