If you are interested in reading more about this, "When Friends Ask About Adoption” is a great source. It is a “question and answer guide for non-adoptive parents and other caring adults” written by Linda Bothun. I've included a couple of her exerts from her book along with some of my own thoughts.
1. "Never say, "Now that you're adopting you will get pregnant and have one of your own." First of all, only 5% of couples who stop infertility treatments get pregnant after they adopt. So although many stories abound of people who got pregnant after adoption, this may have only been a result of infertility treatment and not a result of "less stress" after an adoption. In addition, to say this is to elude in some way that the adopted child is less meaningful than the biological child. It says now that you've adopted you can have a child of your own, ... the truth is the adopted child is a child of our own. Thuy is our own child. We will love her, care for her, and worry about her everyday of her life and if this doesn't make her my own, then please tell me what does.
2. How much did your baby cost? Its so amazing we don't ask people's salaries, but we'll ask perfect strangers about the cost of an adoption. Stop and ask if you're asking because you are truly interested of just nosy. Especially don't ask this in front of a child. Adoption does not mean paying for a baby, we pay for the process, the work done so we are able to adopt. More appropriately stated would be, "is adoption very expensive?" if you are truly interested in financing an adoption. And let's remember it costs everyone to bring a baby into their home, whether you deliver at a hospital or at home with a mid-wife. Although insurance does cover it, it is not free. A good answer to someone who may just be rudely asking and not truly interested would be, "An adoption is no more expensive than biologically having a child."
3. Natural or Real parents? In adoption circles, the term for the parents who gave birth to the child are known as birth mother or father, or biological parents. If the woman who gave birth to Thuy is her "natural mother," then who would I be, "unnatural?" The real parent is the one who cares for or nurtures the child. Please use the words birth or biological. And you can use the term adoptive parents for the adopting couple. If someone says to you, " Amanda is not Thuy's real mother", you can reply, "Amanda did not give birth to Thuy, but the woman who raises Thuy is Thuy's real mother." We may have Thuy just refer to her birth mother by her birth mother's name, we are still thinking about it, so that when she is little she doesn't get confused by all these uses of the word "mother."
4. When will we tell Thuy she is adopted? In adoption circles today it is believed there should never be a time when a child didn't know they were adopted. We'll start by telling stories of us going to VN to bring her home, how happy we were when we adopted her, etc. It is important how you explain this to your kids who may have adopted friends so that they understand adoption in a positive way. Children's perceptions on issues begins with their parents view points. Thuy will start saying she is adopted long before she truly understands the word itself.
5. Will Thuy be my real granddaughter or real cousin? Yes, of course! Blood and DNA is not required for someone to be your family, look at married couples, or in laws, we love them and we are not related to them biologically. Blood and DNA do not guarantee great relationships, love does.
6. Never introduce her as, "This is the Moore's adopted daughter, Thuy." First of all, would you ever say "this is my biological child, Mary," ... certainly not! There is no need to point out to everyone you are introducing the family to that the child is adopted. Kids do not want to be singled out, they want to be like everyone else, and always telling everyone they are adopted makes them feel very different from the other children in the family. The adopted child is no more special than the biological child, it is just two different ways to have a family.