Being adopted means that a child is legally and permanently taken into a new family and given the same rights and responsibilities as a biological child. It involves a process where the biological parents’ rights are terminated and the child becomes a part of a new family. Adoption can provide a loving and stable environment for children who may not have had that opportunity otherwise. It allows them to have a sense of belonging and security. Adopted children may have questions about their biological roots but being adopted does not change the love and care they receive from their adoptive family.
Can you recall the day you were brought into the world? Definitely not! None of us can. When we come into this world, we are too young to comprehend what is happening around us. Most of us can only remember faint images from our early years on Earth.
During our earliest years, we rely heavily on our family. All of us need people to take care of us when we are young. As we grow up, we come to understand that those who care for us are our family.
Occasionally, the family members we know and love are not the ones who gave birth to us. Many children eventually discover that they were adopted. Do you know anyone who was adopted?
Adoption is the process by which a person, known as the adoptive parent, legally assumes permanent responsibility for a child. Adoption involves the biological parents (the ones responsible for the child’s birth) giving up their legal right to custody of the child.
There are various reasons why biological parents may choose to give up custody of their children. Sometimes they are unable to provide for their child, so adoption is a better option for the child. Similarly, adoptive parents may be unable to have a child of their own. Adoption allows them to start a family and share their love with a child in need.
Once an adoption is finalized, the adoptive parent becomes the child’s legal parent. There is no legal distinction between an adopted child and a child born into a biological family.
Although adopted children do not share the same genes as their adoptive parents (they share genes with their biological parents), they still experience the same love and special moments as any other family. Children may not realize they are adopted until their adoptive parents decide to inform them. This is a personal decision that varies from family to family and depends on the child’s ability to understand.
The specific adoption laws can vary from state to state. Some states allow adoptive children to easily learn the identity of their biological parents. Other states protect this information, making it difficult to obtain.
Some adopted children never discover the identity of their biological parents. Others do find out and may even establish a relationship with them at some point. Each child is different, but it is not uncommon for adopted children to become curious about their biological roots. Thanks to the Internet and modern technology, it is much easier for adopted children to search for information about their biological relatives.
Adoption is not limited to babies. Children of all ages can be adopted at any time. They can be adopted by a new family, a relative, or even a step- or foster-parent. Many adoptive families choose to adopt children from other countries as well.
Try It Out
We hope that you have made Wonderopolis a part of your daily learning routine. You are never too old to WONDER about the world around you. Share your sense of adventure and curiosity with friends or family members by asking them to join you in exploring one or more of the following activities:
Adoption: A Wider Perspective
Have you ever encountered someone who has been adopted? It might be worth asking around! Engaging in conversations with friends and relatives could reveal the surprising number of people you know who have experienced adoption. If possible, seek out someone who has been adopted and have a discussion with them about their journey. Do they have any knowledge about their biological parents? What aspects of being adopted do they appreciate? Are there any challenges they face? If you are also adopted, take a moment to answer these same inquiries for yourself and share your responses with a friend or family member who hasn’t experienced adoption. Gaining insight into the perspectives of others can foster understanding and empathy!
Did you realize that adoption extends beyond humans? It’s true! Animals of various kinds can also be adopted. Seek assistance from an adult to locate the nearest animal shelter in your vicinity. Pay a visit to the shelter and acquaint yourself with the animals residing there. You never know when you might find a new furry friend to adopt! If adopting isn’t feasible, there are other ways to contribute. Shelters often require volunteers for tasks such as feeding, walking, playing, and bathing the animals. How can you lend a hand?
Whether you are personally adopted or know someone who is, we can all express gratitude for the families we belong to. Today, take a moment to reflect on your family. Grab a piece of paper and a pencil, and jot down the names of all the family members you can think of. Don’t hesitate to seek assistance from a friend or relative. Once you have compiled a list of names, write a few words next to each name that capture the essence of that person and what they mean to you. Is there a caring and helpful uncle? Perhaps a kind and gentle grandfather? Ponder the reasons why you are grateful for each family member and endeavor to articulate these sentiments. When you are finished, share your creation with your family members. You might be surprised by the profound impact your words can have on their hearts!