He casually answered, “Colombia.”
Unsure of what on earth he meant, I spoke to his teacher about it. He explained that both the boy and girl were adopted but not blood related, and his sister was in the process of coming home still, and the family had gone down to visit several times.
Then he said, “And neither of them know they’re adopted.”
What? How was that even possible?
Apparently the family adopted the boy around the age of 2, so he didn’t remember anything. But the little girl got caught up in all the legal problems that can happen, and had been waiting several years to come home. In the meantime, she’d grown up in an orphanage there. Somehow (and I have no idea what enabled this to be pulled off) the parents had convinced her and their son that she was actually theirs but had to live in Colombia for a while.
The second year I taught we actually got to meet her and indeed – their new daughter only was told she had been born to both parents and stuck in another “home” for a while.
All of us teachers were asked by the parents to never tell the children or anyone else they were adopted. Even though the entire small community knew. The girl and boy did strikingly their mother by all having dark hair/eyes, so it wasn’t noticeable right off the bat to a stranger that their family wasn’t blood related.
I have no idea if they plan to tell them later, and it’s not my place to judge, but I’ll admit that quite frankly I was shocked at all of this and wondered how it would impact these children’s lives – told or not? One day they’d have to start to question it all.
We respected their choice but I told myself if I ever adopted I would never pretend that. Besides the honesty and mental issues later on, not to mention the stress that keeping a secret of that magnitute would cause, here are some of my personal reasons why we’ll always tell our adopted children their whole story, regardless of if they look like us or not:
*identifying details changed to protect privacy
All photos credit of iStockphoto
Diana blogs on raising a toddler daughter, the loss of her twin boys, and their families’ Korean adoption in progress on the aptly named Hormonal Imbalances.Smaller glimpses into her day are on Twitter and Facebook, and on Pinterest.
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