Saturday, June 18, 2016

6 Ways to Not Sound Ignorant About Adoption

Feels like this silliness rears its head every year or so - and we tend to receive a good bit of it year round. We've touched on it before - but here are 6 more ways to NOT SOUND IGNORANT about adoption.

1 thing TO do and 5 NOT TO DO.

It's easy!

#1 - THINK!
God gave us these awesome noggins for a reason - let's use 'em!

So you walk in to a restaurant and see a uniquely made family - maybe the parents look different than the kids - maybe not all the kids look the same... but whatever it is - your drawn to them because:

A) they're different and,
B) the kids are probably stunningly beautiful.
You start walking towards them while they are eating and all kinds of things cross your mind:
- "I wanna touch their hair"

- "I wonder where they're from?"

- "Could they be biologically related?"

- "They must not of been able to have kids..."

- and all kinds of other thoughts...
Here is where you have an awesome opportunity to be different. To show some tact. To help restore my faith in mankind's ability to be wise and not openly ignorant.

Remember - THINK!

You are about to approach a family in the middle of their meal - with their children present - and ask some questions of which you have no idea what the answers are or what this family has walked through.

So... THINK!

There's a whole slew of sympathizers of the ignorantly curious who say things like:
"Come on Tymm - show some mercy and compassion to these people! They're typically just curious and want to know more about adoption... blah blah blah blah"
To those sympathizers, I say... THINK!

If you know me - you know you will ALWAYS get my undivided attention if you have questions about ANYTHING to do with adoption, our family, missions, etc. I'm a fierce advocate for all of it.

Unless my kids are present.

And then... I beg you to THINK before you open your mouth.

Because the protection of my children's minds, souls and spirits will ALWAYS trump the quenching of somebody's curiosity. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.

So there ya have it - one thing you CAN do to not sound ignorant about adoption. You can think.

Now - 5 easy things NOT to say that will also increase your adoption awareness and make you seem less ignorant.

Remember - as your mind is getting ahead of ya - and you're approaching this family at their table - DO NOT say these things...


Look man... they're not loaves of bread or pet hamsters. We didn't run by King Soopers on the way home from work or swing by PetSmart.

These HUMAN BEING CHILDREN weren't "GOT" from anywhere.

They were BORN.

Not got.

And they came to be with us through the sovereign hand of a God who hates that this solution even has to exist but has given it to us as a fallen solution to a fallen problem in a fallen world.

How's that for an answer? Too much, too soon?


Your best bet? Just don't ask this question...


Yes. They are.

Ad I'm gonna be super honest with ya here - ya get ONE SHOT at this question with me.

If ya did #1 up there and THOUGHT - you probably wouldn't even ask this question - but if ya do - ya get one shot.

You will always hear "yes" from me.

If you begin to push the issue and continue to dig past my answer - you're gonna find yourself on the receiving end of a not very happy daddy.

This line of questioning disturbs me deeply and I struggle with why people have this deeply rooted need to know this biological connection of my children.

And start throwing in words like REAL or TRUE and honestly - it just speaks volumes about YOU.

Wanna sound NOT IGNORANT?

Say something like "What gorgeous brothers and sisters you are!"

And call it quits.


Horseshoes are lucky.

Holes in one in golf are lucky.

4 leaf clovers are lucky.

Lottery winners are lucky (or not...)

But these kids are not LUCKY.

There is absolutely nothing lucky about family disruption brought on by any number of circumstances of varying degrees.

There's nothing lucky about spending chunks of prime development time in an institutionalized setting.

There's nothing lucky about hunger and the long term effects it has.

There's not a single thing lucky about a solution rooted in pain. NOTHING.

i know when you say this you're trying to pay us a compliment - and that's not lost on us.

But as you approach our table and this idea of "luckiness" pops in your head - and ya just HAVE to let it out - look at me and Laura and say "Wow - you guys are so lucky!"

Because that? That is 100% true.



Deep breath.

Count to a trillion and 70.

We do have our own real kids.

You're staring at them.

They're very real. And they're our own.

Ad there's nothing else that even needs to be said about this except - go back to #1 up there and THINK.


Okay.. seriously?

That's the comparison that jumps to mind for you when you see my dope little dude chilling with me?

I'm sorry for you... and you remind me of...

Okay, okay, I won't go there.

But don't say this right in front of my kid.

Multiple times.

I can show copious amounts of restraint and control - but this one - this one might test even my capabilities.

Okay - this list is in no way exhaustive - but if you do #1 and choose not to say #2 through #6 - you will likely present yourself as a tactful, caring individual who seems well versed on adoption!

And we all wanna be tactful... right?

And like I said before - you will ALWAYS get my full attention if you have legitimate questions and a desire to understand and know more... just in the right setting with the right people present (or not present).

So... until next year...

Go forth, be tactful, think... and don't be ignorant!

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