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The Importance of Respectful Adoption Language

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Adoption has become more main stream with the help of celebrity adoptions and popular TV shows, like This is Us, but for too many people , it remains a topic they know little about.  This can be reflected in the words and phrases used when speaking about adoption.  Most of the time, off-the-cuff remarks or poorly chosen words are not used maliciously, but are indicative of the lack of knowledge surrounding the adoption process.

Words and phrases can evoke negative feelings when used in the context of adoption.  The opposite holds true when careful consideration is used to choose positive and respectful adoption language. The National Council for Adoption has put together this helpful list of commonly used adoption language with more positive replacements.

Accurate Language Less-Accurate Language
Birthparent/Biological parent Real parent, natural parent
Birth child Own child, real child, natural child
My child Adopted child, own child
Person/Individual who was adopted Adoptee
Born to unmarried parents Illegitimate
Make an adoption plan, choose adoption Give away, adopt out, give up, put up
To parent the baby/child To keep the baby
Child in need of a family Adoptable child/unwanted child
Parent Adoptive parent
Child who has special needs Handicapped child, hard to place
Was adopted Is adopted
Choosing an adoption plan Giving away your child
Finding a family to parent your child Putting your child up for adoption
Parenting the baby/child Keeping your baby
Confidential adoption Closed adoption
Unintended pregnancy Unwanted/problem pregnancy
Fully-disclosed adoption Open adoption

 

Patricia Irwin Johnston, an infertility and adoption educator, describes respectful adoption language as, “vocabulary about adoption which has been chosen to reflect maximum respect, dignity, responsibility and objectivity about the decisions made by birthparents and adoptive parents in discussing the family planning decisions they have made for children who have been adopted”.  So when Grandma Betty innocently asks why your adopted daughter’s “real parents gave her up”, try to not get offended and offer her examples of a more positive and respectful way to approach the subject of adoption.

4 Years of Blessings: A Note from Keisha

Keisha Update

Hello Carol,

I don't know why, but I find myself up late tonight; burning the midnight oil while thinking of Everlasting Adoptions and the blessing you've been to our family. Our baby girl is 4 now and continues to amaze me every day. The constant kisses and "I love you mama's" made it all worth while.
 
I look at the website about once a year, reflect on our experience and pray for all the families and birth mothers, because I know it can be a stressful experience and wait. But I sometimes wonder who has taken the time to thank you once again for the gift you have given after it's all said and done?
 
I will! Thank you again, and again, and again... My children have been arguing and getting on my last nerve all evening, and I still can not forget how blessed I am. You and your team are a gift from God and we thank you for your assistance in manifesting our blessing, even now.
 
(P.S. As I was about to press send on this message, she just walked into our bedroom to crawl into our bed as she does every night... smh! What a blessing!)
 
Kind Regards,
Keisha

Thank You From Jessica and Jonathan

Pease Success Story

When Jonathan and I first met, within the first week of talking we discussed the topic of adoption. We contacted Everlasting adoptions in October 2016. After speaking with Carol, we got a strong sense of love from her and we knew this was the right agency and decision. Our home study was completed in December and in late February we got a call from Lisa letting us know a birth mother was interested in us. We instantly connected with our birth mother and knew this was God's plan. Throughout the next 5 1/2 months we talked daily and FaceTime twice a week and would drive up to visit her once a month. We were very blessed that she only lived a few hours away. Our adoption did have its ups and downs, but looking at our precious baby boy made it all worth it.

The staff at Everlasting Adoptions went above and beyond our expectations. Lisa is a true gem and was our rock during the many ups and down of our journey. She always made us feel like a priority no matter what day or time. Her constant words of encouragement and advice, guided us in times of need. Her passion for wanting to see through a successful adoption was very apparent. We felt as though she truly has a love for adoption and was with us every step of the way.

If you're looking for an agency who does everything in their power to have a successful adoption and truly cares, then we encourage you to reach out to Everlasting Adoptions. Our dreams have become a reality because of the experienced loving staff members at this agency. It's because of them we have such a beautiful son in our lives. A big thank you to everyone who contributed in our adoption journey. Words can't express how thankful and happy we are!

New Birth Announcement - Congratulations to Christy and Adam

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Adam and Christy had always envisioned adoption being a part of their pathway as parents. Like many couples, they had high hopes of adopting after having biological children of their own. When they faced an uphill battle, adoption became part of their journey sooner than they had thought. They were elated when they got the call on their 12 year anniversary that they were being welcomed into the Everlasting family. Plans changed when they were connected to a birth mom and took a step back from their work with Everlasting to explore this connection. They welcomed their first son John into the world in July of 2014. When they felt ready to adopt again, we began working with birth moms once again to find John a sibling! Adam and Christy experienced many ups and downs in their journey, as many adoptive parents do. After several failed connections and close calls, things all fell into place when they were connected with their birth mom, Chelsie. They had the opportunity to meet Chelsie and her family and hit it off wonderfully! Shortly after returning home, they were surprised with the news that baby would be coming much sooner than expected. On August 8th, Andrew was born and John became one of the cutest big brother’s ever!! We can not thank Christy and Adam enough for trusting Everlasting to help build their family. That gratitude extends even further for their birth mom, Chelsie for allowing us the opportunity to help her when she knew that parenting was not the best decision for Andrew or her and her children. Happy Birthday, Andrew! We can’t wait to see what kind of trouble you and your brother get into!

New Birth Announcement - Congratulations to Lattrice and Michael

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Michael and Lattrice joined the Everlasting family at the end of 2015. They dreamed of becoming parents, sharing their passions and seeing the world through the eyes of their child. They wanted nothing more than to travel, go to sporting events, and most of all,  share their love of reading with their child. They entrusted Everlasting to help them connect with a birth mom. Michael and Lattrice had a rocky road during their adoption journey. They had several potential birth moms, some who they decided were not the right fit and some birth moms who decided that her path was going in a different direction. The wait was challenging and without a map to guide them, sometimes it didn’t make sense. That all changed in May, when they were contacted about a birth mom named, Skyler. Michael, Lattrice and Sky spent time getting to know each other and connecting. Sky and her son travelled to visit Michael and Lattrice and being together sealed the deal. They were a match! One month later, at 10:08 pm, on July 30th, Sky delivered a beautiful baby girl. Michael and Lattrice named her Mia Skyler. Just 8 days later, they cleared ICPC and were headed home! Their journey was 19 months and at times the wait was frustrating and difficult, but worth it. We hope that baby Mia, Lattrice and Michael truly live a life full of love, joy and that this is their happily ever after.

Happy 1st Birthday Bliss

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Little miss Bliss Agnes is walking, saying a few words and getting all of her first molars. She is such a sweet soul, lovely human being and has forever changed her parent's lives. Happy Birthday to you!

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