“A butterfly that thinks itself a bird.”

While that idiom quoted above may not make complete sense to you when you check the meaning of the idiom and put side by side with the subject of adoption, it is pregnant with meaning.

I mentioned in an earlier post that my first interaction with the subject of adoption was in a family law class. It was in the same class I first heard this ridiculous statement. I call it ridiculous because it shows the level of understanding of the subject of adoption by relatives, neighbours and friends of people who have chosen to adopt or who are considering the possibilities of adoption.

That idiom is sometimes said to children who have been adopted by extended members of the adoptive family. The maker of the statement wanting to spite the child for whatever reason known to them doesn’t know he or she is only reinforcing his or her ignorance when he or she utters such statement. I get it, some people are still of the opinion that a child who is adopted is not really a member of the family and is merely an add-on, and that’s where orientation on the subject of adoption comes in.

I’ll write about the legal aspect in another post, and the fact that raising and nurturing of a child is not in biology alone.

The decision of letting a child know that he or she was adopted is that of the parent at a very early age, and not the business of other extended family members, nosy neighbours or frenemies. Click To Tweet

The decision of letting a child know that he or she was adopted is that of the parent at a very early age, and not the business of other extended family members, nosy neighbours or frenemies. A child who was adopted and has no knowledge of it until a later time, by other people and in a hostile manner will have several issues to battle with such as hate and bitterness for both the adoptive and biological parents, and a battle with his or her identity.

Ordinarily, a child who is told he or she was adopted in the most loving of environments has internal struggles and tough questions to ask concerning their biological parents and why they were giving up for adoption, how much more one who was not told early enough, and in an untoward manner.

Dear mother, father, brother, sister, aunty, uncle, cousins, neighbours and friends, please, hold your peace and mind your business. It’s not your place to let a child know they were adopted, leave it to the father and mother of the child to tell the child. It will also be mean of you to want to rub it in that a child is adopted to score a cheap point: you’re only putting your ignorance on display as you hurt that child.

A CHILD IS A CHILD, ADOPTED OR BIOLOGICAL... Click To Tweet

Let me remind you, A CHILD IS A CHILD, ADOPTED OR BIOLOGICAL, and what you can do is to respect the choices of the people who have chosen to grow their family in the way they have chosen to. And if you cannot show them the love deserving of a child, it will be best to keep your opinion to yourself.

Oluwakemi.