Looking for a book to start an age-appropriate talk about adoption with you pre-schooler?
Growing your family through adoption can be a heart-wrenching process. The countless meetings with social workers, the endless paperwork, the carrying around of papers for “your child” because they are technically still a ward of the state. It can be emotionally draining, but I found that it helped us be more intentional when it came to how we want to parent.
One thing we were both clear on was letting The Kid know in age appropriate ways that she was adopted. The decision was partially made for us, as we knew it would become obvious as she grew older that she wasn’t Caucasian or Latina. But it was a decision heavily influenced by the pain and confusion I felt learning who my birth father was as an adult. To us, it was better for her to grow up knowing and helping her understand than pretending the adoption did not happen and letting other people define the story for us.
We accomplished this in a few ways. One, we keep in touch with her foster family (although not as well as we should anymore). We talk about the day we met her for the first time or how much I cried after our first visit outside the foster family’s home. She asks questions sometimes and we have always told her the truth, even her questions about my birth Papa.
We would also read her a book called I Wished for You (link is to my Amazon affiliate account). It’s a story of a Mama bear talking with her cub, Barley, about how he was her wish come true. I don’t remember when we got the book, but it was one that would make it onto our nightly reading pile. While it never became her favorite, it was a book that would spark questions whenever we read it, which is why it ended up on our pile some nights.
I’m glad it was a part of how we kept the dialogue going about how we became a family.