Wolf, Baldwin & Associates, P.C.

Transracial adoptions have special considerations

Not all adoptions involve children who are the same race as their adoptive parents. When the child and parents are different races, the adoption is known as a transracial adoption. These types of adoptions have some very unique challenges that must be fully addressed both during the adoption process and also after.

One thing that you have to remember is that your culture isn't necessarily the child's culture. You might consider findng ways to help him or her learn about his or her heritage in order to feel complete. Children may develop a better sense of self by embracing customs to which they feel a connection.

You can help your child to learn about her is or heritage and culture by studying up on it together. Implement some ideas into the house that encourage them to explore their culture. You may decide that you should have one night a week or a month during which you eat foods that are part of the child's culture. For example, have Thai food for a child who has roots in Thailand or Japanese food for a child who has roots in Japan.

Finding someone in the community who can help your child to learn about his or her culture might help. Look for community outreach programs for people of that race and you may find ideas for where to find assistance for your child.

Another issue that you might come across is that you have to deal with the social implications of having a multiracial family. Many people don't mind this these days; however, you might come across some who do have issues. Protecting your children and learning and implementing strategies for coping with not-so-nice comments will benefit them in the long term.

Throughout the adoption process, make sure that you understand your rights and what responsibilities you have.  Having good counsel can reduce stress so that you feel more confident during it all.

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