{#16} Be your own advocate

When someone has a biological baby, we all know the etiquette on showers, meals, and hospital visits. Conveniently a pregnant woman carries around a physical reminder to remind us to throw a shower, plan a meal, and ask how she’s feeling and when she’s due.

Adoption etiquette is a whole different ball game.  The invisibility of the process matched with a general lack of knowledge about adoption make it really hard for those around you to know how to support you.  The reality is that your friends would probably love to support you if only they knew how.  If you’ve been overly sensitive to adoption-related questions in the past, they are probably too intimidated to ask how to help.

As adoptive (or prospective) parents, you need to help those around you know how to help you as well as other adoptive families.  This may seem awkward but keep in mind that it’s also paving the way for adoptive families that will come after you.  If you really can’t stand being your own advocate, maybe another adoptive friend will solicit help for you.  Remember to keep an eye out for other adoptive families for whom you can return the favor.

Your friends and church family need to know that you need clothes and age-appropriate gear for you newest family member.  They need to know you need meals, babysitting for siblings, and maybe even some help with housework.  They need to know how you’re struggling so they know how to pray for you.

If you don’t educate and advocate, you cannot throw a pity party for yourself when nobody helps you.  They just don’t know how.

You can also check out these ways for your church to become more adoption-friendly.

Posted in Things Adoptive Parents Should Know and tagged .

One Comment

  1. Amen! I never adopted but at one point, we thought it would be our option. I want to be considerate but I'm not good at it. If an adoption mom tells me what she would like for help, I'm all for it! Great piece!

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