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How can you talk to your biological kids about adopting your stepkids?

On Behalf of | Aug 8, 2022 | stepparent adoption

While adopting stepkids can provide your stepchildren with a sense of stability, you also have to consider your biological children. Your kids may have different questions about the process and why you plan to adopt more children. When talking to your biological children, find time to speak to them without their stepsiblings.

According to the Gladney Center for Adoption, teaching your young kids about adoption early can help them to understand.

Explain different family dynamics

Kids can tell that families look different. Explain to your kids that families all look different, but the critical part of a family is that everyone loves one another. After all, they may meet friends who live with relatives rather than two parents or kids who have same-sex parents.

Likewise, not all kids live with their birth parents. Explain that while you may not be the biological parent of your stepkids, you are their parent.

Use appropriate terminology

Never use the phrase “real parents.” Likewise, never talk about the biological parent giving up his or her child. Kids need to hear positive language around adoption. Additionally, if you use the wrong terminology, your kids could repeat it or think of the stepkids as different from their biological siblings.

For preschoolers or toddlers, you may have to have several conversations. Little kids have a short attention span, so you may have to have small discussions where you can answer your child’s questions. Be honest and if your kids ever mention your stepchildren’s “real” parents, correct them. Remind them of the terms biological and adoptive parents.

Some kids may also benefit from reading about adoption.