Adoption Language

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The way we talk about adoption has evolved over time as we become more aware of the complexities of our relationships and the way children and adults react to words, nuances, and connotations. Resources for present and future parents, families, teachers.

A Few Words on Words in Adoption

Adoption educator Brenda Romanchik suggests ways to resolve some of the language differences that exist in adoption.... [more]


If you've got a question about a word or term, here are definitions of terms commonly used in connection with adoption and foster care, for quick reference.... [more]

Language Sites

Web sites addressing the evolution of and revolution in adoption language. Articles, glossaries, guidelines. ... [more]

Lingo List

Adoption-specific abbreviations, acronyms and terms.... [more]

Politically Correct Adoption Language

Are you PC? Do you care? Decide for yourself if new language surrounding adoption helps or hurts our ability to communicate.... [more]

Talking to Family & Friends

How do people in and outside our families view adoption? We can often be surprised at how little or how much they know, and how they express themselves. Here are resources for all of us - to learn about different attitudes, and find ways of dealing with the insensitive or uninformed.... [more]

Talking to Kids About Adoption & Family Issues

Professional counselors and parents offer suggestions and recommendations for talking to children (and others) about adoption, sex, and infertility. When to tell a child, how to tell a child, and advice on handling awkward or uninformed questions from well-meaning adults.... [more]

Talking to Teachers & Educators

School-aged children can be exposed to hurtful comments from their classmates, or feel uncomfortable with certain types of class assignments or language used in the classroom. Here are resources to help parents and educators work together for the children's benefit.... [more]

The Language of Gifts

Author reflects on adoption terminology and how subtle differences in the way adults use words reflect on the children.... [more]

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