10 Things Adoptees Don’t Want to Hear

As adoptees, we probably aren’t allowed to tell you we’re tired of dumb comments from adoptive parents, friends, neighbors, and even strangers. But we are. Here are 10 things adoptees don’t want to hear anymore.


1. I Bet You’re Thankful To Be Alive.


As if adoptees should be more thankful to be alive than someone who hasn’t been adopted. Why should an adopted person be more grateful for life than you are? In fact, maybe you should be reminded regularly that you, too, could have been aborted or found dead by a dumpster had your parents not saved you.


2. Your Birthmother Was a _____ (fill in the blank with something shitty).


Our birthparents don’t have to be trash-eating whores in order to make us more thankful for being adopted. In fact, many grown-up adoptees are finding out that the myths and stories they’ve heard about their birth parents weren’t only embellished, but straight out lies. You don’t have to make up an excuse to justify our adoption — we get it. For one reason or another we were there and now we’re not. By the way, your mother could’ve been a whore, too. But her story isn’t likely to be broadcast to strangers. And if it were, she is at least granted the common courtesy to explain or defend herself. Ours can’t. Also, don’t call our birth mothers whores.


3. You Could Have Been a ___ (fill in the blank with something shitty here) Too.


No one ever says, “Oh. You could’ve been something great if you weren’t adopted.” Whether our birth parents were dirt poor or some other negative thing — that we could have caught had we been raised by them — no one knows, not you, not me, not my next door neighbor. No one knows what other thing could’ve happened or what we could’ve become had we not been adopted. If it’s negative, it’s best not to speculate.


3. Happy Gotcha Day!


Whose twisted-up head thought Gotcha Day was a good idea? Pretty sure it wasn’t anyone over the age of two. Also pretty sure no one over two enjoys hearing about Gotcha Day and those younger than two years old aren’t old enough to understand how kidnappy it sounds. We know it’s supposed to commemorate the day you were adopted, but let’s be honest, it sounds more like the day someone snuck up, captured, and yelled “Boo GOTCHA!” (otherwise known as stalking and snatching). How about we just stick to celebrating our birthdates (our real ones, preferably), sort of like normal people?


4. WOW. You Look Like You Could Be Their Real Kid.


Or “You have your adopted mother’s nose.” How in god’s name is that possible? For some reason, people find it necessary to tell adoptees, especially those of a completely different race than the adoptive parents, that they sort of, when you squint one eye and close the other, far away and in the dark, look like they could be their “real kids.” That’s lovely. However, it’s highly unrealistic that an Ethiopian kid is going to even remotely resemble his or her white parents. This really just reminds us how much we don’t and will never look like our parents. Which brings us to “real kids.”


5. Do Your Parents Have Real Kids?


Or “Do you have real parents? Do you have real sisters or brothers? How many real kids do your adoptive parents have?” Because obviously there are people who aren’t real. You know, the ones with shiny faces and painted eyes that sit in fancy wood curios. You can say hi to them forty times and the rude shits just stand there propped up in place with those dumb smiles on their faces. I can, at least, speak — English, even. I am going to go ahead and speak for all adoptees: we are as real as it gets. We are the business.


6. You’re Way More Normal Than Other Adopted People.


We know. We’re more normal than the other two adoptees you know. Because all adoptees are jacked up, have mental disorders, hate America, and are this close to becoming serial killers. But luckily, one of the only adoptees you know is stone-cold normal. Lucky, but boo. How boring. Most of us normals don’t really take pride in being the most normal. Go big. Tell us we’re the hottest of the three.


7. Maynarding is Sometimes Necessary. Because, See #6.


No matter how you want to justify or break it down, you won’t convince me that giving away, rehoming, maynarding, or giving back a child you adopted is justified. I don’t give two shits about how “difficult” the child is or how much you didn’t get what you expected. Problems are part of parenting even when you squeeze the kid out from your very own vagina. It’s a crap shoot, yo. When you adopt a child, you are agreeing to be the parent of the child, and if you aren’t prepared for the possibility of health, behavioral issues, mental issues, or even a surprise crazy eye, then you need to rethink whether or not you are fit to become a parent.


8. Your Parents Are Saints.


It should probably not be assumed that all adoptive parents are saints or even good people. In fact, if asked, most adult adoptees can name five jacked up adoptive parents that they’ve known or heard of, if not actually lived with. You don’t earn sainthood because you wanted a child, bought one, and then chose to treat him or her like a human being. Pretty sure you have to heal someone or at least be in possession of a Jesus face cheese sandwich in order to become a saint. By the way, newsflash: some adoptive parents are the opposite of saints, otherwise known as straight out shitbirds.


9. You Don’t Need Your Bio Family.


Because you have a family. You’re one of us. You don’t need to find your biological family. Every human being has the right to know the people who made him or her and being curious or searching for those people should in no way make the adoptive family or friends feel uncomfortable or disrespected. Also, I’ll do you a favor. If you don’t tell me what I need, I won’t tell you what I was thinking you need.


10. I Feel You. I Don’t Belong In My Family Either.


Just because your mom doesn’t want to listen to Eminem with you, doesn’t mean you can relate to the isolation that adoptees feel. Until you’re taken from that family and placed in a whole different family, sometimes in a different country where no one looks like the people in the original country and often don’t even speak the same language as you, don’t compare your differences with your family to those that an adoptee may feel. It’s totally not the same.


We know you mean well. Sometimes. But we don’t want to hear it.


~ Christina Majaski


Christina Majaski resides in Minnesota with her daughter and is a freelance writer for various publications including MoneyCrashers.com, PayScale.com and EcoSalon.com. She spends her free time drinking cheap wine, hunting unicorns on Twitter, and crushing dreams on her blog at www.christinamajaski.com/blog.