1. Why didn’t you adopt locally?

For me, I had a personal connection to Haiti having served in Haiti since I was 15 and I understood the need as well as the hellish adoption process that would dissuade most people

  1. How much did he/she cost?

While this response is intrusive and insulting, I try to stay calm and simply respond “It was an extensive process to make him part of our family.”

  1. Jokes about your child being a commodity, i.e “I want one! Put one in a suitcase for me next time you go!”

I try to help people understand the pain and beauty of adoption. It’s not an easy process and there is loss involved on one end of this process. Someone lost their child due to illness, financial burden, or other circumstances. It’s not all about just having a new toy or a cute little child.

  1. Did his mom and dad not want him? What happened to his/her parents?

This can be the worst comment when said in front of your young adopted child. We usually respond by saying, “We don’t talk about all of his past, but we are grateful he is here now. He is so loved and wanted.”

  1. Why does it take so long?

You’ll get this every day while you’re waiting. “You would think that a country that can’t take care of their children would practically throw their children at you.” We tried our best to explain a lot of the corruption that takes place and say “All they’re doing is trying to protect their children and it just happens to be terribly inefficient.” Also we often looked for ways to lovingly say “Thanks, but we don’t want advice.”

By Tacy Riehm


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