Honoring Your Child's Birth Culture


Children adopted from another country or another culture within the U.S. need to understand and feel a connection to their heritage. Adoption experts and adoptive parents share advice and stories about honoring a child’s birth culture.

A girl blows bubbles and thinks about transracial families.

Preparing Our Children to Talk About Race

Preparing Our Children to Talk About Race

When you form a transracial family, you must build in a system to combat racism.

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Our Birth Mother Search in Guatemala

“Looking for Answers in Guatemala”

When it came to locating our daughter's birth mother in Guatemala, we didn't know where to begin. But we knew that we had to try.

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Our Adoption Trip to Meet Our Son's Foster Mother

“Visiting Our Son’s Birth Country: The Land of Contrasts”

"Make the trip, you won't be sorry." Our journey to our son's birth country—and to visit his foster mother—was an exhilarating experience.

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“Can Black Children Wear Watermelons?”

Many symbols commonly found on children’s clothing connote racist stereotypes of black people. Knowing this, should transracial adoptive parents still dress their black children in onesies and shirts featuring monkeys, zebras, and watermelons?

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a girl who is being bullied at school

“My Child is Being Teased at School”

Sometimes school brings tough situations, like teasing, tricky assignments, and nosy questions. When should kids handle things on their own, and when should a parent step in?

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International adoption questions to ask

How Will We Teach Our Child About Her Culture?

Even after twenty years, adoptive families are still grappling with some of the same issues and questions about raising their children in an interracial family.

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A woman recounts her experience adopting from China, until a tragedy derailed her plans

“The Red Thread of Fate”

More than a decade ago, I was hopefully working my way toward an adoption from China. After a tragedy derailed my plans, I wound my way to family in an entirely different way.

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Campers at Holt Heritage Camp

10 Questions to Ask When Considering a Heritage Camp

Most are designed for families. Other camps are just for kids, such as Holt Adoptee Camp (right), a sleep-away experience for children ages nine to 16.

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author Lakshmi Iyer with her family through transracial adoption

“American-Indian, Indian-American”

American by birth, Indian by virtue of being raised by us, the hyphen may define my twins more than either of the terms throughout their lives.

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Adopting From China

“Breaking New Ground”

In the days leading up to a second adoption, a mother worries: Are we about to turn our lives upside down? How will our daughter handle losing her position at the center of our attention? Will I be able to make room in my heart for another child?

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thanksgiving traditions

Chicken Feet for Thanksgiving

Tradition and ritual, especially during the holidays, signal security and family pride. And if you get creative, they just might reflect your distinct personalities, too.

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