Helping Children Develop a Positive Racial Identity After Transracial Adoption


When you adopt a child of a different race, you have a responsibility to help him or her understand race and racism. Adoption experts, adoptive parents, and transracial adoptees share their perspectives on developing a positive racial identity.

One father's decision on adopting transracially.

“My Decision to Adopt Transracially”

“My Decision to Adopt Transracially”

I thought. I researched. I talked. But in the end, it took a leap of faith to adopt across racial lines.

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A Korean adoptee

“Inside/Outside”: The Transracial Adoptee Experience

30 years later: A special report on the Korean adoptee experience

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Refugee adoption

Refugee Adoption: A Whole New World for Our Daughters

Although the adoption of refugee children was more complicated than I expected, it has been infinitely rewarding. These children and their past are now part of me.

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How to talk about racial bias with your kids.

Breaking the Racial Sound Barrier

In a society that considers "color-blindness" a noble attitude, parents may worry about talking about racism, but we must do it. Here's how.

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Instilling pride in her Latino heritage is important for adopted Latino children

“Rooting Our Children in Our Latino Heritage”

As Latino parents, we know firsthand the discrimination our children will face.

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Microaggressions can add up over time

Responding to “Invisible” Racism

Our society has gotten to the point where most people can agree that overt racism is wrong. Few would argue that segregation or using a racial slur is acceptable. But many more subtle forms of racism persist. Here's how to combat them.

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Our expert explains why it's important to start talking about racism and race with your adopted child.

Talking About Race and Racism

Racism exists, and it's our job as parents to talk about it with our kids. Here's an age-by-age guide to handling those conversations.

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Racial stereotypes are everywhere, especially for transracial families

“Is My Asian Son a Whiz Kid?”

When my son was five months old, friends predicted he would be a good student — probably a mathematician.

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Talking to children about race from an early age is important

“Bigotry, Blindness, and Basketball”

What started off as a fun day on the courts left my heart hurting for my two brown boys, and the kids who excluded them.

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In this personal essay, one mom discusses the challenges of transracial parenting.

“Having ‘the Talk’ with My Black Son”

It's not easy to teach your child that people may fear him because of the color of his skin—but it's something parents through transracial adoption must do.

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Ethnic pride is important in the diverse Cuchens family.

“Joining an African-American Church”

My wife and I were nervous the first Sunday we attended an African-American church. Would they welcome us? Would they stare? We should have had faith.

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Introducing racism to your child should be done early.

First Conversations with Kids About Race

Bringing up race and racism to your kid can be tough — but it should be done sooner rather than later.

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Ballerinas can have black natural hair, too.

“Cornrows Fit for a Ballerina!”

A simple hairstyle was not so simple for a dance class full of little girls with beautiful heads of black hair.

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Tips for discussing race with preschoolers

Helping Your Preschooler Feel Good About Race

Preschoolers are starting to notice racial differences. Adoptive parents have a responsibility to talk about them.

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Adoption expert Lois Melina on talking with adopted children about unknown birth family information

The Other Side of Privilege

If we're white, we experience many benefits of unearned status because we're "the norm." But adoptive families are not considered the norm. Now what?

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Support your child's ethnic heritage

When Children Deny Their Heritage

A strong connection to role models and to others who share their ethnic background is as important now as ever.

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