The day we became a transracial adoptive family was the day we lost our anonymity in our community. We’ve learned to handle the extra attention with some advance prep before going public, some choice words, and some perspective.
Life in a Conspicuous Family Formed Through Transracial Adoption
When you adopt a child of another race, your family’s adoptive status will be writ large—and you will be sure to receive a fair share of looks, nosy questions, and comments. Experts, adoptive parents, and transracial adoptees share advice and stories about life in a conspicuous adoptive family.
Connecting With the Black Community
Find ways to bond and connect with the culture of your adopted African American child.
“How I Parent My Transracial Family”
Like all mixed race families in America, we face stereotyping as a matter of course. These six lessions have helped enrich my family.
“Keeping Up Appearances” – Our Skin and 4C Hair Care Routine
As the parents of four black children, we drop a small fortune on lotion and products and build time into our schedule to style their hair, all the while questioning whether we know what we’re doing. A recent conversation offered some much-needed reassurance.
As parents, we shape the memories our children will carry through their lives. What a delightful, and intimidating, prospect!
Parent-to-Parent: Explaining Attention and Questions from Strangers
When you and your child don’t look alike, the world wants to know why. Parents who adopted transracially share how they explain strangers’ questions and comments to their children.
Share Your Story: Adopting a Child of a Different Race
We asked AF readers to tell us about their experiences with transracial adoption.
“Teaching My Son to Protect Himself in a Racist World”
As parents, we live in constant tension: How thoroughly should we prepare our kids for the ugliness that exists in the world? For my son’s safety, I can’t afford to be vague when it comes to racism.
“Families Like Us”
My wife and I may not match our kids, but we found a group where we all fit in.
Share Your Story: Transracial Parenting
We asked readers what tips, resources, experiences they had to say about transracial parenting. Here, we share their responses.
Ask AF: Four-Year-Old Expressing Negativity About Her Skin Color
The mother of a preschooler shares her concern about negative comments her daughter has been making about her skin color. Parents who have been there offer advice.
When Shady Neighbors Come to Call
When potential neighbors were looking at the house for sale next door, this mom of a biracial child mas mainly worried they wouldn’t be friendly or would paint their house purple — until race came up.
“How I Deal with Nosy Questions”
Our daughter is not a public exhibit. She deserves to be protected from questions that undermine the legitimacy of our family.
“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.
“Adopting a White Child Across Racial Lines”
When the social worker brought my new daughter to my house, she wasn’t the African-American girl I was expecting. And so we became a transracial family.
News Brief: For Some Parents, International Adoption Decision Reflects Racial Bias
A new study by the University of Vermont concluded that race plays a role for some parents who adopt internationally rather than domestically. Researchers conducted in-depth interviews with 41 mostly white parents who had, collectively, adopted 33 children of various ethnic and racial backgrounds from 10 different countries, as well as the United States.
Webinar Replay: Growing Up as a Transracial Adoptee
View the replay of this webinar with Deborah H. Johnson—on growing up as a transracial adoptee and what parents today need to know about talking about race and adoption, finding role models for their children, dealing with teasing, and more.
Ask AF: Recommended Travel Documents
Answers to your parenting questions.
To the White Parents of My Black Son’s Friends
But here’s the thing—as much as we can try to protect him and teach him to protect himself, there may come a time when your child will be involved. As the parents of the white friend of my black son, I need you to be talking to your child about racism.
Should We Adopt Transracially?
For many prospective adoptive parents, “the choice” of where and how to adopt is the most difficult part. Answers to three common questions when deciding if transracial adoption is right for your family.