Talking About Race and Honoring Birth Culture in Transracial Adoption


When your child joins your family through transracial adoption, you must find ways to talk about racism, instill a positive racial identity, and honor her birth culture.

Joe Mills is a parent via transracial adoption

“Our Visible, Multiracial Family”

“Our Visible, Multiracial Family”

Although my wife and I talked a great deal about race before we decided on a transracial adoption, we didn't fully appreciate how conspicuous our family would become. Quite simply, we now stick out in a crowd.

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A happy and healthy multiracial family

“Did You Try to Have Your Own Kids?”

My wife was deluged with questions at a new moms' group, each one more personal than the last.

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Even though she was adopted from China, my daughter loves American pasttimes.

“What Being Asian Means to Her”

At 13, my daughter is still figuring out who she is. Race is one part of the picture, adoption is another.

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Children in a multiracial family

“Why Am I the Only One Who’s Pink?”

Being Mom to "virtual twins"—one African-American, one white; one adopted, one biological—has taught me to validate both of my children for who they are.

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AF readers and AFC community members sound off about diversity at school.

Classroom Consciousness

Finding the right school for your child is a personal, and sometimes emotional, process — especially when considering diversity and academic excellence.

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One mom wonders when to address ethnicity in multiracial families.

“Should I Proclaim My Family’s Multiracial Identity?”

My son's Mexican heritage is not apparent to others. Is it my responsibility to identify ourselves as a multiracial family?

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One mother describes her experience with transracial adoption.

“Blurring the Line”

Mississippi has the largest population of African Americans in the United States, and the color line seems to be drawn in permanent ink or, perhaps, in blood. Because of this, I always believed I would never go back after my daughters came home from Haiti.

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One mom describes her struggle to explain race in her conspicuous family.

“Talking About Race in Our Blended Family”

A chance conversation in the car almost set our son apart from our family. But what happened brought him closer to me than ever.

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An adoptee who was born in a prison, exposed to subtances, shares her story of beating the odds

“Beating the Odds”

My prison birth could have set me up for a life of failure. But the love of my families has led me to one of resilience and hope.

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People playing the djembe drum

“The Rhythm of Our Lives”

While looking to connect with our children's culture, we found the beat of the djembe drum would become a comforting family melody.

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Adoption Documentary: A film by Barb Lee

[Movie Review] Adopted

What is life like for a person adopted internationally? Adopted digs deep into the lives of two adoptive families to find out.

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One mother builds a dollhouse family to reflect transracial adoptive families.

“A Dollhouse Family Just Like Ours”

Buying a dollhouse for my daughter's third birthday was a cinch. Finding the right family to live in it was a bit more difficult.

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How to celebrate adoptee heritage as kids grow.

Age-by-Age Ways to Celebrate Birth Culture

An age-by-age guide to cultural activities that help our children take pride in their identity.

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A family on a homeland tour..

“A Homeland Trip with My Teens”

I planned our homeland trip, hoping to see my children's birthplaces. Surprisingly, those proved elusive, but we found meaning at every turn.

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