Friday, November 23, 2012

Responding to Rude Questions, Part 1

Most people would never dream of approaching a stranger and asking, "Is that your husband? How much did your car cost? What is your salary? Do you plan to have children?" But apparently when it comes to questions about adoption, rules of etiquette don't seem to apply. As part of our adoption education, we have to start thinking about how we will answer the nosy and rude questions and comments we will get about our family.

Before you read this post, I want you to know, you can feel free to ask me questions about our adoption. I actually love to talk about our adoption.  I love when people ask questions.  But it is one thing to be asked questions by friends who are excited for us and are asking because they care.  I also don't mind talking about adoption with strangers, if they have genuine interest in adopting. But it will be a completely different thing to be asked rude questions in front of our children by complete strangers.

Examples of Rude Questions and Comments!

The humorous video below gives an example of some of the things people will say to families who have adopted. (Please pardon the four letter word. I thought about not posting the video because of the word, but decided to post this video anyway because it is a funny way to show the kinds of questions and comments that people say to families who have adopted.)

Our Plan of Action!
  1. The most important thing is to protect our children.  When complete strangers come up to us and ask nosy or rude questions, our first obligation is to our children. Personal information is just that - personal! We are under no obligation to strangers. We plan to protect our children's privacy.
  2. Always assume good intent. People may just may not know the correct way to ask.
  3. If the opportunity is right, share educational information about adoption in general, not private information.
  4. In the stress of the moment if I can't think of an answer my plan is to smile and ask "Why do you ask?" with the possible addition of  "Are you interested in adopting?"
  5. When all else fails and the nosy questions keep coming - change the topic! "I love your shoes! Where did you get them?" or "What lovely weather we are having.  How long do you think it will last?"
Responding to Rude Questions, Part 2 gives examples of questions and comments and our planned response.
Why did you choose international adoption when there are so many kids who need homes here?

Read more: Adoptive Families Support - How to Talk About Adopted Children - Woman's Day
You’ll probably get pregnant now that you’ve adopted.

Read more: Adoptive Families Support - How to Talk About Adopted Children - Woman's Day

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