An Adoptive Mom’s Attempt to Educate the Public…


Let's Talk About Adoption

One of the things that was surprising to me after adopting three of our children internationally was the number of times that we were stopped by strangers who wanted to ask a question or make a comment about our family- specifically about our differences. To point out the fact that we don’t look alike. To ask questions about our children’s biological parents and their blood relationship to one another. To ask about how much the adoption cost….. yep- I swear.

I was so annoyed- that at one point I created this animated video to share the absurdity of these conversations….

Over the years, I’ve discussed the topic of strangers’ intrusive questions many times with my adoptive mom friends, and most of us can share similar stories about comments made while we’ve been out grocery shopping or running an errand with our adopted children. But for most of us (myself included), we feel that this has happened less often as our kids have grown older. (Or perhaps… we are all so busy that we make less eye contact with strangers these days, which automatically curbs the questioning….)

Screen Shot 2014 03 03 at 8.26.07 PM 500x709 An Adoptive Moms Attempt to Educate the Public...

Image via Kim-Kelley-Wagner

So I was surprised to see this Yahoo Shine article sharing the experiences of adoptive mom Kim Kelley-Wagner and her daughters, currently ages 7 and 13. Kelley-Wagner who created a Facebook photo series showing her daughters holding white-board signs displaying comments that strangers have made to Kelly and her children in public. (YES- to her CHILDREN!)

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Via Kim Kelley-Wagner

Scrolling through Kelley-Wagner’s Facebook album I found myself nodding my head in agreement because I’ve been on the receiving end of many of the same types of comments from strangers. But I was struck by the fact that Kelley-Wagner decided (with her girls permission) to feature images of the girls sharing some of the inappropriate questions and comments. I am caught in-between applauding the three of them for being so brave and for making the statement, and cringing on the girls behalf that now these images are on the internet, and will always be a part of their online identity.

Screen Shot 2014 03 03 at 8.19.32 PM 500x746 An Adoptive Moms Attempt to Educate the Public...

via Kim Kelley-Wagner

So my question is…. What you think about this? Do you applaud to Kelley-Wagner’s decision to educate the general public on the rudeness and insensitivity of their queries? Or do you think  that featuring your teen and tween in a Facebook photo series like this is not the wisest choice a Mom can make to get her point across? (Although I have to admit- it was specifically her choice of using her girls in the images along with the list of intrusive and out-of-line questions and comments that caught my attention, and has had me thinking about it ever since.

Sharons Signture An Adoptive Moms Attempt to Educate the Public...

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Melissa March 4, 2014 at 12:28 pm

I can’t believe how rude people are. I would assume this mom asked her daughters how they felt and if they wanted to participate, and i’m guessing they did. They’ve probably overheard the questions and assumptions and wanted to be part of correcting the rude. Are they real sisters? Really? Gah, who acts like that?
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2 Sharon
Twitter: sharonmomof6
March 4, 2014 at 7:40 pm

It’s like they just open their mouths and whatever they might have been thinking just flies out- uncensored.


3 Amber December 10, 2014 at 2:52 pm

Super brave and impactful! I think it hits home a lot more to show that the girls get what is happening around them. It could be even better for the girls to be part of this education and feel included.


4 Sharon
Twitter: sharonmomof6
December 11, 2014 at 12:05 pm

Yes- if the girls want to be a part of the education. It certainly isn’t their responsibility to do so. And I think that varies as kids get older.


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