On July 22, our country celebrates Parents’ Day. This holiday was enacted to put a spotlight on the adults who are caring for children. Families are being recognized with parents as the cornerstone to create a lasting impact on their children. In the adoption community, children possess two sets of parents to celebrate: their birth parents and their adoptive parents. Both sets of these parents can and should be celebrated this Parents’ Day.
Well, there is one obvious reason for adoptive families to celebrate birth parents on Parents’ Day: your child’s life depends on it. Your child would not even be here today if it weren’t for his/her birth parents. Birth parents possess such great courage in the decision to give their baby life in your family. They trusted you to be the ones who would raise their child. How can birth parents be celebrated?
- Simply say “Thank You.”—Verbalizing your appreciation to the birth parents of your adopted child can be a great reminder to them of their brave decision. Give them a call if you can to let them know you’re thinking of them on Parents’ Day. Send them a letter to let them know how you feel.
- Send them pictures.—Send the birth parents pictures of the child they placed for adoption. Write little notes on the back of each picture with a detail that you think the birth parents would appreciate knowing about their son/daughter. Sending an extra set of pictures on Parents’ Day is a nice gesture to let your baby’s birth parents know how important they are to your family.
- Offer to make a visit.—If you have entered into an open adoption, offer to make a visit with your adoptive child to see/meet them. On the visit, take a keepsake for the birth parents to keep to help celebrate Parents’ Day.
- Talk about them—Tell your child how they were loved by their birth parents who wanted their child to be loved by you too. Talk to your child about how much you love his/her birth parents for choosing you to be a mommy/daddy.
You may be a birth parent, an adoptive parent yourself or know other adoptive families in your community. The dynamics and perspective of a family who has united through adoption is so special. Surrounding them with support and encouragement will celebrate the parents’ role in their family. Having something to celebrate them on Parents’ Day recognizes the love they provide for their child.
- Write them a letter.—If you know an adoptive parent, write them a letter detailing why you celebrate them on Parents’ Day. Include your sentiments toward their love and care for a child in their home that may not share their DNA. Compliment their strengths as a parent and encourage them in their role.
- Bring them supper.—Being a parent is the best job in the world and doesn’t come without its share of worry or fatigue. Providing a meal for their family means more time building relationships and less time cooking or cleaning.
- Get the kids involved—Ask the kids what they would like to do for their parents to tell them how much they are appreciated and loved. Even as their parent, you can explain the holiday to a child and choose to celebrate your family rather than just acknowledging the parents. Enjoy your family’s favorite pastime or ask your child to make something that expresses what they love most about their family.
Adoption offers the opportunity for children to be doubly blessed. Celebrating two sets of parents holds a beautiful reminder in adoption of how much love is reserved for the child. However you choose to celebrate Parents’ Day in adoption, remember the double blessing.