5 Ways You can Incorporate Your Culture with Your Adoptive Family in an Open Transracial Adoption in NY
The United States is a melting pot filled with varying races and cultures. This is reflected in the many different ways adoptive families look like in our country. Transracial adoption is when a family adopts a child that is a different race. Open adoption is when birth mothers and adoptive families exchange contact info and decide on how much communication they will have when the adoption is finalized. Open, transracial adoption in NY is usually white parents adopting outside of their race, but this isn’t always the case.
Open and transracial adoption are great options for birth mothers to consider, and, like with any other type of adoption, there are unique challenges. Race and culture are integral parts of our identities, and it’s beneficial if adoptive families allow your child to explore this identity. A good way to do this could be by incorporating your own culture into the life of your adoptive family.
At Adoption Choices of New York, we celebrate collaborative relationships between birth mothers and adoptive families. However, it’s important to remember that after the adoption is legalized, you no longer have parental rights. Your adoptive family will have to approve of any interaction you have with your biological child. This is why it’s important to have conversations about what your open adoption will look like with any of the adoptive families you’re considering before you choose.
5 Ways You Can Share Your Culture with Your Adoptive Family
Culture is important, and it helps shape who we are. It can be expressed through hundreds of different ways and experiences. Sharing your culture could be a great way to positively shape the life of your biological child and their adoptive family.
- Prepare Them for Cultural and/or Racial Bias
In the United States, there’s no doubt that individuals have varying experiences based on their race and culture. Because your birth child is being raised by a family of a different race, they may be confused when they notice they’re being treated differently than their parents.
Because you’re the same race as your birth child, you’ll be able to help your adoptive family navigate these issues. You have first hand experience that is invaluable, and if you think your knowledge could be beneficial, consider sharing it.
- Introduce Them to Your Favorite Foods
Food is integral to identity, and it’s a great vehicle to share a piece of your culture with your adoptive family. Whether you decide to make the food yourself, buy it from a restaurant, or share a family recipe, it’s a great way to share a large part of your identity.
- Share Holidays and Other Important Events
Maybe you want to highlight Black History Month, celebrate Dia de los Muertos, or share the history of Hanukkah. No matter what days are important to you, they matter for a reason. Sharing important events with your adoptive family is a great way to create bonds and impart crucial aspects of your culture.
- Gift Them Books and Other Educational Materials
If you’re looking for more ways to give your birth child a deeper understanding of their culture, consider giving them a book that is meaningful to you. Maybe you own a children’s fiction book that has great representation, or you remember a great piece of historical nonfiction that will help them understand their cultural past.
You can also give recommendations for educational materials to the rest of your adoptive family. It’s important for adoptive parents to make an effort to understand their child’s culture, and this would be a great way to start.
- Share Your Story
In the end, no one will understand a race or culture more than someone who is a part of it. Your story is important, and it could help your adoptive family understand you and their adoptive child better. Hearing about your story would benefit your biological child, and allow them to have a deeper understanding of their self.
Embracing Open Transracial Adoption in NY
Open adoption is a beautiful thing. It allows for a child to have both a loving adoptive family and a birth mother to turn to. An open adoption, especially in the instance of transracial adoption, allows you to supplement your child’s understanding of the world with your own experience.
About the Author: Alexandra Georgiton is a fourth-year student at the University of Cincinnati studying Rhetoric and Professional Writing, and is receiving certification in Copyediting and Publishing. She has been passionate about the English language for her entire life, and reading and writing have always been her favorite hobbies. She enjoys professional writing and editing because she loves to use her talent and love of writing to make a difference in the world.