Transracial Adoption

Happy african children having a nice dat at the park

Happy children having a nice day at the park

Adopting African-American, Hispanic, Asian and Native American Children

Transracial adoption (or interracial adoption) refers to the adoption of a child that is of a different race than that of the adoptive parents.  Children in foster care come from all different races and ethnicities.  Some foster families fall in love with the child for which they are caring and choose to adopt regardless of race or ethnicity while other adoptive families set out to diversify their family makeup.

Tips for Adoptive Families

Families considering transracial adoption should also note that adopting a child of a different race also comes with its own set of unique considerations. They should be prepared to teach their adopted child about their ethnicity and should foster a home environment that is open and loving of all races and cultures. As the child grows, adoptive parents should be prepared to answer questions their child may have about their own ethnic and cultural identity.

Experts also suggest that adoptive parents of transracially adopted children:

  • allow the child to interact with other people and children of the child’s race or ethnicity
  • read books about transracial adoption or the child’s culture
  • take a foreign language class to learn the child’s native language
  • consider living in a multicultural neighborhood
  • find same-race mentors and role models for the child
  • confront racism openly
  • cook ethnic dishes from the child’s culture
  • celebrate all cultures, including the child’s
  • take part in homeland tours and culture camps to expose the child to the traditions, customs and stories of their race or culture

Families also may join playgroups or other organizations that will allow the child to interact with other children or families of their race or ethnicity.  If you know of any other families in your community with children similar in age to your child, plan times for your children to play together, or ask them if they know of any other families looking to form a playgroup.

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