Mama Bear Instincts

Posted: April 24, 2012 in Uncategorized

As an adoptive mama, I have become accustomed to curious glances from strangers – rarely does a day go by when I am not asked about our family or adoption. Just last week, I met a lovely couple simply because they were curious about our two younger boys. It was an older Chinese couple, and the man approached me and first asked if all four kids were mine. When I said yes, he asked if my younger boys were adopted. I explained yes, from Taiwan. Turns out his wife was born in Taiwan. He asked some questions about our adoption and even offered to teach me Chinese – it was so sweet. I hope I get a chance to see them again. I love talking about adoption and Taiwan. But our family does look different from most. My protective mama instincts kicked into high gear yesterday when a stranger kept staring at my children and watching us as we walked into our gym. The man was not dressed to work out, and was watching us a little too closely for my comfort. He followed us into the gym and sat down in the lobby. I mentioned my concerns to the childcare coordinator and she was able to figure out he was there to pick up a child from one of the children’s programs. That put my mind at ease. I am fairly certain he was just curious about our family and probably didn’t mean to alarm me. But you can never be too careful and I would rather mention my concern and for it to turn out to be nothing, than ignore it and regret not saying anything.

  1. Judy K. says:

    I’m glad you and the kids were okay and nothing came of the uncomfortable staring. So sorry you have to put up with this.

  2. Brenda says:

    Sometimes I wonder if I will know when people are interested in adoption, when they are curious, and when they are being overly nosy / rude. I want to be an advocate for adoption and model graciousness, but I still want to maintain an appropriate boundary. (Our son should be home in a few months.) Did you find the balance hard to learn?

  3. good for you mama bear!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Cindy says:

    Hi Brenda – I’m still trying to figure out the balance. I think it all depends on how someone approaches me. Sometimes I can just tell people are curious. I am happy to talk in general terms about our adoption and I love to talk about Taiwan. I want our boys to be proud of their Taiwanese roots. But I don’t share any details about our boys’ background and specifics about what led to their adoptions – I consider that nosy and will tell people I don’t share those personal details. I do want to get the curriculum called “Wise Up” – it’s designed to help adoptees know how to respond (or not respond) to questions about their adoption:

  5. Brenda says:

    Cindy: That W.I.S.E. Up! program looks great. I will look into it further as a preparation for my 3 older kids, because I know they will face a lot of questions, too. Thanks.

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