Quoting Blessed by Adoption X2:" I adopted 2 boys who are 2.5 and 15 months. We adopted both as infants and have an open adoption with ... [snip!] ... open to answering their questions, Is there any thing you wished your a-parents did for you? Any dos or donts ? Thank you"
first of all, bravo for being open about it. That is a huge step as an adoptive parent. here are some do's and don'ts from MY experience:
Be honest. obviously they may be too young to understand their stories. But as they get older, be honest with your answers to their questions
Be there for them
Tell them you are proud of them and love them on a regular basis. ( I never got told these things. I never felt good enough for my "new" family.)
put your children's needs before your own. My a-mom always told me i wasn't ready to know anything. I wouldn't understand, etc etc. I really was ready and had valid reasons. She was just scared and hid the info to protect her emotions and to meet her needs. But not mine.
Lie about it.
Don't blame their mistakes or flaws on their genes.
don't deny them their original birth certificate. It is part of our identity and our story. It is rightfully ours.
Don't assume that because they don't open up about their feelings of being adopted, or don't really talk about it, that they are 100% content with it.
Don't send them away to children's home when they act up or misbehave. ( they did this to my older adoptive brother. It made me feel like I was always walking on egg shells and that they would send me away if I ever made a mistake. It led to anxiety and anytime I thought I messed up, I would get anxiety attacks and cry non-stop.)
Don't try to mold them to be like you. Teaching them important morals, etc is fine. Just let them develop their own personalities. My a-mom and I were complete opposites. She knew that.... and HATED it! She would try to make me look, think, and act like her and it just made me resent her for it. I also stuggled with identity issues and felt more like a cameleon: Like i had to blend into my surroundings in order to be accepted.
When the day comes that they really want to meet thier bio parents, don't just dismiss the idea right away because you think they are going to replace you. I never wanted to run away with my bio parents. I just wanted to see who I came from, who's eyes i had, and be able to look at them face to face. I also wanted to know our families culture and medical background. Most importantly, I just wanted closure.
My adoptive mom, is my mom. She raised me, brought me up with great morals, taught me great life lessons, and provided me with anything i needed. Eventhough she wasn't a perfect parent, I love her so much and appreciate everything she's ever done for me.
I am in contact with my bio family now and have been able to have that closure that I really needed in my life. I am not angry at my bio-parents. I really can confirm that they did what was best for me and I truly respect them for that. Hope this helps!