Positive Adoption Language is really important. Like many things there have been changes in adoption both in how adoption works and what words are used. Here’s a great chart that will help us use the positive language. As with everything, each family is different and may have slightly different terms for everyone involved. If you are unsure- ask!
Positive Adoption LanguageThe words we use while talking about adoption can send unintended messages. When writing about or discussing adoption, please consider using language from the right-hand column.
| Negative Terms || Preferred Terms |
| Giving up her child for adoption || Placing her child for adoption |
| Real parent; natural parent || Birth parent, biological parent |
| Adoptive parent || Parent |
| His adopted child || His child |
| Illegitimate || Born to unmarried parents |
| Adoptee || Child who was adopted |
| To keep || To parent |
| Adoptable child; available child || Waiting child |
| Foreign adoption || International adoption |
| Track down parents || Search |
| Unwanted child || Child placed for adoption |
| Is adopted || Was adopted |