Growing up, there always used to be one school assignment that confused the everliving crap out of me: family trees. I honestly dreaded doing them. Who was I supposed to trace? Which family did they want? Every year it was a different answer, but the same message.
When I was younger, they used to tell me that I should use the family of my adopted parents. It was easier and I had a lot more information. Plus, they were my family, weren’t they? As I got older, the answer morphed a bit; use the family that you feel most comfortable using, but I could tell the teachers really had no idea how to approach the situation. I guess I can’t blame them too much, there really isn’t such an easy way of handling things like this, and in my school, I never had any other adopted kids.
Why isn’t there a simple way to show a movement of a child from a birth parent, to a foster parent, to an adoptive family? I mean, now that I am older, I can use a genogram or something else social worky, but why don’t they have a method on how to deal with these things in schools especially when it comes to adopted children? What is it that we are exactly teaching our kids about family structures? Families now a days are so much more than a mom and a dad and some kids. There can be same sex couples, grandparents, siblings, etc taking care of children. There can also be more than one set of parents in the picture. How is it that we intend to handle this and make the situation feel as comfortable as possible?