You may have heard people say a variety of phrases when discussing the topics of adoption, children who were adopted, and their parents. Learn what to say, what not to say, and why the difference is important with this table.

Say thisNot thisWhy?
Making an Adoption PlanGiving away, giving up, or putting upper adoptionParents are not giving up, they are providing. That child has VALUE.
Choosing adoption for a childSurrender, relinquish, releaseThis implies adoption is outside of the birth parents.
Placed for adoptionPut up for adoption, adopted outChildren who were on orphan trains were literally “put up” on a stage for viewing.
Unplanned pregnancyUnwanted pregnancy, illegitimate childMost birth mothers want their child but understand they cannot provide in the ways they desire. Every child is wanted by God.
Biological mother/fatherMother/FatherWhen adoptive parents are referring to the birth parents, mother and father are those who adopted the child, not those who conceived them.
Birth mother/fatherReal/Actual Mother or FatherWhat makes a mom or dad “real” or “fake”?
Deciding to parentKeeping the child/babyParenting is ongoing and active. It is much MORE than keeping or watching a child.
Person who was adoptedIs Adopted, adopted childA child’s adoption is an event in their lives, it does not ultimately define who they are.
My childMy own child, my real child, my adopted childWhen parents adopt a child, it is just as much their child as a biological child would be.