1) Do not be the person who is adopted. Do not be the woman who relinquishes. Those people don’t get to tell adoption stories. Be an adoptive parent.
2) Tell the story before the adoptee is old enough to speak.
3) Never begin the story where it began, with a woman facing an unexpected pregnancy or a poor family in Ethiopia or a Guatemalan woman whose child has been kidnapped. Begin it with you and your desire.
4) Dispense with the original mother/family as soon as possible, while declaring your undying love for her/them.
5) Blog it for the world to see! Blog your frustration with the wait, your innermost feelings about that bitch who changed her mind at the last minute, baby’s first “chinky-eyes” gesture, everything! There is no chance at all your child will grow up to resent this, and you’ll get an awful lot of attention. You can’t get a book deal these days without a blog anyway.
6) Claim you’re doing something new and original in telling your story, arranging for an open adoption, adopting another race, adopting internationally, adopting at all, and/or disrupting an adoption.
7) Speak for the adoptee and her/his mother and/or family as often as possible. Give us their emotions and motivations if you have to make’em up. In fact, go ahead and make’em up. You’ll like the ones you invent much better.
8) Insist adoption has changed so so so much since Then. When people ask you how, tell them it costs a lot more and takes a lot longer. Tell them the “birth mother” has all the power nowadays. (Do not say you can’t get a healthy white infant anymore. People tend to wrinkle their noses at that one–the hypocrites.)
9) Did you adopt internationally? Then start planning your touristy-ass vacation–I mean, your child’s return trip–now, because that, cute homelandy-looking outfits, and meals at exotic restaurants are how his/her culture is preserved. When you go back to Wherever, blog that too. If at all possible, pick up another kid while you’re there.
10) Did you adopt internationally? Then you saved an orphan. (see #4)
11) If anyone gives you any shit, tell them your child’s original family were god’s roundabout way of getting that kid to you, and if they don’t like god’s plan, they can take it up with Him.
12) Seen a horrible adoptive parent in the news? Defend her! Defend him! Nobody but you can possibly know what that poor adult went through!
13) Lament your child’s lost heritage without allowing yourself to know how and why, exactly, this tragedy came about.
14) Do your child’s search yourself, when s/he’s very young, before s/he can decide whether or not s/he needs one.
15) Alternately, tell the world what a hurtful betrayal your child’s decision to search was.
16) Never forget that you are as entitled to a healthy, perfect angel child as everyone who has theirs the old fashioned way is. No, more so: you waited longer than nine moths, and you paid through the nose. If your child has any problem at all that you were not made aware of when you adopted, make your lawsuit, disruption or litany of “it’s not faaaaair” part of your story. Because no kept children are ever born with any surprises, and if they were, it would not be ungrateful or unseemly to gripe about those at all.
17) End the story with the child still a child. If possible, end it with your adoption finalizing and your happiness. (see #3)