Positive Adoption Terms: “Search”

Earlier this afternoon I wrote a blog post about a birth father searching for his birth son. The article, while interesting, used such negative adoption terms as “gave him up for adoption,” instead of the more positive phrase “created an adoption plan.”

Negative or unconstructive adoption terms are still prevalent today, and it is all of our jobs to use positive adoption terms, and to even educate those unaware when appropriate.

Today’s positive adoption term is “search” for family members and its unconstructive counterpart is “track down.”

I was very happy to see the Baltimore Sun article consistently used the term “search” throughout the article, as track down to me, seems as if you are hunting down someone that does not want to be found.

As was the case in the article, and in many other adoption search stories, the birth parent and adoptee both want to be found by each other, they just are not sure how to find one-another. Thus they are “searching” for each other, instead of “tracking each other down.”

Of course even in searches, not everyone wants to be connected, so searches must be done with care. Adoption STAR advises that before a search begins that the individuals/family enter counseling to discuss all of the possibilities and ramifications a search could bring.