I have yet another adoption bone to pick, so to speak. I haven't seen this complaint recently but I've seen it often enough in the past and it's always bugged me. What is it? That adoptive parents expect carbon copies of themselves in their kids. So...of course their children don't feel free to be who they are, which of course is automatically different than the parents because there's no genetic link. Yeah, right. I think that is completely ridiculous! There is no guarantee of having a child that looks or acts like you, likes the same things as you, or has the same talents as you even if he or she IS your biological child. I would not expect that of ANY child of mine. Any parent who would...well, imo that's just bad parenting.
All four of the boys have some similarities to me. Tyler is very particular about things just like me (ok, ok...we probably both have OCD. But just a little lol.) I had to laugh on our first Christmas together. He set up the nativity set and SO proudly asked, "Did I do a good job? It looks just like it does on the box." Sure enough it did lol and that was SO something I would've done, especially as a kid. I use each boys' talents and interests that match mine to strengthen our relationships. For example Cory loves to cook as much as I do so he often helps me in the kitchen and we have fun and a lot of great talks then. Jay is my little bookworm so we read together and talk about books a lot. But don't all good parents do that? Spend time with their kids doing what they both enjoy doing?
On the flip side I also accept and enjoy my boys for who they are, including their differences. Cory and Ty love rap music for example. It's probably the one genre of music I can't get into. At all. Ah, but do I tell them they can't listen to it? Nope. It's hard becuase so much of rap is inappropriate for kids but as long as the song isn't violent or explicit I'm ok with it. Ty's taste in clothes is NOTHING like mine. It's totally West Coast choppers, flames, and the like. I don't buy him, or any of the boys for that matter, clothes they don't pick out. I have the last word in appropriateness of course but it's all clothes they have chosen. So yeah I let them express themselves. And I spend time doing things they like that I may not, like watching football with Ty. I don't pick the sports they play or clubs they join. They tell me when they're interested and if it's possible they join. I HATE the cold but every year I go watch the boys ski. But again isn't that what a good parent does? Encourage their kids in what they're good at and enjoy even if the parents aren't or don't?
When I began the process of fostering and adopting I never signed on for a carbon copy of myself. Never expected it. I just assumed that we'd be alike in some ways, different in others. A relationship like I have with my mom and dad...enjoying our similarities but respecting our differences, and know what? Enjoying them too.