The Most Ridiculous Question People Ask Me As An Adoptive Father.

Author of 5 books, podcaster, parent trainer, husband and father.

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As an adoptive parent, I have been asked some majorly ridiculous questions about my children and adoption. If you don't believe that we get asked crazy things, check out my post on proper adoption terminology or the video I posted last year on the stupid things people say to transracial families...

Truthfully, many questions like these come from ignorance (most of the time) and a gentle correction or sharing the correct terminology with folks usually fixes things. But other times, it doesn’t…and it’s just ludicrous!

The most ridiculous question I get asked as an adoptive father (and trust me, there are many) is this one:

Are any of them real brothers and sisters?

Yep, there it is! Are any of them real brothers and sisters. Allow me to answer this in one simple, yet profound way: YES! Yes, they are all real brothers and sisters. Trust me on this one.

They fight to the death with one another all the time. But they also fight for one another all the time. They could beat the living tar out of one another but the moment someone outside of our family picks on one of them, they form the tightest alliance you will ever see amongst brothers and sisters.

Just last year, while visiting one of our older daughters at her apartment, our 5 year old son came running in from playing outside and announced that another little boy in the neighborhood was being mean to him. In a unified movement our other 5 younger children stood up as if to say (with a finger wave and all) “Oh no he didnt!!!!!!”

This kid stood on the sidewalk with a smug look on his face, as if he had just won a prize fight, until he looked up and saw a rainbow of destruction marching his way. He retreated to the confines of his apartment, which was a good thing too. My wife was too many steps behind our children to save him from their wrath! Picture the epic Battle At Kruger for the full effect of that afternoon.

Yes, they are real brothers and sisters!

Not only do they fight with each other, and for each other, but they also have a deep love for one another just like biological brothers and sisters do (maybe even stronger!).

This last week, I sat beside our pool at our vacation house in Florida and watched my three younger boys have the time of their lives with one another. They jumped in the pool, made up games, and laughed the afternoon away. It was brotherly love on full display. My wife and I reflected on that moment last night. As we did, she made the comment, “They’re brothers alright!”

Honestly, I can understand where the question comes from. Most of my children are not biologically related, and, being that they are adopted, and multi-racial, people are trying to ask the question, “Are any of them biologically related?” It just comes out the wrong way. I understand that, and I have patience with folks who ask this, most of the time.

But, think about it this way- I wouldn’t walk up to a married couple, who are not biologically related, and ask them if their marriage was real, would I? The fact that they are not blood relatives does not make their marriage fake. Nor would I ask them if they are real family members just because they are not biologically related. They would look at me oddly if I did. They might even tell me about the real fights they have or explain to me the real depth of their love for one another. All real, all equating to a real marriage, and each being a full-fledged member of the other’s family.

You don’t have to be biologically related to be real brothers and sisters, nor do you have to be biologically related to be actual family. So, stop asking such ridiculous questions of adoptive parents. Sorry if this sounds harsh, but think it through a little before asking.

Or, spend an afternoon with my kids and you will see just how real their sibling-ship is! 🙂

Adoptive parents, what other ridiculous things have you been asked about your family?

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Mike and Kristin Berry are the Co-Founders of The Honestly Adoption Company and have been parents for nearly two decades. They are the authors of six books, and the host of The Honestly Adoption Podcast.

Sarah Gray

Sarah Gray is the executive assistant to Mike and Kristin Berry. And she is the best in the land. In addition to providing a warm and friendly response to the many emails our company receives on a weekly basis, she also manages Mike and Kristin’s speaking and meeting schedules, and makes sure that team events go off without a hitch.

Nicole Goerges

Nicole Goerges is a Content Contributor & Special Consultant for The Honestly Adoption Company. She works with Mike and Kristin as a recurring co-host for the Honestly Adoption Podcast, and co-host of Kitchen Table Talks, exclusive video content for Oasis Community, along with Kristin. She is a fellow adoptive mom, and former foster parent.

Matt McCarrick

Matt McCarrick is the Content Production Specialist for The Honestly Adoption Company. If you’ve loved listening to our podcast, or enjoyed any of the videos trainings we’ve published, you have Matt to thank. He oversees all of our content production, from video edits, to making sure the tags are correct on YouTube, to uploading new videos to Oasis, to hitting publish on a podcast episode, he’s a content wonder!

Karen Anderson

Karen Anderson is the Community Engagement Specialist for The Honestly Adoption Company. She spends the bulk of her time interacting with, and helping, people through our various social media channels, as well as providing support for Oasis Community members through chat support or Zoom calls. In the same spirit as Beaver, Karen is also passionate about connecting with parents and making them feel loved and supported. Karen is also an FASD trainer and travels often, equipping and encouraging parents.

Beaver Trumble

Beaver Trumble is the Customer Care Specialist for The Honestly Adoption Company. Chances are, if you have been in need of technical support, or forgotten your password to one of our courses, you have interacted with Beaver. He is an absolute pro at customer care. In fact, he single-handedly revolutionized our customer care department last year. Beaver is passionate about connecting with parents and making them feel loved and encouraged.

Kristin Berry

Kristin Berry is the co-founder of, and Chief Content Specialist for, The Honestly Adoption Company. She spends most of her time researching and connecting with guests for our podcast, as well as direction, designing and publishing a lot of the content for our social media channels, blog and podcast. She loves to connect with fellow parents around the world, and share the message of hope with them.

Mike Berry

Mike Berry is the co-founder of, and Chief Marketing Specialist for, The Honestly Adoption Company. He spends the bulk of his time and energy designing and building many of the resources you see within our company, as well as social media and email campaigns. His goal is to use media as a means to encourage and equip parents around the world. He is also the co-host of The Honestly Adoption Podcast.