By rights we shouldn’t care what celebrities have to say about adoption. We really shouldn’t.
We shouldn’t pay any more attention to what they say about the joys or the struggles of adopting than to what our friends or people we know say about them.
But we do.
Because the truth is most of our friends and people we know aren’t trying to adopt a baby or have an adoption connection.
But many celebrities do.
So when we see their stories splashed across the cover of People magazine or hear about a famous person who has been touched by adoption, our ears prick up, we lean in and pay close attention to what they have to say.
It doesn’t matter who the celebrity is, whether we’ve watched their movie, heard their song, read their book, or know who they are.
It doesn’t even matter if we like them or not.
All it takes is for them to say one small thing, and suddenly we’re glued.
A connection is forged, and from that point on they’re on our radar. Everything they say and do matters.
I don’t know about you but this has happened to me a million times with all kinds of celebrities.
Debra Harry. Ray Liotta. Greg Louganis. Scott Hamilton. Charlize Theron. Kirstie Alley. The list goes on.
I was familiar with them, I knew who they were, and I may have followed them from a distance. But I never paid them much attention — until I learned about their adoption connection.
After that, everything changed .
This was especially true when we were just starting out and feeling anxious and insecure about all of the unknowns ahead of us.
Hearing a famous person speak about their adoption experience really opened things up for us.
It put our minds at rest and gave us that extra nudge we needed to move forward with our plan on those days when we had doubts about whether we were doing the right thing or would ever bring our baby home.
By leveraging their fame, celebrities have made adoption more mainstream and accepted by society.
They’ve changed it from something that was talked about in hushed tones to part of the national conversation.
And that’s made it easier for the rest of us.
In a world where many people still misunderstand what adopting is and involves, their stories and experiences have helped validate our decisions and made us feel more comfortable with our choices and less alone.
Here’s a small tribute to 10 celebrities who have have raised the profile of adoption — who have taken out the fear and uncertainty and put hope, love, encouragement and inspiration in its place.
1. “Anyone who doesn’t have experience with adoption wonders, ‘Does love for a child come through DNA?’ I knew it didn’t.” Katherine Heigl, actress and and adoptive mother.
2. “You don’t have to give birth to someone to have a family. We’re all family — an extended family.” Sandra Bullock, actress and and adoptive mother.
4. “However motherhood comes to you, it’s a miracle.” Valerie Harper, actress and and adoptive mother.
5. “From the moment we started the adoption process, all the anxiety went away.” Hugh Jackman, actor and and adoptive father.
6. “Biology is the least of what makes someone a mother.” Oprah Winfrey, talk show host and half-sister of adoptee.
7. “I have a lot of respect for my birth mother. I know she must have had a lot of love for me to want to give what she felt was a better chance. ” Faith Hill, singer and adoptee.
8. “They as much my blood as I am theirs.” Brad Pitt, actor and adoptive father.
9. “We look at adoption as a very sacred exchange. It was not done lightly on either side.” Jamie Lee Curtis, actress and adoptive mother.
10. “If the standard route for creating a family had worked for me, I wouldn’t have met this child. I needed to know her. I needed to be her mother. She is, in every way, my daughter.” Nia Vardalos, actress and adoptive mother.
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