DEAR ABBY: My husband and I have two wonderful sons who joined our family through adoption. While we don't broadcast that they are adopted, it sometimes comes up in conversation. When it does, people inevitably ask, "What happened to their 'real' parents?" or, "Why were they given up?"
I know folks are curious, but these comments are hurtful. The details of my sons' lives are private, to be shared as they grow in age-appropriate ways. They know they are adopted, but are too young to know the details surrounding their lives prior to joining our family. I do not want to have an in-depth conversation with every person who asks a nosy question. These questions always seem to come up when the kids are around and I feel unprepared to answer them.
Do you have any suggestions for a witty and confident response that can shut down these questions? I don't want my boys to be ashamed that they were adopted, but I also don't want the details out there for public consumption. -- ADOPTED MOM IN INDY
DEAR ADOPTED MOM: That someone would be so insensitive as to pose those questions in front of the children is disconcerting. While I can't think of a "witty" response that would deter the questioner, I can think of one that would be effective. Look the person in the eye, smile and say, "Oh, that's a long story, but look at what beautiful sons I have. I feel truly blessed."