I Wished for You by Marianne Richmond

“Mama,” said Barley. “Tell me again how I’m your wish come true.” Barley is a little bear asking about his birth story, as many adoptees do. Mama Bear explains to Barley that he was wished for and the story elaborates on the process that Mama Bear went through to bring Barley home. All adoptive families have a unique story to share with their little one and this story helps to start that conversation in a way younger (age 5-6) can connect with. This age is full of questions so there’s no doubt that adoption has come up or will come up as your child grows.

Most parents, perhaps especially adoptive parents, might say their child is a wish come true. Every child needs to feel cherished and wanted and this book sends that message loud and clear. This may spark specific questions from your child about their birth parents and adoption story. Full disclosure: Some may disagree how Mama Bear answered some questions. Mama Bear talks about how God chose Barley for her and that “what makes a family is their love for each other.” Depending on your beliefs, both lovely and accurate statements. However, some may feel this is dismissive of birth families and their role in the child’s life and adoption. That is up to you to decide. It’s almost important to remember this book is not the only message your child will receive from you about adoption.

Your child may feel a variety of different feelings, which is normal and appropriate. You know your child and you know what would be helpful or comforting. This book may or may not fit the bill for you. Since the story is a mostly adoptive parent perspective, there’s some pieces of adoption that are not fully discussed. However, the author captures the longing that adoptive parents often have for their child. What a gift to be a child who is longed for! This may be the message your child needs to hear right now as they learn more about themselves and their adoption.

With all books about adoption, feel empowered to preview before you share with your child. Just because it’s sold, doesn’t mean it will be the right fit or message at this point in your child’s life. Just like adults, children process big concepts at their own pace and you know better than anyone where your child is. Do not be afraid to reach out for support if you’re not sure what step to take next with your child in terms of understanding and processing adoption. Call us, your home study agency or a local counselor who specializes in adoption.

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