So say you’re a white adoptive parent, and you decide your kid should go to language school. Because he or she should learn about his or her heritage. So you get to the school, and there are two adults present. One is the same color as your kid. The other is white. And the adult the same color as your kid smiles and says hello. What should you do?
a. Smile back and introduce yourself.
b. Feel relieved that those people don’t hate you after all.
c. Turn away without saying anything. Steer your child around to where the white parent and child of color are sitting and make lots of friendly noises. Make a big deal about your child sitting in the seat next to the child with the white parent. When you find out that seat is taken (please note the books on the desk), grab another chair and squeeze it in between the two. Even though there are plenty of seats that are open in the room, including next to the adult of color, whom you take care not to look at. Then engage in some white-mom-bonding, in which you and the other parent talk about how cuuuute the other’s child is. (By the way, I find this kinda creepy when kids are walking and talking, but really creepy when kids are school-aged.)
Just a hypothetical, mind you.
And while I’m at it, I gotta wonder … what do you think your child thinks when he or she observes this scene?