A boy in Zoe's class said he felt sorry for women, since they had to go through labor. Zoe informed him smartly that women didn't HAVE to go through labor, they could always adopt! The little boy responded that he wanted a "child of my own." Zoe understood that right away to mean that he didn't want to adopt, he wanted to have a biological child. She asked him why he didn't want to adopt, and he just shrugged.
That usage, "child of my own," to mean biological child is something that adoptive parents rail against. We're driven crazy by statements/questions like this:
Would you rather adopt or have a child of your own?
[P]ersonally, if I do not get married nor have a child of my own around the age of 25, I am adopting.
And whether we adopt or use a surrogate, or have our own natural child. . . .
Now that you’ve adopted you'll probably get pregnant and have a child of your own.
It even makes this list of top 10 things not to say to adoptive parents, in the number 1 spot even, with the appropriate response:
Is it difficult to love a child who isn’t your own?Of course, one could object to either adopted or biological children being termed "a child of my own," with its connotation of ownership. But if you're going to call one a "child of my own," then by golly, call both that! Any other usage brands adopted children as second-class citizens, Plan B, the last resort.
My children are my own — both of them. Yes, I know what you mean. And I repeat: both of my children are "my own."
I was really surprised that the little boy, aged 10 or 11, already knew that phrase, and had already internalized the heirarchy of biological parentage over adoption.
As she usually does, Zoe did a good job standing up for herself and adoption. It's just too bad she has to.