What's the appropriate thing to say when someone tells you they're adopting?
One word: "Congratulations!"
You might also say: "That is wonderful news", "I am so happy for you", or as one of my friends put it " Omigod, you're having a baby!"
Things I personally don't want to hear right after my announcement:
"My aunt/co-worker/friend's cousin adopted a child"
And why should I care? Unless one of your best friends adopted, and you were therefore involved in the process, or I also know the person you are referring to, I frankly don't care. It makes it sound like you're trying to make me feel like it's okay to adopt and I'm not the only one. Which are not facts that are new to me. Or you're trying to tell me that you know all about adoption, which unless one of your very close friends went through it, you don't. And quite frankly, and maybe selfishly, this moment is not about you, it's about me!
"My friend/husband's niece's brother-in-law/some random person I've heard of adopted and they had to give the child back"
also: "XYZ adopted and their child turned out to be mentally ill/handicapped"
That's like you telling me that you're pregnant and me responding with "I have a friend that was pregnant and she lost her child in the 8th month of pregnancy" or "My co-worker was pregnant and her child was born with no feet and they had to carry him everywhere for the rest of his life".
And this is one I just love: "XYZ adopted - and then they got pregnant."
Sure, there's nothing like adoption to cure someone's alleged infertility. I guess if this is your answer, you are assuming that they were infertile, and still desperatly want a bio child, and that the same is the case for me. (I suspect you must also be one of those people who give advice like "Just relax and you'll get pregnant" or "My friend tried to become pregnant for 4 years and then went to the beach and came back preggers"). This comment is offensive to everyone; those who indeed struggled with infertility, and those who chose adoption even if they might be able to have bio kids.
Seriously, people, a simple "congrats" will do!