Here Are 19 Celebrities Who Have Shared Their Experiences With Either Being Adopted Or Becoming Adoptive Parents

Families can come in many different forms, and adopting children is a great option for anyone who is ready to expand their household and explore parenthood.

CBC / Via

Many celebrities have used their platform to talk openly about their experiences with adoption. Here are 19 public figures who have discussed either being adopted or adopting children themselves.

1.Rosario Dawson

Rosario and her daughter, Isabella, pose at Refinery29's "29Rooms: Turn It Into Art" event on September 7, 2017

"I told my mom when I was five years old that I was going to adopt, and I was going to adopt older because that was when I found out that my dad is not my biological father," Rosario said on The Kelly Clarkson Show in 2020. "And it just was so amazing to me that he married my mom when she was 18 years old with a one-year-old and raised me as his own."

Rosario adopted her daughter, Isabella, in 2014, when Isabella was 11 years old. In a 2021 interview with Parents, the Daredevil actor stated that Isabella's contact with her biological family had been limited in the past. She also said Isabella was taking "time to really work on herself and her own trauma" before meeting biological family members. Her daughter's healing process informed Rosario on how to address her own wounds that developed during her childhood years.

"I've got trauma from growing up in my biological family," Rosario said. "And so these past couple of years, [Isabella has] taught me so much about transforming and developing the benefits of therapy and being really conscious and intentional about self-care and boundaries ... I'm excited for, however, she wants to use that in the world moving forward, whether it is getting more in contact with some of that blood family or creating her own family or whatever it is she wants to do."

Aurora Rose / Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

2.Lana Condor

Lana Condor poses at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party on March 27, 2022

Lana was adopted from Vietnam when she was four months old. She has one brother, whom her parents took in from a separate adoption agency. In the past, she's opened up about her gratitude for being able to share this experience with others as a public figure.

"I love to talk about [adoption]," Lana told Elle in 2018. "I like to make people feel more comfortable, and it’s great to have this platform and be able to shed light on adoption and how it's a beautiful thing, instead of being tiptoed around. It’s been exciting for my parents as well. I hope that other girls who have been adopted are watching the journey. We can celebrate it. It’s a gift."

Karwai Tang / Getty Images

3.Nicole Kidman

Nicole Kidman sits with her children, Connor and Isabella, at a Los Angeles Lakers game in 2004

In the 2016 film, Lion, Nicole played Sue Brierley, whose adopted son, Saroo, found his biological mother in 2012 using Google Earth. Nicole told People in 2017 that she met Sue before playing her on-screen, and they "felt very, very connected" since Nicole has two adopted children, Connor and Isabella. The actor adopted them with her ex-husband, Tom Cruise, and she additionally has two biological daughters with her husband, Keith Urban. When asked about adopted children becoming curious to find their biological family, the Oscar-winning actor shared the guidance she's been offered.

"It's very much a part of the whole relationship, so it needs to be addressed [and] discussed I think," Nicole said of adopted children asking about their birth family. "As parents of adoptive children, the advice for us was, if they want to find their birth parents, you support that."

Matthew Simmons / Getty Images

4.Kristin Chenoweth

Kristin Chenoweth attends the Critics Choice Awards on March 13, 2022

Kristin, who was adopted as a baby, published a children's book about adoption in 2022 called What Will I Do with My Love Today? She said on Today that taking in a puppy inspired the book and called adoption "a great option" for families.

"I like to call it 'rescue,' and my dad always says, 'Man, did we win the lottery?!'" Kristin said. "I'm like, 'No, I won the lottery.'"

As she was growing up, Kristin's parents addressed why her biological mother had to put her up for adoption. They explained to Kristin that, although she wasn't able to care for her, her mom still had a lot of love for her.

"They always said, 'The lady that had you in her belly could not take care of you the way she wanted to, and she loved you so much,'" Kristin said. "And this is what my mom said: 'She gave you life, but we get to give you a life.'"

Steve Granitz / Getty Images

5.Hugh Jackman

Hugh Jackman and Deborra-lee Furness pose with their children, Ava and Oscar

Hugh and his wife, Deborra-Lee Furness, originally planned to have children both biologically and through adoption, he told People in 2017. After Deborra-Lee experienced a couple of miscarriages, they began adopting to expand their family and took in two children, Oscar and Ava.

The pair chose to adopt mixed-raced children because Hugh said they "knew from talking with people in that space ... that the biggest need is in mixed-race kids.” He further explained that, to him and Deborra-lee, what their adopted children looked like "never even was an issue."

"It doesn't matter what sexual [orientation] you are, it doesn't matter what job you do, it doesn't matter if your hair is straight or curly, if you're tall or short, man or woman, what race you are," Hugh said. "What defines you as a human is underneath all that."

Barry King / FilmMagic / Getty Images

6.Faith Hill

Faith Hill poses at the Screen Actors Guild Awards on February 27, 2022

As a child growing up in Mississippi, Faith knew that she'd been adopted by her parents. The country music star told Good Housekeeping in 2007 that she lived in "a loving, positive environment" as a child, and she didn't explore meeting her biological relatives until moving to Nashville to pursue music.

"There was a period of time when I first moved to Nashville, the first couple of years, that I was just simply lost. That's when I went on the search for my birth family," Faith said during a 2011 In the Spotlight With Robin Roberts interview.

Through this investigation, Faith not only met her birth mother and father, but she also found out that she has a biological brother. She developed a sense of peace in finally learning more about her roots, she revealed in her Good Housekeeping interview.

“I have a lot of respect for my birth mother and no feeling of anger or any of that,” Faith said. “I know she must have had a lot of love for me to want to give me what she felt was a better chance.”

Amy Sussman / WireImage / Getty Images

7.Viola Davis

Viola Davis and Genesis Tennon smile together at a pre-Emmy event in 2021

In 2015, Viola appeared on the cover of InStyle and discussed adopting her daughter, Genesis, per E! News. She and her husband, actor Julius Tennon, took Genesis in when she was a baby in 2011. For the cover story, the Fences star opened up about the importance of recognizing adoption as an option for those seeking out parenthood.

"There are so many ways to mother rather than to carry a child in your body," Viola said. "So many children need parents, and so many of us want to mother. Know that you will experience motherhood to the full extent."

Tiffany Rose / Getty Images for GBK Brand Bar

8.Ray Liotta

Ray Liotta poses at the premiere of "No Sudden Move" in 2021

Ray, who was adopted at six months old, tracked down his biological mother around 2004 and met with her to discuss her reasoning for putting him up for adoption. This was a healing experience for the late Goodfellas star, who previously felt upset about this part of his upbringing.

"I think it just made me realize that she did the best that she could with me," Ray said of meeting his mother in a 2014 Larry King Now interview. "I used to wear being adopted on my sleeve. 'How could you give up a kid?' That sort of thing. And [I] realize[d] when I met her that ... there were really valid reasons, and then realize[d] that almost 99% of kids that are put up for adoption are always for the betterment of the kid."

Santiago Felipe / Getty Images


10.Jamie Foxx

Jamie Foxx is pictured at the "Homecoming Weekend" event on February 12, 2022

In a 2017 episode of Beat Shazam, Jamie met a mother who'd adopted two children from Haiti, per Entertainment Tonight. He then got emotional as he spoke about being adopted when he was seven months old and raised by his loving grandmother.

"That's not actually my biological grandmother. That's somebody who said, 'I see something in that little boy that's very special,' and she made sure I had every tool that I needed to grow and expand," Jamie said. "I don't like to get emotional like that on camera, but what you don't understand is that, when you're a kid, you just want to be loved."

Alberto E. Rodriguez / Getty Images

11.Hoda Kotb


Snooki stops by SiriusXM Studios in February 2020

At six months old, Snooki was adopted from Santiago, Chile by her parents, who brought her back to their home state of New York. During her childhood, the reality TV star felt at ease with her adoption story.

"I was adopted, and I don't really talk about it because I just feel like my family is my family," Snooki said in a 2018 video posted on her YouTube channel. "I never really thought, 'Oh, what's my birth mother like? What's my birth family like?' Because I'm so content with my adopted parents and my adopted life and family."

When she was 21 years old, Snooki learned that her biological parents had other children when she was born, and they put her up for adoption because they couldn't afford to care for her. She said feels "blessed" to have her adoptive parents, and she'd be open to meeting her birth parents and family in the future.

"In the back of my head I'm always curious to meet my birth family," Snooki said. "I'm definitely interested. I don't know when I'm going to do it, but I'm interested."

Slaven Vlasic / Getty Images

13.Lionel Richie

Lionel Richie and Nicole Richie pose together at the House of Harlow 1960 x REVOLVE event on June 2, 2016

In a February 2022 interview with People, Lionel discussed adopting his daughter, TV star and fashion mogul Nicole Richie, when she was 9 years old. The legendary musician and his then-wife, Brenda Harvey, took Nicole in when her parents, who were friends of Lionel's, couldn't afford to care for her financially. Lionel, who is also a father to two biological children, Sofia and Miles, let Nicole know from a young age that he would always be there for her.

"Nicole was actually a godsend. She was a little girl who needed a shot," Lionel said. "She was used to people coming and going. She looked at me and I'd say, 'I'm not going anywhere.'"

Donato Sardella / Getty Images

14.Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs appears on stage for an Apple event to reveal the iPad 2 on March 2, 2011

In the 2011 book Steve Jobs, author Walter Isaacson explored the late Apple co-founder's life using information gathered from over 40 interviews with Steve, as well as chats with his family members, friends, and colleagues. Steve was adopted as an infant, and he told Walter that he always felt loved by his adoptive parents.

“There’s some notion that because I was abandoned, I worked very hard so I could do well and make my parents wish they had me back, or some such nonsense, but that’s ridiculous,” Steve said, per Considering Adoption. “Knowing I was adopted may have made me feel more independent, but I have never felt abandoned. I’ve always felt special. My parents made me feel special. They were my parents 1,000 percent.”

Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

15.Sandra Bullock

Sandra Bullock and her son, Louis, are pictured at the 2013 Venice International Film Festival, Sandra and her daughter, Laila, appear during a "Red Table Talk" interview

Sandra adopted her son, Louis, in 2010, before fostering then adopting a second child, Laila, in 2015. During a Red Table Talk interview, Sandra said when she was first introduced to Louis, she immediately had a feeling that it was the right time to adopt.

"When Louis came into my life, he was put in my arms at 10 days," Sandra said. "I just knew, and I said, 'This is my path.'"

The actor also spoke about her experiences with raising two Black children, including how she at times has wished the colors of their skin “matched.”

“To say that I wished our skins matched…sometimes I do. Because then it would be easier on how people approached us," Sandra said. “I have the same feelings as a woman with brown skin, and it being her babies. Or a white woman with white babies.”

She then stated her hopes for the future, saying, "Maybe one day that will go away. Maybe one day we will be able to see with different eyes.”

Jacopo Raule / FilmMagic / Getty Images, Entertainment Tonight / Via

16.Keegan-Michael Key

Keegan-Michael Key smiles at the Webby Awards on May 16, 2022

When he appeared on Off Camera with Sam Jones in 2016, Keegan-Michael explained that he always tries to show up early to gatherings so he won't feel left out. Although he has a relationship with his birth mother, the Key & Peele star believes this mindset is a result of being adopted, which is also part of what led him to his Hollywood career.

"I think it goes [comes] from being adopted," Keegan-Michael said. "I think that there's some kind of latent sense of panic that I'm going to get left or something. There's something to it, ... something about that. And then cut to now, and that's why I'm an actor."

Keegan-Michael went on to say that his biological mom still has guilt over putting him up for adoption, but he's expressed his appreciation to her for doing what served him best.

"Every time I call her, I just go, 'The proof's in the pudding,'" he said. "'You made a selfless act. You chose to do a selfless thing, and look where I am.'"

Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images for The Webby Awards

17.Angelina Jolie

Angelina Jolie poses with her children, Knox, Vivienne, Pax, Shiloh, Zahara and Maddox at the "Boy Who Harnessed The Wind" screening in 2019

Angelina has three adopted children, Maddox, Pax, and Zahara, as well as three biological children, Shiloh, Vivienne, and Knox. She and her ex-husband, Brad Pitt, adopted Maddox from Cambodia, Pax from Vietnam, and Zahara from Ethiopia. In 2020, she opened up about raising biological and adopted siblings together for a Vogue India interview.

"All adopted children come with a beautiful mystery of a world that is meeting yours," Angelina said. "When they are from another race and foreign land, that mystery, that gift, is so full. For them, they must never lose touch with where they came from. They have roots that you do not. Honour them. Learn from them. It’s the most amazing journey to share. They are not entering your world, you are entering each other’s worlds."

Monica Schipper / Getty Images for Netflix

18.Jordan Fisher

Jordan Fisher arrives at the Nickelodeon Kid's Choice Awards on April 09, 2022

Jordan's maternal grandmother and stepgrandfather, Pat and Rodney, took him in when his biological mother gave birth to him at 16 and was "not fit to raise a kid," he told People in 2017. They later also adopted a boy and a girl who are Jordan's biological siblings. The actor praised Pat and Rodney for their generosity in offering him and his siblings a positive home life.

“I was blessed to be taken in by two most selfless, loving, caring, beautiful people I’ve ever known,” Jordan said of his adoptive parents. “They took me out of any potential environment that would have not been good for me.”

Frazer Harrison / Getty Images

19.Diane Keaton

Diane Keaton and her kids, Duke and Dexter, pose at the American Film Institute's 45th Life Achievement Award Gala after party in 2017

At age 50, Diane began her role as a mother when she adopted her daughter, Dexter, in 1996. She adopted her second child, a son named Duke, in 2001. During a 2010 CBS interview with Katie Couric, the Something's Gotta Give star became emotional while discussing how adoption has positively impacted her life.

"Motherhood is ... by far the best choice I ever made," Diane said. "What can I say? ... It's just too profound."

She later told Mario Lopez in a 2013 Extra interview that Dexter and Duke playing sports exposed her to athletics for the first time in her life. This also led to her interacting with more people in their community.

"It opens a whole new universe," Diane said of adopting and raising her kids. "Every single aspect of your life changes. It' so great, and you become much more community-driven because you meet people you would never meet, which is always better."

Michael Kovac / Getty Images for AFI