Our expert says:
I don't think there are any fixed rules, and it obviously depends to some extent on the circumstances and your relationship with the child. I don't think there's any advantage in waiting till 18, and would be more likely to deal woith it when the child asks a relevant question, or when otherwise a good opportunity arises. Then the emphasis is on how special it is that they were specially chosen by you out of love for them. Maybe later around 18 a child may become curious again and want to seek out their birth-parent(s), and when this happens and they are teens or adults, there's no point in discouraging them, except to warn that this can be a very disappointing exercise, as well as difficult to accomplish.
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