What is a Gotcha Day?


Have you ever had an adopted friend and once a year they say it’s their Gotcha Day? Then you get put in that weird position where you want to ask what it is but you feel a little awkward.

Fear not! As an adoptee myself, I’ve seen the looks on people's faces when I celebrate my Gotcha Day on January 3rd every year. In this brief post, I will break down the basics of what a Gotcha Day is and explain why it is so special to adoptees and their families!

In short terms, a Gotcha Day is the day when the adoptee was adopted by their parents. Today, May 27th is my brother, Cooper’s Gotcha Day. 19 years ago he was adopted in Vietnam. My parents made the long trip across seas to go adopt him. The day they first saw him and then adopted him is known as his Gotcha Day.

Everyone celebrates their Gotcha Day differently, while some may not even celebrate it at all which is completely ok. In my family, we kind of treat it like a Birthday. We have a dinner together whether it’s going out to eat, or staying in and having a nice home cooked meal. We also get a present too. :)

Today, to celebrate my brother, we made brownies, had a chicken dinner, and he got some gift cards and money. Also, he’s had an obsession with bowling, so after dinner we went bowling at a local bowling alley. It is a pretty relaxed day where we just reflect on his 19 years in the this family. It is a big day for us because Cooper has been such a joy. He may be pretty annoying, but honestly, I’m glad adoption brought us together because he has been a pretty good brother.

I think it really depends on the family and how they decide on how to celebrate, but it varies.

Like I said, it is a quick post, but I thought it was definitely needed because a lot people don’t know about Gotcha Days. However, all adoptees have a Gotcha day whether they celebrate it or not.

© Made of Love Not Genes 2020