Since I am adopted, and there are other adoptions in my various lines, I have given considerable thought on how to record this situation in TMG. I deactivate and do not use the standard "Adoption" tag type to avoid confusion. I defined four custom tag types in the Other group for this situation: Adoptee, AdoptGive, Adopted, and AdoptLink. I also created two tag types in the Name group: Name-Adopted and Name-Birth.
When much of the data, including the parents, is unknown I use the Adoptee tag type, and have the child as the Principal. The child is set to one of two roles depending on the two possible situations. If I only know the birth name and the fact of adoption and have no information from that point, I set the role to "Ward". If I only know the adopted name and the fact of adoption and have no information before that point, I set the role to "Adoptee".
Adoptee Tag Type
Adoptee: "[P] was adopted<[D]><[L]><[M]>" Ward: "[P] was given up for adoption<[D]><[L]><[M]>" Witness: "[W] witnessed the adoption of [P] <[D]><[L]><[M0]><[WM]>"
When the parents are known, for the two separate events of disconnection from the birth parents and connection to the adopting parents I use the separate AdoptGive and Adopted tag types respectively with the parents as the Principals and the child(ren) as Witness(es). The disadvantage of the child as a Witness is that one is required to set the Preference for "Show witnessed events" to see these adoption events in the child’s Person View. As I always have that display preference set, it is not an issue for me. By having two separate tags it allows for the typical passage of time between these two events, which may even occur in separate locations. Further it decouples the two events, as either one may occur without the other. The children may be adopted as a result of being orphaned rather than due to a release of parental rights. Alternatively the parental rights may be released and the child put in an adoption home but never adopted.
The child would be a Witness using the role "child" on my AdoptGive event tag type, where the birth parents are the Principals using the roles "BirthMother" as P1 and "BirthFather" as P2. The tag has any source citations and gives details of the release of parental rights using a split memo. [M1] provides adoption details, [M2] an optional comment specific to the BirthMother, and [M3] an optional comment specific to the BirthFather. Each child’s sentence uses the [M1] adoption details and its own specific optional [WM]. This allows a single AdoptGive tag to be used when multiple children are given up for adoption at the same time. It even allows for linking others using the standard Witness role with their separate witness memos to this release of parental rights.
AdoptGive Tag Type
BirthMother (P1): Male: "--BirthMother must be female" Female: "[P]< and [PO]> gave [RG:child] up for adoption<[M1]><[D]><[L]>.< [M2]>" BirthFather (P2): Male: "[P]< and [PO]> gave [RG:child] up for adoption<[M1]><[D]><[L]>.< [M3]>" Female: "--BirthFather must be male" child: "[W] was given up for adoption by [P]< and [PO]><[M1]><[D]><[L]>.< [WM]>" Witness: "[W] witnessed [P] <and [PO]> giving [R:child] up for adoption<[M1]><[D]><[L]>.< [WM]>"
On my Adopted event tag the child would also be a Witness but using the role "adoptee", with the adopting parents as the two Principals using their role "Adoptor". I usually set the father to P1 and the mother to P2. This tag includes any citations such as court records and uses an unsplit memo for any details about the adoption. A single Adopted tag can be used when multiple children are adopted at the same time as a single event, each with their own unique [WM], regardless of whether they share birth parents, and even allows for linking others using the standard Witness role with their separate witness memos to this single adoption event.
Adopted Tag Type
Adoptor: "[P1] <and [P2]> adopted [R:Adoptee]<[D]><[L]><[M]>" adoptee: "[W] was adopted by [P1] <and [P2]><[D]><[L]><[M0]><[WM]>" Witness: "[W] witnessed the adoption of [R:Adoptee] by [P1] <and [P2]><[D]><[L]><[M0]><[WM]>"
Assuming a name change, the child could be assigned either or both of my two custom Name-Var tag types: Name-Birth and Name-Adopted. This allows either Name-Var tag to be marked Primary, and either name to be used as appropriate in events.
Name-Birth Tag Type
Principal: "[PP] birth name was [N] <[M]>"
Name-Adopted Tag Type
Male: "Upon adoption he was named [N] <[M]>" Female: "Upon adoption she was named [N] <[M]>"
Either or both Name-Var tags could be created depending upon the information available. If I only create one TMG "person" for the child I might link both sets of parents, one using the "-bio" relationship tags and the other using "-ado", and then set whichever I prefer to Primary, accepting the consequences in various reports. Sometimes it is appropriate to create two separate TMG "persons" for this single child, where each "person" has only one set of parents linked and they are Primary. In addition to their "standard" Name-Var the "other" name can be noted with the appropriate Name-Var. These two TMG "persons" are linked with the custom AdoptLink tag type, P1 as the birth "person" using the role BirthName, and P2 as the adopted "person" using the role AdoptedName. The split memo uses [M1] as an optional memo for the BirthName sentence, and [M2] a separate optional memo for the AdoptedName.
AdoptLink Tag Type
BirthName (P1): "[P1] was named [P2+] following adoption<[D]><[L]>.< [M1]>" AdoptedName (P2): "[P2] was named [P1+] prior to adoption<[D]><[L]>.< [M2]>"
Hope this gives people ideas,