Posts Tagged ‘ dog adoption ’

Father Dearly Remembers an Adopted Stepchild Who Died

Friday, October 12th, 2012

Adopting a second dog made my family realize how much more work two is than only one. Dogs and kids, two is more work than one. That’s all I meant; it’s good to be reminded of how much work/love/chores/discipline you need for two. Not one — two is so much more.

That’s what I meant when I compared domestic child adoption to a rescue dog adoption. In fact, we did rescue a second dog after long conversations and hair-pulling, arguments and opinions. Adopt a new dog (my choice) to prepare for a second child who we adopt as a toddler and save from a life of abuse and neglect (husband’s choice).

And then, a miracle letter from a reader tho has gone through emotional torment when his adopted stepchild died. Read this letter about putting life into perspective.

Thanks for sending it:

“I also want to reply to this adopt a pet vs a child issue. All those getting upset about this are being silly. There are many reasons why a pet would be better off in a home than a child would. Perhaps financial constraints play a factor. The pet is much cheaper to care for. The pet and owner can provide much love for each other. Many times women get pregnant simply because they want someone to love them. They wind up making horrible mothers.  There is no requirement that you Must raise a child.

[Today, at this point ] I have no kids but I can’t afford a kid anyway. Suits me fine. I have more time and money to do the things that are important to me. If raising a child is important to you, go for it, but don’t sit there on your high horse and look down at those of us with different ideas about how life should be. That said, when I was a young man I did have a wife and a wonderful stepson.

I raised this boy for 5 years and loved him as my own. His biological father wanted nothing to do with him. Wife and stepson were killed in a car accident. That was over 20 years ago.

Took me years to get over that loss. A long, long time. You people need to get a grip and let people live how is best for them.”

Forgiveness can take forever. Leave your comments below:

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Readers React: “Can We Change Our Mind on Adoption?”

Wednesday, October 10th, 2012

Wow, I received a lot of flack from you readers on my former posts about feeling like the cost of international adoption is so deflating, and yet my family far prefers this option to a more open, domestic adoption. We even thought about trying to adopt a dog first to see if that will take the place of another being, another warm heart pumping, into our household. Well, the dog is working out great but the missing second child — on addition to my bio son Sam — is nowhere to be seen.

And adopting a second dog also made us realize again how much more work two is than one. Having one perfect beautiful bio child is pretty easy and amazing. But waiting for this missing daughter from India (who will be over four when we ever meet her) is losing its luster. My 6-year-old doesn’t even want to share his toys anymore.

Reader Renee said “I was adopted as an infant, but I already had an identity of my own. I was someone’s daughter BEFORE I was adopted. Any infant not born to you with be someone else’s son or daughter. It will have the genes, traits, abilities, talents, physical characteristics, etc., of its biological family, just as you have the genes, traits, abilities, talents, physical characteristics of yours and your husband has the genes, traits, abilities, talents, physical characteristics, etc., of his.

What your husband wants is a Cabbage Patch Kid. They sell them at Target; please go buy him one instead of helping him to destroy a human being with his mind-boggling narcissism.”

Thanks, I think, Renee. Adoption is hard enough without all the critiques and bad advice though.

“Let’s just stick with the dog,” I told my husband after reading a dozen nasty comments. And then, finally, one reader who happens to be a social worker responded, and helped me understand:

Lori said, “It sounds like you are exploring many options for building your family. It’s great that you reach out to people who can fill in what you haven’t yet experienced. It’s difficult, when you’re merely talking about a theoretical baby or child, to  ‘get deep down,’ that eventually you will be raising an actual child-tween-teen-adult who comes to you with her own blueprint, DNA, memories, traits, temperament, etc — things that are, in many ways, set. And removed from the influences of you and your husband.

“It can be a tough pill for a pre-adoptive parent to swallow, but it’s also a beautiful thing for a parent to watch a daughter who is yours (as in being claimed by, not as in ownership) blossom in surprising and unexpected ways.”

Thanks for all the pros and cons, tell me more in the comments below!

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Happy July 4th to Adopted Families USA

Wednesday, July 4th, 2012

As I watch children form a friendly circle around our local fireworks, I imagine all the kids that don’t have a neighborhood, or a happy home in which to celebrate today.

I think of these kids in foster care all the time now, and know how lucky I was growing up. Realize how lucky how my own biological son Sam is every single day.

Families in local foster care situations are trained for both foster care and adoption, and potential adoptive parents work closely with agency staff during the process. An adoption social worker is assigned to each parent; the social worker conducts home studies and offers emotional support and assistance through the process.

If we go the foster care route but then fall madly in love with the kid and have to return her to the family that once neglected her? Hmmm, fat chance I say. Then again, if she’s a real terror, has behavioral problems I can’t handle, or if she in any way upsets or harms my biological child, Sam, then what happens?

Can I give my foster care toddler back to the foster-to-adopt agency? Is that horrible to admit? There’s a lot going on in the news lately about returned children and foster care.


Happy July 4th to kids everywhere, and be careful with those firecrackers already. Tell me your adoption story in Comments below, and I may feature you in an upcoming post.



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Adopting a Pet? A Great Precursor to Adopting a New Child

Friday, March 30th, 2012

Okay, okay, okay, comparing my family’s quest to adopting a new baby from a foreign country to rescuing a mutt here in the United States is nonsensical and insensitive.

You’re right! I didn’t expect to hear from so many adopted adults who did not appreciate being compared to a mutt from the pound. I stand corrected, and I am sorry.

To all the dog rescue folks out there who are also adopted, this is a serious question: Don’t you think that caring and nurturing for a new and demanding pet is a great first step in preparation to a larger family? It taps into your own ability to think about someone or something besides yourself.

My prospective adoptive family has, indeed, adopted a second dog to see how much more work it is for us than only one dog. Why can’t we do that with a child too?

When I was single then newly married and it was only the two of us (only me and Darrin) we had total freedom to be, do and go where we wanted. Then came our pets (rescue dogs) and we began to learn about unselfish choices, staying home more, considering their needs along with our own… this is a valid argument!

Another valid argument: Many people who don’t want or even enjoy children can adopt and rescue animals and yet still treat them like bonafide offspring! From dressing them up to feeding them in monogrammed bowls and going on play dates, some adults treat their pets like adopted children. Isn’t that wonderful for their pets and also for the grown-ups?

Any act of kindness that allows you to grow as a human being has to be good for the planet and for all adoptees, too. (Human, canine, vegetal!) That’s what I’m getting at here.

Isn’t adopting a rescue dog (or cat or two!) a fantastic barometer of how you will be/act/mediate as an adopted parent? I am serious on this one…

Tell me what you think about adopting a dog to try out a new role as parent (before you can adopt a child!). I want to know your thoughts: Isn’t adopting a cat or dog a great precursor to adopting a child?

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Happy 2012, a Great Year to Adopt!

Monday, January 2nd, 2012

adoption, dog adoption I know you’re out there somewhere: I’ve met you at the occasional Pilates class (you were hogging my favorite spot!) and we’ve giggled on the playground sidelines. You’re the one trailing a shopping cart at the market and using your Blackberry ferociously. You are like me, or at least I hope you are.

My husband and I have been together and in love (most of the time — you know?) for nearly seven years and we have one beautiful biological boy named Sam who is the best thing ever. In fact, Darrin (my patient husband) and I still brawl about who wakes up with him on Sunday mornings. Sam is especially cuddly during weekend cartoons, so we both beg for the early-morning lovin’.

Sam is just about to turn six and he started asking us about his little sister, who is nonexistent. “When can I have a sister like [name of school friend]?

Sam does not appreciate my answers to the adoption dilemma. “You are the best, how can I ever top you?”

Four frowning eyes (two blue and two hazel) turn to me and my tender sweet son, murmurs, “But mommy, who can I play with?” Sam asks me with a little quiver starting in his juicy bottom lip.

Sam doesn’t care if our potential adopted child is an aquamarine Martian, two-headed with a spiky dragon-like tail… he just wants her. Now. In our house. My husband twirls his thumbs innocently during the exchange.

Sam says he’ll give up his big boy bed and sleep on the floor so his new sister can take his bed. He also tells me there are sick kids in the world who don’t have a mommy to call on when their tummy hurts at night, like he does. Sam reminds me that his friend Logan, at school, is adopted.

You know, like how we adopted our dog. We all love this dog and he was ADOPTED too. Yes, yes, I’m getting it now.

Sam grills on: “Aren’t there kids who need a mommy? Because you are good and cute and beautiful.” Thank you, Sam.

Parents, has adopting ever crossed your mind? Do you feel pressure from your spouse or child? I would love to know all about your adoption dilemma for the upcming year, and don’t stop celebrating either.

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