Posts Tagged ‘ single parent adoption ’

Adoption Challenges Throughout the Holidays

Friday, December 7th, 2012

adoption challenges holiday Last weekend, my family was visiting our cool Hollywood friends for casual festivities, having a few cocktails with a few creative couples when one dynamic duo (and I mean that seriously) launched into a heart-warming holiday tale about their Echo Park neighbors who finally adopted — after a brutal three-year wait — a lovely Ethiopian toddler who is perfect and quiet in every way.

They will celebrate a son, newly named Ben. Beautiful Ben. Can’t help but dream of his pretty face, long eye lashes. I feel scared for myself at how easy the images burn my eyelids. Did they travel across a desert for him? Were his family nomads in Ethiopia?

I lose track of the conversation and five minutes later, I blurt out loudly:

“Is there something wrong with him? Can he speak? Why is the little boy so quiet?” I ask, the ever-present adoptive mother questions. Too loudly, almost rudely.

My husband raises an eyebrow, like, “I cannot believe you just said that.” Thankfully the adopted kid and his ecstatic parents have not arrived yet but my husband gives me the death stare, and our mutual friend wonders out loud, ” Why does there have to be soothing wrong with a happy adopted 2-year-old?”

Without thinking, I launch into my tired adoption diatribe about reactive-attachment disorder, “so many kids nearing three years old have reactive-attachment syndrome and blah blah blah blah.”

“…and if he’s only two then there’s a bigger chance he was…blah, blah”

And blah.

Party pooper. I’m sick of myself — are you? Everyone is shuffling around the cheese plate looking suddenly uncomfortable. Uh, yeah.

I stop in mid blah and nibble a few appetizers. Have another cocktail I may not need. Adoption envy ensues. I am quiet and helpful in the kitchen for the next 15 minutes and the new adoptive loving gorgeous perfect family never shows anyway because the little slow, quiet little Ethiopian son (kissing!) has a horrid cold.

Are you in the process of adoption? Are you filled with hope and longing when you meet other parents waiting too?

Tell me your own story in Comments below.

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Celebrating National Adoption Month with Hillary Clinton

Wednesday, November 28th, 2012

national adoption month for toddlersThis past month of November, America celebrated National Adoption Month with feel-good stories each week, and I have another one for you below. However, before you read another installation of a new Adoption Diary, check out what Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said as she opened legislation at the top of the month. Her words are inspiring for parents everywhere.

Announcing her support for National Adoption Month, Hillary Clinton said, “Over the last ten years, American families have opened their hearts and homes to more than 200,000 children from other countries. They have given vulnerable children the opportunity to thrive. Families who adopt are enriched by the love of their new children, and the heritage they bring from their birth countries. This November, we celebrate National Adoption Month and join with groups across the nation to recognize these special families. The State Department is committed to safeguarding the interests of children, birth parents, and adoptive parents worldwide.” — Hillary Clinton 2012

Here’s the happy new adoption story. Tammy Gilmore decided to do her part in it this Thanksgiving Day with a second adoption.

Only a year earlier, Gilmore adopted a 3-year-old boy named Alexander. Gilmore is a single mother who works for an attorney who has experience working with adoptive families in the Iowa area. She adopted Alexander and was then driven to adopt his little brother as well. Gilmore went through IowaKids.net, which is a website where many agencies collaborate in order to help people who want to foster and adopt children. There are several agencies in cooperation in this partnership.

The agencies that are in partnership attempt to find homes for the over 700 children eligible for adoption and the 6,000 that are in foster care. There are over 1000,000 kids in the United States waiting to be adopted.

Learn more about foster care and adoption here. Tell me your story below in the comments.

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International Adoption Policies Improve Every Year

Friday, September 21st, 2012

As my family moves forward with the potential to adopt a toddler daughter from India, we also learn that international adoption relieves resource-starved nations of the burden of supporting un-parented children.

The additional costs those orphaned children will exact as they graduate from childhoods of deprivation to adulthood — where they will also disproportionately populate the ranks of the unemployed, the homeless, and the incarcerated.

There are millions of un-parented children exist worldwide, growing up in institutions, on the streets, in group homes, in foster care, and in families where they may suffer abuse and neglect.

International adoption (at its peak in the early years of the twenty-first century) provided homes for roughly 40,000 children annually, including more than 20,000 homes in the United States, according to the Department of State. 

The UN’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs stated in 2010 that international adoption brings new resources into countries in the form of adoption fees and charitable contributions. While wars between nations and hostility between different ethnic groups are, sadly, part of our present, so is globalization and the continuing trend to taking care of kids caught in conflict, famine and poverty.

After two years of contemplating an international adoption, I do understand the need for such excessive paperwork via home studies and I accept that foreign countries have whole sets of different immigration laws and needs, but adopting a baby in need from a different and far-flung country should not be quite so difficult.

But adopting a toddler child from a group home in India (who so desperately needs a mom and dad) should not take more than two years.

We’ll miss the most formative two years of our kid’s life. I call foul, I don’t like the odds. And so we keep planning to double our odds, and we have begun filing paperwork for a domestic adoption training class at the same time.

How long do you think an international adoption should honestly take with valid security questions and the kid’s care uppermost in everyone’s mind? One year? Why can’t we rush through the  international immigration and customs process and why does it take two years to adopt from India? Arrrgh.

Tell me your adoption story here in Comments below:

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Revisiting a Foster Mom with 30 Kids, 5 Adopted

Wednesday, September 5th, 2012

domestic adoption foster careWhen we first published this story about an angel of a foster mom who has taken in 30 foster kids over the last few years, we got some great comments, everyone wanted to know what kind of big-hearted family takes in 30 kids.

The Foster mom who asked to be called “Mom of 9″ (only 9 at home now) said, “As a foster parent who has fostered and adopted five of them, I have experience with many kinds of abuse cases. It’s much more common than you think. Not only foster kids hurting biological kids, but foster siblings assaulting each other and even step-siblings assaulting each other. ”

Mom of 9 said that when it comes to sexual abuse in foster care, age is not a factor. She said, “We once had an 8-year-old boy placed with us that ended up being inappropriate towards our other sons. The county didn’t tell us until after he’d been in our home a few days that there was a risk of that because of what he’d been exposed to previously.”

Mom of 9 also said, “When someone adopts a child, the county is required by law to disclose their entire history of abuse but foster parents don’t get the same treatment; they are expected to take a child with only general information. We once had a six-year-old girl with us for three days  and the county didn’t tell us until three days later that she required an inhaler and an Epi-pen for emergencies. Her older sister finally mentioned it.”

She believes there should be stricter laws and legislation to protect and serve all children in foster care. What do you guys think?

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If France Legalizes Same-Sex Adoptions, Why Not the USA?

Friday, August 24th, 2012

adoption domestic and internationalWith so many unloved orphans in the world, born during times of great war and poverty, why would our government forbid gay couples, or “same sex couples” from adopting an unwanted child?

In France, a more forward-thinking country — you must admit, in this case — the new Socialist government would likely legalize marriage and adoption for same-sex couples, Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said back in July.

President Francois Hollande, who took office months ago, pledged to legalize gay marriage and adoption during his election campaign but had given no time frame. Since Hollande’s Socialists won an absolute majority in parliamentary elections two weeks ago, the conservative  party, which opposed the measure under former president Nicolas Sarkozy, can do nothing to stop it.

“The government has made it an objective for the next few months to work on implementing its campaign commitments on the fight against discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity,” Ayrault’s office said in a statement.

In addition, the government would discuss strategies for making life easier for transgender people. This is very forward-thinking  — to me — from France, a country that describes itself as “two-thirds Roman Catholic.

As recently as 2006, a survey indicated that most French were opposed to changing the definition of marriage, but now more than 60 percent support the idea. A majority also favors allowing gay couples to adopt children.

(Independent French thinker Hollande, by the way, fathered four children out of wedlock with his former partner.) No judgements on fatherhood but…

Do you think gay couples should be allowed to legally adopt a child? Tell me your adoption opinion here.

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