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I think adoption is necessary in some cases…
Posted: 05 October 2009 10:30 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  27
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But it doesn’t seem to occur to a whole lot of people what has to happen in order for the adoption TO proceed…

Before the adoptive parents even enter the picture with the referrals, the adoption taxes, the health expenses, etc.

Why aren’t people being supported to keep their own children?

黃 美玲

Transracial Chinese adoptee, in contact with her original family for 3 years
~ reunited overseas for 3 months with a culture/language barrier

Posted: 06 October 2009 06:39 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  11
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hi Iggy,

I think most thoughtful AP’s do think about that. We wouldn’t be parents without our children’s birthparents. My children are from China and there are a whole suite of reasons why they ended up in an institution, not just the One-Child family planning policy. That’s well beyond my ability to change, as it will require the Chinese government and a system of social values that have been in place for centuries to change. And that is actually happening with the modernization of China, and leading to long waits for adoption. We also support groups that provide aid both to children in insitutions and education for impoverished children in China, and we have a been helping a family in Nigera via Plan USA for many years. We get nothing from this beyond the knowledge that we are doing the right thing; since we have the means to do it, we have an obligation to help the those in need.

Unfortunately there are people who are biologically capable of being parents but are not emotionally, or mentally ready or able to parent. There are birthparents who have substance abuse issues. If you know anything about the pinciples behind AA, you know that you can’t make a person change - they have to want to. There are birth parents who were abused and haven’t gotten out of that syndrome. Yes assistance can be provided but is it fair to a child to live in an abusive/dangerous home even while their parent works it out, possibly fails many times?

It’s never black and white. My 5 year old longs for her birthmother in a painful way. It hurts me to know that she suffers. But that decision was made- as you pointed out -  long before we came into the picture, probably by adults in her birthfamily. The name given by her institution would clearly brand her as a person without a family. Would it have been better for her to live in an institution, likely never get a higher education, age out to work in a sweatshop or as a servant if she wasn’t sucked in to the sex trade?

Yes there is corruption in some international adoption, and we hope and pray that our children were not taken from a loving family, but we will probably never know that. The US Foster Care system is a mess and children seem to have the least right of all. I know from my daughter’s pain that adoption might not be the solution a child might wish for, but it is a solution that can allow children to lead safe and loved lives.

Jennfer W

Posted: 06 October 2009 06:41 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  27
Rank

Yes assistance can be provided but is it fair to a child to live in an abusive/dangerous home even while their parent works it out, possibly fails many times?

This is assuming the child comes from an abusive family. I’m not saying that there *isn’t* ever any abuse or neglect in a biological family, but I’m honestly tired of seeing it as the default “reasoning.”

It happens, but it shouldn’t be used as the basis for an argument, especially since it’s not always true.

黃 美玲

Transracial Chinese adoptee, in contact with her original family for 3 years
~ reunited overseas for 3 months with a culture/language barrier

Posted: 06 October 2009 06:42 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  27
Rank

P.S. I know it’s more complicated than that.

But money is a powerful leader in influencing possible corruption… especially in IA.

黃 美玲

Transracial Chinese adoptee, in contact with her original family for 3 years
~ reunited overseas for 3 months with a culture/language barrier

Posted: 09 October 2009 06:13 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  11
Rank

I’ve been following international adoption and China in particular for many years and to the best of my knowledge, less than a handful, perhaps 10, children have been reunited with birthfamilies – only with the active participation of adoptive parents. In the majority of those cases, the child was voluntarily given up.  Because it is illegal to abandon a child in China but there is no legal avenue for families to give up a child for adoption (because that was felt to undermine the One-Child policy), the “search” for birthparents is cursory if done at all- sort of a don’t ask, don’t tell. So families who did not want to give up their child may not be able to find them (kidnapping is a major issue in China, but most of those children are domestically; “adopted” by childless families, become brides (sex imbalance in some areas is 120- 100), beggars, or sex workers, and do not go into IA. Since 1992, about 60,000 children have been internationally adopted from China out of a population of 1.3 Billion. Estimates are of up to 1- 2 million+ children have been abandoned/separated from their families but are not in state care that might channel them to IA or domestic adoption. Until recently there were over 1000 government institutions in China for children, but less than 20%, about 200, were open to IA. The Chinese government recently made it easier for the majority of institutions to place children for IA, but that has not been the case for most of the history of IA in China. In the southern industrial provinces, it’s assumed that most children enter an SWI are from internal undocumented migrant workers who can’t register or get pregnancy permits. In the west and north, very few healthy children are abandoned at all, and most kids in care have some form of special need that would require costly medical treatment.

The UN Hague international Adoption agreement, in which most receiving counties are signers, prohibits children being trafficked. Vietnam is closed to IA again because of indications of corruption in one province. Ditto Cambodia, and Guatemala is likely to close. An American adoptive father who lives and works in China exposed the current scandal in China about Gov officials taking children because of the IA fees. No one knows what this will do to IA in China. A previous scandal about baby buying in Henan lead to the closing of adoption from that province for a year - and death sentences for some of the participants.

In Guat, Ethiopia and Vietnam, it’s generally crushing poverty that makes families decide to give up children – at least in an institution they will be fed.

And US Foster Care (roughly a half million children at any given time)  - the reason that kids enter that system is because their birth families were found to be incapable of taking care of them or even presenting a danger. That’s not an excuse, that’s the sad reality.

In the Russia’s it’s a similar situation, but the drug of choice is alcohol and they are much brisker about terminating parental rights.

In the best of all possible worlds, all families would be able to love and care for,  feed, clothe and educucate their children. That’s not the world we live in. You are hearing this as justification for adoption - it’s not, it’s a very sad state of affairs. Being an adoptive parent has not stopped me from trying to change it in ways that I can, so families can stay together. But that doesn’t negate the positive side of adoption either. It’s not a perfect system, but for the majority of kids that are available for IA worldwide, adoption is a lot better than living in an institution, on the street, being sexually abused or exploited, or starving to death – which is the fate of hundreds of thousands of their contemporaries.

Jennifer W

 
 
 
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