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Dealing With a Loss in Adoption

Grief and Depression from Failed International Addoption

I am having a very difficult time emotionally. We have been working on an adoption from Taiwan since April 2017. We did everything the US and Taiwan agencies and government asked for. Then we were approved and started bonding with the children over Skype last November 2017. We finally got a court date in June and we spent 3 full days, including a lot of time doing things with the children alone. Then the court date arrived, and the judge was screaming at everyone, told us we were not qualified to be parents, that everyone screwed up in this process. She said she would give us 2 months to submit “physical evidence” of our parenting ability. We have no children so we have no evidence. So we scrambled to get something to submit including more references and a beautiful video and story with photos telling of our experience of bonding with the children. In the meantime, as I was being pushed by the US agency to get everything submitted and “fight” for the children, I got really angry at the Director because I felt bullied and blamed by her and she did not want to give me space to heal. However, we are on a timeline and if things are not submitted within 5 more weeks, we will definitely get denied. We sent everything to the US agency one week ago. The US agency now says I am mentally unstable and they will not submit anything else on our behalf. I am depressed, sad, lost, confused, angry…every emotion has come up with the process. I felt like the judge kidnapped or killed my children. I have been in mourning since the court hearing because the judge basically said no to us and attacked us in court. The US agency seems to think these kids might be better with another family or, I guess, living in the orphanage forever. They are 7 and 10 years old so finding a new family will take years and we are the 4th family they have lost. Now they will be looking for family #5. These children have thought we are their parents for 8 months and we have everything prepared to bring them home now. I feel like a whacko for so many reasons but most of all due to the judge rejecting us and to the US agency fighting with me when I am at an all time low emotionally right now. The US agency thinks I fell apart too much and that I could not raise children. The Taiwanese orphanage has been very kind and supportive and has continuously told us we are good parents but they can’t do anything without the US agency involved. I really wanted to fire them but then I tried to pul myself together and kiss the Director’s butt for the children’s sake. I apologized to her and blamed myself. She never once apologized to me as she thinks she has done her job and she thinks she has been supportive. I feel everyone except the US Director and Judge were supportive. How do other people handle a failed adoption where the judge rejects you AFTER you have been bonding? Is it normal to go into a numb phase, then an anger phase and then a depression phase and then gravitate between the phases? Does it seem right for the US agency to deny these children a family for this reason?


On what grounds does she say you are mentally unstable? Is she a mental health professional? What a mess. How sad for all

Posted by Regina on Jun 28, 2018 at 1:07am

It is because she felt attacked by me and she is defending her agency. I agree I was at an all time low after the judge rejecting us and I had no fight in me the day after we got home. She was pressuring me to “fight” and that language felt blaming to me since we have spent 14 months doing everything they asked. I felt beaten up and bullied by the US agency. The judge rejected us in court after we had bonded with the children for 8 months and spent three full days with them. These children call is Mama and Baba. They wrote a card saying I Love You. The judge refused to look at our photos and videos with the kids. I was destroyed after the court hearing. Then to get beat up by the US agency further crushed me. The Director kept attacking me in emails and blaming us. The final rejection this morning was catastrophic when the US agency said they would no longer support us. My argument with her and the emails between us is her proof that I am mentally unstable and they said my marriage was bad bc my husband can’t control me. That is so sexist. My husband is quiet and non-aggressive but a wonderful man and the children bonded so well with him - and me. No one can control me. This is who I am. I am successful for many of the reasons I am failing with adoption. My question is: Am I reacting as a mentally unstable women because I am in shock and grieving to loss of my children?

Posted by RedSunRising on Jun 28, 2018 at 3:06am

Based on what you have told us you don’t sound mentally unstable at all. You have been through hell. What an absolute shock and emotional assault it must have been to have the judge say those things to you. Adoption is excruciatingly emotional. Don’t let these people make you question your sanity. Be done with that agency for now. Save your fight for figuring out how to move forward. Once you have determined what to do about adoption, you can circle back and decide if you want to demand your money back or whatever.

Deep breath. Is there any way to move forward with adopted these kids? Is the Tawainese agency able to recommend a different US agency? I don’t know anything about international adoption, but it seems there must be some recourse. Can you find a lawyer and see if an extension can be negotiated with the judge?

If you absolutely cannot adopt these children, then you will need to grieve. It is horrible and unfair to both you and the children. Any emotions you feel are normal. None of it will be a sign that you are unstable. You are a human being who has been through a trauma.

I’m so sorry that you have to deal with this.

Posted by wannabe on Jun 28, 2018 at 7:55am

Thank you Wannabe for the reassurance and validation. I am absolutely done with the US agency. I loved my contact person there but then the Director got involved and her style and my style do not mix, especially when I am depressed, angry and feeling hopeless. Then the Board of Directors of the US agency met and said they will not submit the additional documentation to the judge in Taiwan. I still wanted to move forward and take a chance with submitting more documentation to the judge to see if she might approve us, even though I thought it was a long shot. But that is completely off the table because the Board of Directors thinks I do not know how to handle disappointment because I am taking some time off from work to re-group and get balanced. They think this indicates I might abandon the children if things got too tough with the kids. This is a huge assumption based on absolutely NO information about me. I am a successful career woman and for me to take a break from work is highly unusual. In fact, my family, friends, employees and clients are complimenting me for doing some self care and they say I am a role model to them. The worst part is my wellness break has caused the Board to say they will not even consider moving forward with us until after my break is over and then they will see. Then I got an email from the orphanage yesterday saying that I need to decide what to do. I said this is not in my control now. The judge and my US agency will not move forward and if we miss the deadline because the US agency refuses to submit the additional evidence the judge requested, we will certainly get a firm rejection. So know I feel everyone is blaming me for the adoption failure. I don’t have any control over the judge or the US agency. They gladly took $30,000 from us and approved us but now they will not do their job.

Posted by RedSunRising on Jun 29, 2018 at 6:33pm

HI RedSunRising,

Oh how horrible. I feel for your kids whose hopes are being crushed. And for you for the trauma you are going thru for no good reason.

There are many adoption agency social workers and staff who are power hungry, incompetent, discriminatory as well as those rare judges in countries who hate adoptive parents or who do make one wonder if they traffic in children. I know others as well who have been treated equally unethically. You should be very clear that you do not deserve this treatment.At the very least you will find agencies and county programs that are run professionally, ethically, and efficiently with concern for the children.

However, It would be worth doing all you can before you move on. Can you switch agencies, if there is another one who does adoptions from Taiwan? Get the new director fighting for you? Hire an international lawyer familiar with Taiwan, contact state dept, senator, and govt representatives to put the pressure on your current adoption agency? look for those on line who have experience with that agency, country or judge for advice?

What ever you decide do what you need to keep your sanity and heal. i wish the best for you.

Posted by Happy Camper on Jul 07, 2018 at 2:40am
Posted by Happy Camper on Jul 07, 2018 at 2:41am

It is creepy to find the children we were working on adopting for over a year online again.

Posted by RedSunRising on Sep 13, 2018 at 7:00am

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