Are you adopting boys or girls or one of each?
We don't know yet! We won't know until we receive our official referral in about one or two years.
Andrew and I would not be able to choose a gender if we had bio kids. However with international adoption, many times parents can choose to adopt either a boy or a girl. Even though Bulgaria's adoption program does allow requests for children of a specific gender, we decided not to request a specific gender. We will be matched with whatever sibling group is available and waiting for parents at the time. Andrew and I believe that the children we are matched with will be the children God intended to be in are family and will be right for us!
The old poem says:
Girls are made of Sugar and Spice
and Everything Nice
Boys are Made of Snips and Snails
and Puppy Dog Tails.
We think both sound fun! Although I am secretly hoping for a boy and a girl, I will also be thrilled if we are matched with two boys or two girls. (I also think twins would be really neat!)
Interestingly enough, most people must prefer Sugar and Spice. Adoption agencies, both domestic and international, report that if given a choice, 75-80% of adoptive parents prefer to adopt girls. More girls are adopted internationally every year than boys. Between 1999-2011, over 60% of children adopted internationally into the United States were girls.
Sadly, this preference may lead to many orphans waiting longer for a family or never receiving a family at all. There are more boy orphans waiting to be adopted than girl orphans in every country except China. Even in China, there are many boys waiting to be adopted.
Why the preference for girls? No one is sure exactly why. Perhaps the there is a preference for girls because:
- Many times adoption is driven by the mother, not the father. A hopeful mommy-to-be may be dreaming of a daughter.
- Some people may view girls as vulnerable and needed protection. (My view: All orphans are vulnerable and in need of protection. All children should be raised in a loving family!)
- Girls may be viewed as easier to raise than boys. (Although, the opposite may be true in many cases. I have heard many parents of both boys and girls say that their boys were actually easier to raise.)
- Boys traditionally carry on the family last name. Families may prefer to adopt a girl because they are uncomfortable with an adopted child carrying on the family last name.