Saturday, November 17, 2012

Happy National Adoption Day!

Today on National Adoption Day, 4,500 children in foster care will be adopted. We celebrate with these children that they now having parents, a forever family, and a home.

But my heart saddens as I think of the 130,000 children in the US that are still waiting to be adopted. What obstacles are holding these children back from finding loving parents and a home?

Obstacle 1 - 
Misconception: Children in Foster Care have More Problems than Internationally Adopted Children

It is easy to believe that by adopting a child from over seas that he/she will have no history and will be arriving in your home with a blank slate.  But that isn't the case.  Children world wide become available for adoption for the same reasons children in the US are available: neglect, abuse, abandonment, death of parents, etc. Internationally adopted children have the same problems as children adopted from the US with the added problems of language barriers and culture shock. In addition, internationally adopted children also may have problems from living in an orphanage, like institutionalized behaviors, malnutrition, scabies, intestinal parasites, rickets, etc.

Obstacle 2 - 
Misconception: What Did These Kids Do Wrong to End Up in Foster Care?

This misconception is so sad! Children are not in foster care because of any of there own actions. Children are in foster care because of neglect or abuse by parents.

Obstacle 3 - 
Misconception: Adopted Children Don't Turn Out Well

This is a major misconception that research has proven false.  I have a lengthy blog post about how well children who are adopted adjust. Click here to read the blog post Adoption Myth Busters: Adopted Kids Grow Up To Break Their Parents Heart.

Obstacle 4 - Age

The older children grow, the less likely they will be adopted.  The majority of people want to adopt infants or toddlers.  However, older children can actually fit into a new family and adjust better than toddlers.  Older children understand what is happening and can verbalize their thoughts.  Toddlers only understand that their world has changed and they are living with strangers.  Older children may work very hard to make an adoption work because they know that this is their last chance to have a family.

Waiting to Be Adopted

Hear from some kids who are waiting to be adopted.

What It's Like Being Taken Away

Children adopted from foster care describe what it is like being taken away from their biological family.

The Hope of Being Adopted

Children who were adopted from foster care talk about the hopes they had of being adopted. 

Hear From Parents who Have Adopted from Foster Care

Think you could never adopt from foster care? These parents did not think they could either!

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