Single Parent Adoption: Why the Discrimination Is Unfair

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Single Parent Adoption: Why the Discrimination is Unfair
As an increasing number of children are living in foster care, on the streets, and waiting at childcare agencies, an increasing number of unmarried adults are choosing to become parents through adoption. Though single parents have the potential to give otherwise parentless children the nurturing they need and fulfill their personal desire to share with a family, they still face many difficulties and discrimination in applying for adoption. (Single Adoptive Parents)

Singles looking to adopt face many obstacles. Thirty years ago single-parent adoption simply wasn't done in many places. Certain states even had laws against it. (Liptak 78) The traditional view of parenting that requires a mother and a father for healthy growth and development of the child may seem unfair to many singles, and is also unfair to some children for whom this ideal may not be possible. Today, adoption agencies handle single applicants in a variety of ways. They may still simply deny the applicant immediately, or they may overlook the application while children are placed with couples, request a more rigorous home study than usual, or end up offering the applicant "special needs" children who may be older, have disabilities, or be interracial. Family and friends may also provide hurdles. They may not understand why a person would want to take on the responsibility of parenting without a partner. (Prowler) By demonstrating to agencies, family, and friends that they have thought their decision through and are stable, and by being confident and persistent, singles looking to adopt can achieve their goals. (Gardner)

The simple fact that there are kids without parents and that there are single people willing to adopt is the first good reason to let down the barriers of discrimination to single parents. With increasing numbers of children in foster care needing adoption services, single parents are stepping in to provide...
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