Perspectives of Adoption
Many couples today are unable to get pregnant whether that be because of health issues or unknown causes. Adoption is an alternative way to have a family; it is a lifetime decision that should be made very cautiously. Adoption is a process where parents are supplied for children whose biological parents are deceased, or for those children whose biological parents are unable or unwilling to provide for their care. The children are provided for childless couples or individuals interested in becoming parents. According to Dr. Ruth Mc. Roy at the UT School of Social Work, “There are approximately 5,000,000 US births each year. Out of that approximation 118,000 are adoptions.” Adoption can be traced back to the Bible. It is known that the Pharaoh's wife adopted Moses, and Jesus was even adopted by Joseph. We will look at several perspectives of adopted children and how they view adoption. Some children have always known they were adopted. They were adopted at such a young age they just do not know differently because their parents have always been open and honest with them. As I read a blog post about a girl who was adopted at as a baby, I liked what she wrote, “My parents presented it to me, and that I was very special because I was chosen. And my dad used to tell me I was the cutest baby in the nursery and that's why they picked me.” Article Source (Michalski). What an awesome experience to know that out of all the children in the world her parents chose her. Some scenarios aren’t like this though, and some adopted children don’t find out until later in life. I had a friend who found out during high school that she was adopted. She was very shocked and felt like her “parents” had lied to her during her whole childhood. She asked during several occasions, “Why wouldn’t you just have told me when I was young?” Watching her go through this process and knowing other friends who grew up knowing they were adopted were two totally different reactions. The relationship between her and her parents grew apart, she felt very distant to them and did not know how to converse with them anymore. She did not know how to trust them with anything they were telling her or had ever told her. It was very sad watching her go through this especially during high school which is supposed to be very memorable. (Wild) The other scenario you have of a child’s perspective is the child being in a group home or foster home and wanting a “forever home.’ More than 400,000 children in the United States are currently in foster care, many of whom are at risk for long-lasting emotional and health problems. (Buckles) I cannot imagine what a child must go through being bounced around from home to home and not knowing where they will lay their head next. This is why so many children want a forever family. Children feel safe and secure knowing that tomorrow they are not going to have to be moved somewhere else. The stability of having a family must be something so special to an adopted child. There is one last perspective that I would like to discuss and that is of a child that is too young to understand they are being adopted. This scenario has personally happened in our family. My sister adopted a 9 month old from Guatemala 8 years ago. They worked with an adoption agency for 10 months and the day came for Mariah to be their daughter. Until that day, Mariah lived with a foster mom from the day she was born. She had never known anyone else to love or to care for her. Thankfully, Mariah had a fantastic foster mom who to this day they still have contact with. When my sister Amy and her husband Mark went to pick up Mariah, they met the foster mom in a common location. The foster mom handed Mariah over to Amy, and of course Amy fell in love at first sight. Mariah was very scared and unsure of Amy, she was being held by a woman she had never met before. Mariah continued to cry for her foster mom for quite some time. The staff member from the adoption agency suggested that Amy and Mark hug the foster mom goodbye and thank her, then leave with Mariah. The next few days and even weeks were particularly hard as Mariah had to adjust to new faces of people that she would grow to love and call Mom and Dad. Once Amy and Mark were able to come back into the United States, Mariah was able to meet her new brothers and sisters. The transition for Mariah became began to be much easier as she came to know Amy and Mark and now she has many brothers and sisters to play with. Adoption for a child is not always easy, but it is the most rewarding thing a family can do. After doing this research and learning more about a child’s perspective on adoption, I feel that it is best to be completely up front with the child and let them know from day one that they were chosen and that they are loved. Adoption is an adjustment for everyone but something that we do not always think about it how the child is going to feel through the process and how they will respond.
Buckles, Kasey S. "Adoption Subsidies and Placement Outcomes for Children in Foster Care. ." Journal of Human Resources (2013): p596-627. Michalski, Michelle. http://EzineArticles.com/6008195. 27 Febuary 2011. Wild, Susie. http://www.thesite.org/sex-and-relationships/family-life/finding-out-youre-adopted-3308.html. 25 March 2014.