International Adoption

Topics: Adoption, Foster care, Foster care adoption Pages: 5 (1770 words) Published: December 30, 2013
International Adoption

The necessity of adoption in the world is astounding. Currently, there is an estimated 143 million orphans worldwide (Wingert, vol.151). As of 2007, there were 513,000 children living in foster care within the United States alone (Rousseau 21:14).International adoption in the United States was jumpstarted post World War II as a way of helping those children who were left homeless, after war had taken their parents. Although there are thousands of healthy children awaiting adoption in the United States, several American couples still turn to foreign adoption when seeking potential children. Americans often fail to realize the need for intervention within their own country and their duty to take care of domestic affairs before venturing to other countries to attempt to rescue foreigners in need. International adoption in the United States must be abolished, since it is detrimental to prospective parents and their potential children.  Injustices surrounding international adoption often results in a harmful impact on the children involved. Hollingsworth examines the harmful implications that are associated with international adoption:  The adoption of children from other countries by U.S. families presents the risk that these  children will be deprived of an opportunity to know and have access to their birth families-  an infringement on the basic rights of these children compared with more advantaged  children in their country of origin or in the United States. (48:209)  International adoption can result in a lost connection to a child’s culture. This loss of culture confuses the child who is now forced to grow up in an American society that is so different than what they are used to. Children, who can be domestically adopted or if possible go through kinship adoption, are more likely to keep the tie to their ethnicity and traditions (Hollingsworth 48:209). Children who are pulled out of their normal environment and inserted into different surroundings face an identity crisis due to the importance of identity in determining who one truly is. In a study, Trolly, Wallin, and Hansen discovered that fewer than fifty percent of the parents of foreign children felt that their children were only somewhat aware of their birth culture (Hollingsworth 48:209). These children lack a sense of who they really are and later in life will become confused on why they differ from their new families. Though it is often a painful topic that parents choose not to bring up, it is important that children understand their background because it results in a better quality of life. However, the prevalence of “cultural socializations” was low amongst Caucasian families who adopted Asian children (Deater-Deckard, Johnston, Petrill, Saltsman, and Swim 56:390). It is made clear that Westerners lack the cultural knowledge necessary to properly educate their internationally adopted children about the culture the children come from. This can result in a variety of psychological implications due to the significant effect of identity on the health of people of color (Deater-Deckard, Johnston, Petrill, Saltsman, and Swim 56:390). These implications tend to be internalized rather than externalized. In the same study, Chinese adoptees displayed the possibility of behavior such as hyperactivity, aggression, misconduct, and attention problems (Deater-Deckard, Johnston, Petrill, Saltsman, and Swim 56:390).  Not only are there psychological implications as a result of international adoption, but also the possibility of physical harm. Since 1991, when international adoption first started in Russia, twelve Russian children were killed by their adopted parents (O’Flynn 39). Money has begun to overpower the idea of finding good homes for children. This results in children facing worse lives and more problems in America with their adopted families than what they faced before in their native countries.  Where international adoption is present,...
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