Thursday, January 30, 2014

Infant Domestic Adoption Woes

Basically, I'm sick of trying to adopt in this way. The adoption system in America is so screwed up and dealing with it just exhausts me. Trying to adopt a baby ethically is a nightmare of emotion. It's been 5 years since we first started the paperwork to apply to adopt and I am just so done with it all.

Whenever I get ready to write my thoughts about this subject, I can always find someone who has written it better:

"The Dark, Sad Side of Domestic Adoption"
"Remaining a Family of Four"

Navigating the minefield of trying to adopt in this way is literally a nightmare... like, it has seeped into my dreams and affects me on a daily basis.

Here's the thing... if we had more money, we'd have another baby by now. Women/girls looking for an interracial couple to adopt a bi-racial baby... yeah, that happens all the time. But they all go to different agencies... some they don't realize are charging adoptive parents $30,000 for this "transaction." So, they never see our profile. Because we refuse to pay that much. (The legal work to finalize an adoption is not that expensive... but adoption agencies are a business.)

I am a very wear-my-heart-on-my-sleeve kinda girl and I am overly empathetic to someone who is having a hard time. And I go out of my way for people... way too often. And I get lied to and taken advantage of sometimes.

So, enter the adoption world... where I'm trying to do a good thing, I'm trying to be an answer to someone's prayer, I'm trying to do what I can to better myself and create a stable/loving/supportive home & family so that I can provide that as an option for a child who may not otherwise have it.

There are so many women/girls who find themselves with an unexpected pregnancy - through rape, with an abusive partner, while they were addicted to alcohol or drugs, just being young and not fully understanding the consequences of their actions, through an affair, from a one-night-stand, while on birth control, while homeless, while jobless, while in jail, without any resources to provide for a child at all, whose family isn't supportive or loving, etc. There are times when these women/girls are in a crisis pregnancy and they are stressing about how they are going to raise a child given the circumstances, whatever they may be. Maybe they missed their opportunity to have an abortion or they morally oppose abortion for themselves.

A lot of times, adoption comes to their minds and they start dreaming of the life their child could have, but not with them and not under the circumstances they're being born into. Maybe they know without a doubt that they are not in a position to parent that child and out of love they want to find a family who wants to. Maybe the idea of the child not having an adequate father is enough to want to find an adoptive couple. Whatever the reason, when a mother is going to have a child... sometimes she knows in her heart that adoption is the right decision. That being a good mother in that situation would be to remove that child from the circumstances they didn't ask to be born into.

Adoption can be such a loving choice, a broken answer for a new life being brought into a fallen world.

But then again, there's that dark side to all of this... And trying to make that connection with the woman/girl who is in that situation and wants that for her child... And avoiding along the way the scammers and the manipulators and the liars... is tough. Finding someone who genuinely wants that for her child is hard enough. But then trying to keep in constant communication with her is hard. Phones disconnected. Moving suddenly. Never responding to emails. Then trying to make sure they have the adequate third-party counseling necessary to actually make an informed decision. What if they refuse the counseling? What if they really, really need it? How do I know she's making the right decision? Because let's be honest... pregnant women are hormonal and they don't always know what they want. How can we feel comfortable about a decision when we don't honestly know what's going through her head? How do I know if she has insecurities about it that she keeps to herself? What if none of her reasons for adoption are good enough once she has the baby? What then? We're just discarded. And there's no safety net. Just rejection.

How much rejection can someone take before their confidence in who they are and what they have to offer falters? Before they question whether they are really doing a good thing or not? Before they give up on the whole concept?

We adopted once before. Looking back, man I was naive and hopeful. But it worked out. How?? How in the world did we get so lucky once?

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