Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Thoughts on Adoption

I read an article that really disturbed me.  Have you read the book "Kisses By Kate"?  It is about a young girl who moved to Uganda and started working with  children and their families.  She ended up adopting about a dozen girls.  Kate is only about 25 years old.  I loved the book, loved her story and I think posted about it. 

http://www.redletterchristians.org/now-red-carpet-katie-davis/?utm_source=amazima&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=Facebook

I read the above article today, it is an interview with Kate.  What bothered me so much was her thoughts on adoption.  It's funny as adoption has caught on more and more in the adoption community there are many "camps".  Some are for international adoption, some are for foster care adoption, some only know the American adoption of a perfect white baby....some believe they should adopt from moms who were going to abort the baby....etc and etc.....

ME?  I'm for any and every kind of adoption.....doesn't matter to me!  BUT I have to say this having been overseas and seen orphanages and mental instiutions....it made me VERY thankful for the American foster care system, flawed as it may be, it usually beats the heck out of an orphanage!  But what really beats it all is a FAMILY!

So this article seems to be advocating more for families to move to a child's country in order NOT to take the child from its' heritage IF they were going to adopt an international child.....ok I have no problem with this.  I LOVED Ukraine and would have been blessed to have moved there.  Not so much to keep Sarah and Selah's roots there, but to reach out to the country.  I have friends who do foster care for children in another country, they moved their to take care of special needs kids...

The thing I have a BIG problem with is making anything legalistic!  Let me tell you, neither China nor Ukraine cared much about my children.  All three had been mistreated,.....  Obviously my girls don't understand that they now live in another country but they do understand they have a family, they are fed, they are clean, they are content.  While Shad has a greater understanding, to him China is interesting and he'd like to go back and see it one day but it seems like he is interested in it like I am in my hometown....it doesn't define who I am today as China does not define Shad.  Is it worth it to the child to keep them somewhere that is not meeting their needs ONLY to give them a glismpe of their culture?  I don't think any of my kids saw much of their culture except for the four walls of the institutions. 

As a Christian I do not think of myself very strongly as an American....I LOVE the USA but one day my nationality will not matter in the least.  In heaven we all will stand before God, every tongue and every tribe of people and He will be our ruler and our king, not some earthly king with earthly boundaries......

In the American adoption system many whites have been denied being allowed to adopt black children that they loved and often had fostered because "they couldn't give the child the same culture"  So even tho they could give the child a family and let the child define who he was, they were denied that. 

I do not want to see a silly movement start in the adoption community like that!  I posted this article on my FB wall and my friends went nuts on it.  One who is an adoptive mom and is in the process of adopting RIGHT now said " I also want to know realistically how we could earn a living in the foreign countries our discarded children are from as we do not speak the language and my law degree is not recognized there... PLUS the medical resources here in the US are CRITICAL for so many of our sn adopted children...finally my soon to be adopted 11yo daughter has not had ONE SINGLE VISITOR (biological relative or otherwise) in her entire 11 years in an orphanage (relinquished at birth)....WHY should I keep her near a "family"/culture which found her disposable and where she would more than likely end up as a trafficked teen (since she is a lovely girl)????? Like you, I strongly disagree with Katie on this...she is making blanket statements that do not apply in other parts of the world/orphan situations..."


That is the problem, making blanket statements in the adoption world is hard.  It would have been great if my three children would have been loved and taken care of by their family BUT their families discarded them! 

Some adoptive parents have very positive feelings toward the birth families...I do NOT!  In fact I am very angry at them for the various things my kids had to endure before we found them.  In writing this, I realize that it is possible that my children's birth families may read my blog.  I have no idea but I have anger towards them for the things that happened to the children.  I realize they could have had things against them but you know what,?  It doesn't fly with me!  When Sam was born, our whole life changed but I stayed by his side and could have never given him away.  With Sarah her "mother" would not even touch her....that makes me mad!  So don't get a rosy picture in your mind that her family did the unselfish thing and put her in an orphanage so she would be taken care of.....nothing rosy there!  Shad, smiling Shad was left on the side of the road because somehow after birth his eye got damaged.  So the parents let a child get hurt (and believe me I know things happen that you can't control or didn't plan for BUT.....) and then was put  out like trash....  That would have been like abandoning Selah after the accident.....

Would I ever want to meet my kids birth families?  I would, I can't help but be curious about them.  But I would tell them how I felt about what happened.  I believe in redemption but I would want them to understand what their children endured.   Could I forgive them on the behalf of my children?  yes I'm sure I could but right now it is hard for me. 

I'm all for other nationals whether it is in the US or any other country adopting their nations children.  That's great!  But if a child is forced to live in an orphanage or mental institution.....let any family come and get that child!  Race and culture do not matter to me that much.

Education may work in the loooooooong run but right now we have an orphan crises on our hands.  Educate nations to love their children, to protect their children, to take care of special needs kids....but right now find families.....for the ones who are alone, no one to care for them..... I bet the great majority of children would much rather have a loving family than worry about their culture.  Don't get me wrong, I'm very interested in China and Ukraine.  I'm actually reading a history book about WWII and it really goes in to detail about Ukraine and China's roles in the battles and in that gives a lot of history of the countries as it pertains to the 20th century.  We buy videos about both countries to have for the kids and for us to know and understand about their countries.  I know that is not the same as being in the country but we do honor and pay special attention to the kids' countries....

In the interview Kate begins with saying International adoption is good in some situations but then she goes to say "I think education is the key here. I don’t think any well meaning, God-seeking family would ever intentionally take a child from his or her biological family if it were not necessary, but unfortunately we do not always have all the facts, especially in the case of international adoption. I would encourage people to ask lots of questions and educate themselves before pursuing adoption of any kind. Jesus is pleased when we love others well, in the compassionate and sacrificial way that He loved us. This can happen in the form of adoption, but in can also happen in many other ways, including that of keeping families together even when it is difficult. "

She is dealing with children where poverty may be the only reason keeping them from their families....that is SO NOT the situation in many many cases.  That paragraph made me mad...we did have ALL the facts that pertained to our children's situation and it was SAD!  I know many many who have adopted and they had all the facts too....basically their children were discarded by their "birth" families.  I realize there maybe people out there who are "baby trafficking" but guess what?  They don't usually have blind babies to traffic, or delayed children.  My girls reports were detailed...also what was detailed was neither of them had any visitors for all the years they lived in orphanages/mental institutions.....  NOT ONE!    There are a very few children who do have a visitor, maybe a parent, maybe a grandmother.....but not my girls.   The paperwork was very telling....it stated NO Ukrainians visited child...it specified that no one from Ukraine visited my girls ever....combined total of almost 10 years.....so no I don't think they were cared for or about.....



So I don't think Kate is a bad person, I still respect her and what she does  I believe in supporting her ministry and would encourage anyone reading to do so!  She is young and sometimes it's easy to want to imagine a perfect world....      I believe in helping to keep families together and doing what I can for children who aren't adopted.  We sponsor a little girl in Ukraine.   There will always be orphans who need families....even if half of the orphans in the world could return to their families...there would still be millions....estimates are as high as 210 MILLION orphans.....even if it got down to just one million....there would still be more orphans than families stepping up.....

I just hate to see yet another splinter in the adoption/orphan care world!  Why can't we all do all we can in the areas God has put us and still encourage others in their areas????

So let me make the record straight here, I believe in every kind of legal adoption!  thank God for the ones who adopt kids from foster care in their home countries, thank God for those who adopt perfect little white babies, thank God for those who adopt international older kids, thank God for those who adopt "normal non handicapped kids both foreign and abroad", thank God for those who adopt children who would have otherwise been aborted, thank God for those who adopt special needs kids.....thank God for programs that help families stay together....it's all GOOD!!  Don't attack or minimize or belittle/look down upon any of it!  And whatever you do, do not put stumbling blocks in front of others.  Don't start taking on "worldly" ideas that certain children are better with people just like them.....to me that is horrible! 

If a family's situation can be solved by education and help then that is great...but the parents have to WANT to be educated and be helped if they can not hold the family together for whatever reason.   In my part of the adoption world, I do not see many families who care.

And I will put a disclaimer here....the writer/interviewer could have skewed answers and not included the whole conversation.....but again my thing is to embrace each other and what the other is doing, not to put up any walls! 

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Ok finished my rant.....still love Kate.....Go read her book, you will too!

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Went and got all FOUR of Sarah's meds, one was one that is not common so it had to be hunted down, so I had to drive to another town to get it but the pharmacy was across the street from a wonderful thrift store that was having a 50% off sale.....that was fun:)  got the girls a few things (oh is that shocking ? LOL)

Well we have had a big thing happen in our family.  Steve has decided that he needs to focus more on God and himself than to get a new game system.  You may not believe it but I just left him alone about it.  The game system is paid for and on its way....and he decides this!  I almost fell out when he told me.  He is such a kidder, that I thought he was just messing around when he told me he was either going to send it back or sell it!!!   If you remember a few weeks ago I posted about my negative feelings towards video games but how we'd allowed it.  I didn't tell him about my post- he doesn't read his mom's blogs LOL.  I never said a word to him about it nor did I really pray about it.  I felt rather like it was a done deal and would just hook him into video gaming even more....then he comes back form a run and tells me this!!!  Miracles do still happen LOL!

Sam took a nap today, for the last few weeks he has been too uptight to nap and I think that contributed to his anxiety...maybe the new meds are working for him!

Selah only has one full day left of HBOT, please pray that God will touch her through it!

 







8 comments:

  1. I am in Canada, and we have a similar situation. As a basic Caucasian Canadian woman, I would likely not be allowed to adopt an aboriginal child, as it would 'take them from their culture'. Never mind that their culture might at this time be the streets of my city from a cocaine addicted young mother who can't even take care of herself and got pregnant as a result of prostitution. Many aboriginal kids in the foster care system are never eligible for adoption because of this and other rules. As a result, they end up going through numerous foster homes and group homes, often getting involved in the exact same things that their parents were that led to them being taken into care of Child and Family services. Thus the cycle repeats. My dad worked in the inner city for thirty years where poverty, particularly amongst our aboriginal population, is rampant. He knew many women in their late twenties and early thirties who were grandmothers...I have a genetic condition that may well prevent me from having biological children, so adoption is very near the front of my mind. The problem is some agencies or countries will refuse me for some of the very reasons that I am unable to have biological children, such as a mild heart condition! Or may drag up teenage depression from my past. Well, if we go there, we have just eliminated twenty-thirty percent of all people as potential adoptive parents...rant over on that front.

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  2. I totally agree with you. The only culture my 2 ukrainian sons & my chinese daughter ever got was orphanage culture. They never left the orphanage. 2 of them were so malnurished they were missing patches of hair & have scarred rear ends from sitting in the same diaper all day long. The didn't even know their native language, they were hardly ever spoken too. Praying for your girl!cara

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  3. I read the same article and felt the same way!
    My daughter/son in law are foster parents here in the US. They are in the process of adopting two little ones who were abandoned by their mother. She has repeatedly chosen drugs over her children. When mom was pregnant with the youngest he was found to have a physical disability. Her family advised her to abort him because no one would want him. My daughter begged her not to and said they would take him. She now has him and he faces many challenges but he is such a delight to our family. We love them both as our own.
    I do know a few people who have adopted internationally, but as in your case, those children were in institutions and no one wanted them. I am willing to give Kate the benefit of the doubt being young and idealistic. And possibly the interviewer did skew the questions and answers a bit.
    But I agree we as a "church' must band together and not fracture itself over differences of opinion. We are called to minister to the widows and orphans. We need the direction of the Holy Spirit in how we do this. There is certainly not one cookie cutter answer. We need to encourage each other not decide in a blanket statement how it "should" be done.
    You and I are both A/G pastors wives. But we are very different people.I love reading your blog and your approach to life! Doesn't make either of us wrong! In fact I think we'd be good friends!
    We all have different God given personalities and gifts. The Holy Spirit doesn't change who we are, He just enhances us! (And sometimes puts His hand over our mouths! ) ;-)
    I love reading about your family and they are our prayers! Blessings to you!!

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    1. Hi, feel free to email me if you'd like theclanton5@aol.com my A/G friend:)

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  4. Oh my...it really resonated with me to hear you say you are a Christian first over being a USA citizen. It is certainly not a popular viewpoint in many of the circles I find myself in, but I too am a Christian first, followed (not too closely) by being an American. I can't sing the song "God Bless America" when it is played at ballgames because America is certainly not blessing God. I don't think America fits in to prophecy very well, with the exception of perhaps a passage I heard referenced once in 25% of the earth being destroyed in the very last gasping days. But regardless, I do greatly appreciate our freedoms and it is disturbing to see them taken so freely for granted. It won't be long before they are taken so freely...away!

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  5. Exactly...and a big pet peeve is people judging adoptive parents for not adopting from their OWN country when there is such a need...when those same judgmental people would NEVER consider adopting a child or even fostering a child. Every child deserves a home and loving parents PERIOD, and I don't care of the parent(s) is white, black, single, gay, or whatever...the child deserves a home not an institution

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  6. My Niece is adopted from china. We know her story. she was lucky and 18 months old when she got to come home. She also was born with a hole in her heart that made her special needs adoption. God has been so good to her and her adoptive family, They had been on the waiting list forever. We got to talking and I asked have you considered special needs. Both her mommy and daddy at different times told me yes but they had not mentioned it to each other. Well one night they did then they prayed about it , switched to special needs and within the month they had a placement for their daughter who is now 5 almost 6. She is ours no matter she is adopted.

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