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Current Events & Hot Topics Current Events & Hot Topics

Adoption group calls for U.S. laws to stop online child trading

Posted by on Nov. 2, 2013 at 1:34 PM
  • 40 Replies


By Megan Twohey

(Reuters) - A study by a major U.S. adoption research group calls for "targeted laws, policies and practices" to stop adoptive parents from giving their unwanted children to strangers through the Internet.

The report, released by the Donaldson Adoption Institute this week, also says problems exposed by a Reuters investigation in September "should be seen as the tip of an iceberg of unmonitored, unregulated adoption-related activities taking place on the Internet."

Reuters found that desperate parents turn to online groups to offer unwanted adopted children to others. The U.S. government is typically unaware of the arrangements or what becomes of those children.

The practice, called "re-homing," illustrates what can happen when parents are ill-prepared for the needs of their adopted child and don't receive the necessary support, the report says.

Through a survey of 1,500 adoptive parents and adoption professionals in the United States and abroad, researchers from the institute and Tufts University found that international adoption has shifted from mostly infants to a growing number of older children who have disabilities or other kinds of emotional, physical or behavioral problems.

In many cases, parents said they were unaware of those problems at the time of the adoption. Fewer than 25 percent of parents surveyed planned to adopt a child with special needs, but 47 percent wound up doing so, the report says.

Reuters found that many children offered to strangers were adopted from a foreign country and suffer from emotional or behavioral problems that their adoptive parents could not handle. The parents complained they did not receive proper training, could not get help from the U.S. government, and often knew little about the child's history before adopting.

"Probably all the parents who have re-homed a child went into adoption planning to care for the child forever, to do the right thing, but they couldn't do it," said Adam Pertman, executive director of the adoption institute. "When systems are not in place to educate parents, when they're not prepared for problems, this is what happens. We don't have the systems and supports in place for adoptive families."

Titled "A Changing World," the report calls for changes in adoption practices "to prevent the kind of distress that leads desperate parents to seek radical solutions like 're-homing.'"

Among the report's recommendations:

* Adoption agencies should increase the quantity and quality of training for adoptive parents.

* Foreign countries should provide more information about their orphans.

* The international adoption system - from government officials to adoptive families - should maintain better records on adopted children, including updates on what becomes of them once they are in the United States, as required by many countries.

The report comes as U.S. lawmakers consider ways to protect children who are adopted overseas and brought to America.

This week, members of Congress called for a hearing on re-homing that would "identify ways to prevent these dangerous practices." Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Oregon, sought reviews by the Obama administration to identify gaps in training and support for adoptive families, and a "minimum federal standard" to govern custody transfers of unwanted adopted children, among other steps.

At the state level, Florida, Wisconsin and Illinois have held hearings on ways to address the practice. The Illinois attorney general is urging Facebook and Yahoo to police online groups where children may be advertised.

The Donaldson Institute is part of a coalition of adoption and child welfare advocates pushing federal policymakers to establish funding for post-adoption services and address what it says are gaps in state assistance for adoptive families.

by on Nov. 2, 2013 at 1:34 PM
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Replies (1-10):
paganbaby
by Teflon Don on Nov. 2, 2013 at 6:11 PM

These are children, not animals! What is wrong with people?

Ms.KitKat
by Platinum Member on Nov. 2, 2013 at 6:38 PM
1 mom liked this

 People are desparate for children and will do just about anything; countries are desparte to rid themselves of their orphans and will advertise the youngest child and when you get to the country will use strong persuasive tactics to take the sibling group-even if you were only planning on 1 child and prepared for only certain needs.

Add to that that once the chidlren enter the US they are already adopted and so it is very difficult to get into these homes to conduct proper post-placement supervsion and provide support services. 

I could go on but I'll stop now.

momtimesx4
by Gold Member on Nov. 2, 2013 at 9:03 PM

Like basecall, magic the gathering or a chocolate frog card.  Collect and trade.

lga1965
by on Nov. 2, 2013 at 9:08 PM

 This is so depressing.

Ms.KitKat
by Platinum Member on Nov. 2, 2013 at 9:55 PM

 Yes, it is. It is a very real issue and problem. I can imagine your difficulty fully wanting to belive it happens however it is very true and very real. I have known several families who had to re-home. Fortunately they did it properly. The sense of guilt and shame and loss is simply overwhelming-for everyone.

These families do not set out to have this play-out in their lives. This was the last place they ever expected to be. They wait so very long for the adoption process, spend thousands of dollars and hope and pray for their "chosen" child. Many countries withhold the medical information; so families have to do their own exam when they go to first meet their child. It is only when the child comes to the US and a full evaluation is performed do the pre-existing issues come to light. Add to that issues of attachment and loss for the child.  

Quoting lga1965:

 This is so depressing.

 

lga1965
by on Nov. 2, 2013 at 10:16 PM

 Yes, and this subject is very close to me and the family. My daughter and her husband adopted a 14 month old girl from Russia. I probably told you about her. They went to Russia three times to the Orphanage before they were allowed to adopt her,They saw a Doctor, the little girl was examined in Russia and found to be healthy. When they brought her home, she was examined at the University of Minnesota. Three times a social worker came to visit. The adoption agency "Childrens' Home Society" stopped in for a friendly visit. Aside from the fact she was born prematurely and her mother left her at the hospital the same day she gave birth and they have no medical background for her, everything seems to be okay.

AT first after she was brought home to our town she was quiet and resisted being held. She was frightened by so any things because she spent the first 14 months of her life in a crib in a room with 20 other kids in cribs. So everything here was new and scary. But now she is a cuddler and a dancer and plays Nerf basketball. LOL.

So far she is just delightful. She is small but healthy, And she has been checked out by the school system, special ed, and they say she is absolutely normal except for a speech delay. She has great motor skills, great social skills, has bonded with us. It is so wonderful.

So, reading about re-homing these kids breaks my heart. Are we just fortunate or are these adoptive parents of the kids who are being re-homed expecting too much? It is so sad.

Quoting Ms.KitKat:

 Yes, it is. It is a very real issue and problem. I can imagine your difficulty fully wanting to belive it happens however it is very true and very real. I have known several families who had to re-home. Fortunately they did it properly. The sense of guilt and shame and loss is simply overwhelming-for everyone.

These families do not set out to have this play-out in their lives. This was the last place they ever expected to be. They wait so very long for the adoption process, spend thousands of dollars and hope and pray for their "chosen" child. Many countries withhold the medical information; so families have to do their own exam when they go to first meet their child. It is only when the child comes to the US and a full evaluation is performed do the pre-existing issues come to light. Add to that issues of attachment and loss for the child.  

Quoting lga1965:

 This is so depressing.

 

 

onethentwins
by Bronze Member on Nov. 2, 2013 at 10:29 PM
1 mom liked this

 


Quoting Goodwoman614:


Among the report's recommendations:

* Adoption agencies should increase the quantity and quality of training for adoptive parents.

* Foreign countries should provide more information about their orphans.

* The international adoption system - from government officials to adoptive families - should maintain better records on adopted children, including updates on what becomes of them once they are in the United States, as required by many countries.

A no brainer.

Ms.KitKat
by Platinum Member on Nov. 3, 2013 at 12:14 PM

 I am so happy for your family. Most times everything works out very well. Most times the issue comes in when the children are older when they are placed.  Those chidlren tend to have more issues because they have been in care longer with mulitiple caregivers and have more difficulty with bonding and attachment.  My guess is, your dd was very well prepared and I bet she contiunes to educate herself about adoption parenting and the special needs children adopted from abroad encounter. And like all things in life-sometimes we get lucky and we have to count our blessings! 

Some of it could be these other families are expecting too much; or did not expect what the experience would be like. You have seen the attitudes on here alone how so many believe that adoption does not impact the child. Of course it does! But through education and smart parenting a lot of the issues can be overcome. Sadly, some of the chidlren adopted internationally come with very little medical information and the parents are caught unawares when issues do arise. FAS is sometimes hard to detect in a young child for example and only shows itself upon entry into school; like many developmental issues.

Quoting lga1965:

 Yes, and this subject is very close to me and the family. My daughter and her husband adopted a 14 month old girl from Russia. I probably told you about her. They went to Russia three times to the Orphanage before they were allowed to adopt her,They saw a Doctor, the little girl was examined in Russia and found to be healthy. When they brought her home, she was examined at the University of Minnesota. Three times a social worker came to visit. The adoption agency "Childrens' Home Society" stopped in for a friendly visit. Aside from the fact she was born prematurely and her mother left her at the hospital the same day she gave birth and they have no medical background for her, everything seems to be okay.

AT first after she was brought home to our town she was quiet and resisted being held. She was frightened by so any things because she spent the first 14 months of her life in a crib in a room with 20 other kids in cribs. So everything here was new and scary. But now she is a cuddler and a dancer and plays Nerf basketball. LOL.

So far she is just delightful. She is small but healthy, And she has been checked out by the school system, special ed, and they say she is absolutely normal except for a speech delay. She has great motor skills, great social skills, has bonded with us. It is so wonderful.

So, reading about re-homing these kids breaks my heart. Are we just fortunate or are these adoptive parents of the kids who are being re-homed expecting too much? It is so sad.

Quoting Ms.KitKat:

 Yes, it is. It is a very real issue and problem. I can imagine your difficulty fully wanting to belive it happens however it is very true and very real. I have known several families who had to re-home. Fortunately they did it properly. The sense of guilt and shame and loss is simply overwhelming-for everyone.

These families do not set out to have this play-out in their lives. This was the last place they ever expected to be. They wait so very long for the adoption process, spend thousands of dollars and hope and pray for their "chosen" child. Many countries withhold the medical information; so families have to do their own exam when they go to first meet their child. It is only when the child comes to the US and a full evaluation is performed do the pre-existing issues come to light. Add to that issues of attachment and loss for the child.  

Quoting lga1965:

 This is so depressing.

 

 

 

Outspoken.Mime
by Bronze Member on Nov. 3, 2013 at 12:16 PM

Have you been through the adoption prcoess?  Its not easy.  It takes months or years.

Adoptive parents are no less prepared for parenthood than first time parents are.

Why would they be?

Quoting Ms.KitKat:

 People are desparate for children and will do just about anything; countries are desparte to rid themselves of their orphans and will advertise the youngest child and when you get to the country will use strong persuasive tactics to take the sibling group-even if you were only planning on 1 child and prepared for only certain needs.

Add to that that once the chidlren enter the US they are already adopted and so it is very difficult to get into these homes to conduct proper post-placement supervsion and provide support services. 

I could go on but I'll stop now.


Outspoken.Mime
by Bronze Member on Nov. 3, 2013 at 12:18 PM

I would argue that first time parents should also receive the SAME training.

Adoptive parents are not incompetent morons who don't know what to do with a child.

Birthing a child makes you no more wise on how to raise it.

Quoting onethentwins:



Quoting Goodwoman614:



Among the report's recommendations:

* Adoption agencies should increase the quantity and quality of training for adoptive parents.

* Foreign countries should provide more information about their orphans.

* The international adoption system - from government officials to adoptive families - should maintain better records on adopted children, including updates on what becomes of them once they are in the United States, as required by many countries.

A no brainer.


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