How has adoption changed your life?
What is a lesson from your adoption experience that could be life-changing for all families?
1. To understand that adoption is traumatic for the adoptee and that parenting should be 'trauma informed'.
2. That adoption is not an event, but a defining aspect of the adoptee's identity.
3. That race is an essential psychological and social factor in the development and education of a transracially adopted child.
4. That all decisions made in the adoption process are open for review and criticism later in life, not only by the adopter, but more importantly by the adopted child/adoptee.
5. That adoption is still seen as a viable solution in a crisis situation, without seriously considering other options, like stewardship, kinship care and kinship adoption, single mother support etc. Adoption is too often a definitive solution for a temporary problem.
6. That a child is not your child alone, but also and sometimes even more the child of her or his first family.
7. That international adoption can be very seldom pulled off ethically
What changes would you like to see made in adoption?
Abandon adoption as a private enterprise (commercial or not-for-profit) and subject it to a broad and well funded family and child welfare system. Adoption should be an intervention of the last resort.
Stop international adoption and support local initiatives for extended family care and family reunion as practiced in inititives in Uganda, Vietnam, Haiti.
Give preference to same race adoption.
End the myth that adoption is about saving children.