Yesterday I woke to the headline “Putin signs anti-US adoption bill”. Since that time, I have felt a variety of emotions about the issue and have been asked my opinion, as if I am some sort of “expert”. I am no expert. Having been adopted and even adopting a child from the US foster care system do not make me an expert on adoption, especially foreign adoption. I am just one person, with one story.
That said, the things that stand out most in my mind about today’s events are two-fold. First, my heart is breaking for the families who will be most directly effected by Putin’s decision. It has been reported that 46 children who were about to be adopted in the US will now remain in Russia. My heart breaks for those families… the families who fell in love with those children, who mentally prepared for them to come “home”. My heart breaks for those children who had light at the end of the tunnel and who now have nothing but darkness.
The silver lining to this “top news” is the opportunity to have open discussions about adoption within the mainstream media. Watching the comments play out on my local new outlet’s Facebook page made me realize how much misinformation is out there about adoption in the US, particularly adoption from foster care. I would encourage anyone looking into foster care or adoption to check out the common myths on AdoptUSKids.org:
- There are no orphans in the United States.
- You can’t adopt a child from another State.
- Only married couples with a stay-at-home parent can adopt children from foster care.
- You have a to have a lot of money and own a house to adopt from foster care.
- It’s easier and faster to adopt internationally than from U.S. foster care.
- Read all myths
Contact your local state office or adoption agency to get FACTUAL information. Please do not believe what you see on Facebook or what you hear from the “friend of a friend”. The road to adoption through foster care may be bumpy, but it IS worth it. But remember, I am just one person and this is my truth. You have to find your own truth.