LDS and Bethany Christian Services: I want your infant for adoption

Today the National Council for Adoption, launched a campaign to persuade mothers to give up their newborns for adoption. On a newly launched website, the Demons of Adoption, promote the notion of relinquishing with the slogan Sometimes choosing adoption is being a good mother.

With a glossy website, having classy looking young women of all colours and races, with grave looks of sorrow on their faces, the Council pictures adoption as a lifestyle option, as if they are selling iPods.

The website shows a promotional video, which will air in the next few weeks, in which a voice over, suggesting to belong to the young chocolate brown woman, says:

I always thought being a good mother, meant raising my children myself
But when I got pregnant, I realized I wasn't ready to be a parent
So I did something I thought I'd never could do, I chose adoption.
It was really hard, but I know my baby is with a loving family and has a very bright future.

Let's see how bright Nicolai Emelyantsev's future is, adopted by a loving LDS family and forever dead since last week or look at Hei Min Chung and Emma Alvey see how bright their future is, after being placed by the other big contributor of the NCFA, Bethany Christian Services.

From the website it is obvious whose work is promoted here. Go look for yourself and check our the Looking for adoption counseling? page. Search the various states and notice how in each state, where represented, LDS Family Services is listed first, followed by Bethany Christian Services.

It's sad to see that fellow adoptee and country music singer-songwriter, Rodney Atkins, chose to team up with the Demons of Adoption in this campaign, together they may be able to persuade young women to give up their babies Before the Devil Even Knows.


Swapping Stories

I don't know if I should laugh or cry at the propaganda being pushed on the parents trusting adoption services.  In fact, given the number of adopted children diagnosed and parents seeking "treatment" for Reactive Attachment Disorder, perhaps we too should change the language of child placement and associated disorders that go with the deeds.  How does "Relinquished And Depressed" fit as an appropriate name-change.  The initials are the same, so limit the confusion.  Maybe THEN the message sent to family therapists, medical specialists,  and legal representatives will become more clear:  adoption should only be the very last option given to a child, especially if there are responsible adults within his/her family-network capable of assuming legal guardianship.

Meanwhile, what can be done to better educate eager parents-to-be?  Barbara Holtan wrote an article, "Are you ready to adopt?"  She writes about the motives behind an adoption, and how those motives need to be re-checked with alternatives that are not so life-altering for a child.

I want to adopt because.... Reasons versus Barb's advice

I want a playmate for my birthchild./ Hire a neighbor's child.

My religion tells me to reach out to those less fortunate than I /Put a big donation in the collection plate next Sunday.

My infertility is a constant sadness. It hurts terribly. / Infertility is devastating, but you must understand that adopting does not cure it.

We are quite well off and could give so many things to a child. /Write a check to your favorite children's charity.

Our marriage is shaky and a child will bring us back together. / It will never happen.

Since we can't have birth children, I guess there is no difference anyway. /It's a start, but you need to get past that notion of second best.

We might as well adopt. / No.

Neither is better or worse, but adoptive parenting and birthparenting are really the same, aren't they? / They ARE different.

I really want to adopt but my husband is ambivalent. He'll come around once the child is ours. / What if he doesn't?

I feel so empty inside. A child will fill up that emptiness. /Find a friend.

I just want to cry when I think about all those poor homeless children. I think I'll take one in. / No child needs pity. / Donate to the missions.

There's absolutely no child that I couldn't love./ Ouch! I could show you a few.

 I am a teacher (or mental health professional or social worker or doctor) and I am a "pro" at dealing with children. / Being a child professional is a lot different than being someone's parent.

All these children really need is a lot of love. / I used to think that, too. Now I know better.

I/We just really like kids and want to add one (or more) to our family. I want to be someone's parent. I know I have a lot to learn but I want to begin. / Yes! Go for it, you're on the right road.

Barbara Holtan is Adoption Director at Tressler Lutheran Services in York, Pennsylvania. She and her husband are the parents of three children by adoption and two by birth.

As long as agencies are being asked to serve wanting and needing individuals, there will be new means and techniques to keep their business going.   Sadly, when it comes to babies in this industry, "All's fair in love and war."

Seriously!! Sometimes I

Seriously!! Sometimes I laugh that people really buy into this? that they can believe it? Its jaw dropping that people can buy into the artificial sales pitch agencies use on an alarming basis.

Good post :)

And she bore him a son and he (Moses) called his name Gershom "for," he said "I have been a stranger in a foreign land." ~ exodus 2:22

The Fairy Tale

It is indeed unbelievable how this huge BUSINESS is always presented as a fairy tale.

And people love fairy tales. They even believe them.

the odds are in their favor

It's like the best-kept secret in history, isn't it?  Unless there becomes a group of unified victims mauled and mamed by the adoption industry, willing to tell the other-side of agency practices and adoption placements, the baby-business will run as usual.  Maybe it's too late for us adult adoptees, but as an adult who knows how corrupt and one-sided adoption is for so many, is it fair to let more children and parents get hurt by those seeking their own bottom-line?

It's insane these private practices are getting away with what they do.  If we don't try to do anything to stop it, we too will be  blamed by the next generation asking, "WTF?  Didn't anyone know about this????"

Adoptees are the only group of people that transcends race, gender, ethnicity, religion, political preference and sexual orientation.  Let that be our force against the international industry that fails to recognize it's flaws.

Please tell me, what needs to be done to unify adoptees and all the parents hurt by the dark-side of adoption???

Re: Adoption advice

Okay, so what if someone does really like kids and wants to start a family? What if that someone is in a strong, committed relationship with a stable home environment and can afford the time and money raising a child takes? Why shouldn't they be able to adopt?
I don't understand this anti-adoption sentiment. I'm not adopted, so perhaps I can't, but I am the person I just described. I desperately want to adopt a baby and know I could give him or her a great home. I don't believe any birth mother (or father) should be coerced or manipulated, but what about those who aren't? Why do all adoptions have to be "evil"?

Are all adoptions evil?

I personally don't think all adoptions are evil; I simply believe many working within the adoption industry are far too corrupt for any one's good.  Because of this corruption in business, there are MANY children being placed in very dangerous situations, simply because there are many who see the value in adoption.  Because of this corruption in business, there are MANY parents being hurt by the selfish wants and needs of others.  Because of this corruption in business the practice of safe child placement is not always honored by the adoption industry, and I personally believe that IS wrong and dare I suggest "evil".

I would much rather see more people advocate the need for safe child placement (whether that "place" be an orphanage, a Children's Home or foster-care program) than advocate adoption as the only option a child has once removed from an abusive/negligent home. 

As one who was adopted after living "in-care" for most of my first year of life, it seems to me too many opportunities for abuse and neglect exist when adoption is the only option given to a parent and child.   [For instance, have orphanages now become a breeding-ground for abuse and neglect simply because it's cheaper to sell a child to a willing PAP or are orphanages motivated to provide the daily care each child needs, regardless of "final placement"?]  

All I know is this:  the more I read and research the behind-the-scene practices within child placement services around the world, the more "personal motivation" alarms me, and I would hope others are sensing alarm, (and cause for concern), as well.

not all evil...

Out of 7 adoptions, 4 are not evil.  I know exactly how you feel.  In this forum we present what COULD happen.  I get physically ill reading the stories of what COULD happen and did.  It just doesn't stop.  I keep waiting for there to be no more stories of the evil, but they just keep cropping up as proof that something is WRONG in the adoption industry.
Be very careful if you are pursuing an adoption.  There ARE children out there who are legally adoptable and DO need a home.  But what we are saying here is this:  Be very educated and ask a lot of questions.  Be willing to let that child have contact and knowledge of who he/she really is and where they come from.  Document the whole process before it's too late and all the important information is lost or destroyed.  Have knowledge of bonding; Reactive Attachment Disorder; possible medical problems down the road; and have your eyes wide open when you sign those papers.
I thought love would conquer all.  It has certainly helped; but the damage that is already done to a child is sometimes not seen until years down the road.  The heartache for the child as well as the AP's is something you just cannot prepare yourself for when you suddenly face reality that your child was once someone else' child and carries the loss of that first family deep inside their souls. 
Be honest in every part of the adoption; and where there is dishonesty in any form, there is an abundance of heartache waiting for you in years to come.  When all you can see is a babies face and not the grown child that is to be, you are going at this blindsided and the guarantee that you will face some hard times in the future. 
Three of my seven adopted children have totally betrayed me...  they themselves were totally betrayed by their first family and then it just trickled down.  My daughter was sexually used by her adoptive father and she in turn abused her siblings.  My older son that I TPRed five years ago was sexually abused in his birth country and in turn it trickled down to his siblings.  My 14 year old son came home with many problems and in turn it trickled down to his siblings.  GET THE FACTS!  See if there is anything that might result from those facts that would conflict with another adoption down the road.  Think of all the worse case scenarios before you do anything.  How would/could you handle it if the child is not all you had hoped for (they never are; no child is) and he/she destroys your whole idea of family?  These children have a past.  Just adopting them, changing their name and loving them does not change anything.  You WILL deal with their past at some point in their lives; are you prepared to share them with their past?  Are you willing to give up your dream, to reality?
Your post sounds like thousands of other good, honest people who have only wanted a family and were willing to take a chance.  I was one of those thousands who blindly loved another person's child as my own.  But I did not take into consideration their past and how it would influence who they became.  I was lied to all along the process.  Most agencies lie to place children.  First they lie to the biological parents; and then to the prospective adoptive parents; and always to the child, no matter what the age.  There is pain and heartache; there is loss of identy and family; there is more to this than getting a baby so you can live happily ever after.
Teddy wishes she had known...

What did I ever do to deserve this... Teddy

Out of 7 adoptions, 4 are not evil.

Teddy wishes she had known...

Despite your lingering insanity, I swear you have moments of brilliance.  That was a very good post.


Reasons versus Barb's advice

Reasons versus Barb's advice...

Barb Holtran was the newly appointed director of Tressler Lutheran Services (TLS) when we adopted our daughter in 1998.  Her predecessor, Dr. Barb Tremettiere, was the TLS director when we adopted our son three years before.  In many ways they were cut from the very same cloth.

When we began our mandatory 10 week parenting class specifically for adopting older children out of foster care, Dr. T told us that more than 50% us would not complete the course - fewer still would go on to adopt an older child.  Despite specializing in older "hard to place" children, TLS boasted some of the lowest disruption rates in the state.

Dr T wasn't at all bothered by the high PAP drop out rate - she was proud of her agency's low disruption rates.  She had her priorities straight.


drop-out rates

Dr T wasn't at all bothered by the high PAP drop out rate - she was proud of her agency's low disruption rates.  She had her priorities straight.

Personally I wish more adoption agencies had their priorities straight when it came/comes to "safe child placement", but that topic can be left for another discussion.

Out of curiosity, where do these drop-out PAP's go once they are refused by a specific adoption agency?  Do many of them adopt, elsewhere, anyway?  [Sorry, but I can't get men like pedophile-adoptive-parent Matthew Mancuso out of my mind right now....  scary how such people can be approved for adoption, isn't it?]

I ask these questions about the pre-screening process done by adoption agencies because it seems back in the day when I was adopted, (when  adoption was seen as a great alternative to infertility, and unmarried mothers were told adoption was the most loving option they could give their unborn child), all a married couple had to do to prove "good parenting skills" "responsible adult behavior" was show an adoption facilitator a few documents that would prove:

  •  their marriage was a legal one.
  •  their income was a stable one.
  •  their housing was agreeable to the needs of a child.
  •  their friends/co-workers could write a letter of recommendation, if needed. 

Call me cynical, call me an anti-adoptionalist, but I do not believe this type of limited amount of information tells me (or anyone else with a working conscience) anything about a couple's ability to cope and deal with the stress that goes with parenting, especially if that adoption means "siblings" will be included.  Furthermore, I do not believe any of that documented information tells the adoption facilitator if pedophilia or sexual abuse  (sibling, or otherwise) is going to be part of the adopted child's future.

Aren't these issues adoption agencies should address, universally, (since they affect the life of the adoptee), or am I being too critical?

Pound Pup Legacy