Silence on Case of Stolen Children

(nb. Slight error in article ... the children were aged 3 and 5 when adopted into our family. They were aged 1 and 3 when taken from their first mother)

Rory Callinan/The Australian
November 06, 2009

INDIAN authorities have failed to launch any investigation into how two stolen children were adopted in Australia despite being given documentary evidence last year proving the siblings were trafficked.

Australian couple Julia and Barry Rollings adopted two toddlers, aged 1 and 3, in India in 1998 after being assured they had been relinquished by parents who lived on the streets of Chennai and were allegedly too sick to care for them.

However, in 2006, the couple discovered the children had been taken by their father while they slept on the pavement with their mother in the slums of Chennai.

The pair, a brother and sister, were then sold for $50 and ended up in an orphanage that allowed them to be adopted by the Rollings family in Canberra.

Two years ago, the Rollings took the children, Sabila and Akil, back to India to visit their biological mother who agreed they should remain in Australia.

Late last year the Rollings went back to India to gather evidence of how the children were sold and found official documents proving the signatures of the parents had been forged. They took statements from the biological mother Sonama and other witnesses.

The Rollings then petitioned the High Court of Madras to pass the evidence to India's Central Bureau of Investigation.

They also wrote three letters requesting an investigation by the Indian Central Adoption Resources Agency, which polices the Hague Convention on the protection of children and co-operation with respect to intercountry adoption.

But yesterday Mrs Rollings said no investigation had been launched and no one had contacted them with any information. "It's very frustrating nothing has happened. We have actually brought this information to the authorities," Mrs Rollings said. "We thought the authorities would be as appalled as we were, and would at least contact us to say they would investigate but instead our letters are not even acknowledged."

Mrs Rollings said she had not received any reply from CARA. She heard through other sources that CARA had referred the case to the CBI but no investigation could progress unless a referral came from the courts. Yesterday India's deputy high commissioner to Australia V.K. Sharma blamed a backlog of cases in the courts in Chennai for the delay.

He said Mrs Rollings should send the high commission the details for investigation. "It is the first we have heard of it," he said.

Among evidence uncovered by the Rollings was how the children's father returned briefly to see the mother after he sold the children. "He turned up and he had the equivalent of $50 and told the neighbours and relatives he had sold the children. But (they) were so angry they drove him away and he has not been able to be found," Mrs Rollings said. Sonama searched for the children but eventually gave up, fearing they had been killed.

At one point she was told they may have ended up blinded and forced to beg for money with a gang of professional beggars.

The children, however, turned up at the Madras Social Services Guild orphanage at Nedungundram Vandalur, south of Chennai, from where they were adopted out to the Rollings.

The orphanage has denied any impropriety. The Rollings obtained the relinquishment certificate purportedly signed by Sonama from the local court. The signatures appeared forged and Sonama's age was wrong.

The CBI is already investigating cases involving another orphanage, Malaysian Social Services, near Chennai, which purchased children from a child- stealing gang and then adopted them out across the world including to Australia.

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Stolen children, an abused adoptee's perspective

I not only recall the first time I read the article related to this case, I also recall the feelings inside of me when I responded to the article titled, 'Stolen babies' adoption racket.

As one who was sexually abused by a member of my pre-screened "chosen family", (not to mention physically and emotionally battered by other Afamily members), I have to admit, at first, the idea of being sent back to a first-family sounds like bliss.  How bad could it be?  Could it really be much worse than living in a really dysfunctional (American) family?!?

<breathe, Kerry, BREATHE, damn it!... and for God's sake, stop the bloody crying!!!!>

The truth is, adoption DOES change many things... and the more time passes, the more those "touched by (corrupt) adoption" lose.

I'm glad the adoption community has outraged AP's.  It gives me hope... something I don't allow myself to keep.  Outraged AP's have power neither adoptees nor first parents have.  Believe it or not, outraged AP's have the ability to create change... provided a government is open to their suggested change.

That's the real tragedy behind so many international adoptions, isn't it?  If only government officials gave a rat's tail interest in providing what's best for parents AND children....  Instead, the bottom line is all about saving and making money, and not being caught for wrong-doing.

When will things become different?

When?

As always ... not until enough voices demand change!

Aparents do have power. That is why my husband and I are choosing to exercise that power by requesting (though I feel more like demanding!) that the Indian court orders an investigation of our case.  I would have preferred it to be a joint petition, with Sunama joining me in the action, but she is disempowered and not willing to stand up to the authorities.  Our kids are still teenagers, though they know and agree to all the actions we've taken (whether that is writing my book, agreeing to speak to the media, or taking court action) but as minors they cannot petition the court.  So, it was up to us as the aparents to take this battle on, though our petition states that we are doing so on behalf, and with the agreement of, our beloved children and their first mother.

Samoan children with families are not orphans.

Stolen kids.

Focus on Children Wellsville, Utah. There is something very wrong with our society, criminal justice system, judical system when children who have a family already, and are not orphans, are taken away.

When a bag of rice, or can of fish has the power to lure children away from their families. A white adoption agency owner stalks market places where poor pregnant women gather and solicates for their unborn. Promising them a "better" life in the land of "good and plenty".

We watched this case recently. We watched as the white adoption agency owners walked away, when they should have been held accountable for their dirty trades.

There will be no change until we band together and hold attorney generals, judges, social workers accountable. I heard from a social worker who worked with the Banks in Salt Lake City and she said "they were doing so many adoptions, so fast, I knew there would be trouble so I told me that I could not perform home studies for their clients." Take action, write letters, make phone calls, blog to EXPOSE this. If your a victim of corrupt adoption agency owners REPORT them, tell your story to everyone you know. These two were not even educated, held no professional licenses, yet they ran an adoption agency.

Only in America! Land of 'good and plenty". Founders of adoption.

Power and future battles

Before I dig into deeper adoption issues, let me take the time to thank you for your bravery and willingness to expose a very dark truth behind your own adoption story.  It's my own personal belief far too many AP's want to ignore and dismiss all the bad connotations corruption brings an adoptive family, simply because ignoring and dismissing the truth as it really exists makes day-to-day life much easier.  To help illustrate my point, consider the words from a Canadian AP facing the issue of stolen children from China:    

Wagner admits she is afraid of the false stigma that may be attached to families like hers, once the situation becomes more widely publicized. 
"I don't want to be walking in Walmart with my child and have people point to me and say: 'Do you know that your baby was bought, or stolen?'" 
At that same time she says, "it's important to start speaking out about this issue, because change is desperately needed. 
[From:  China’s adoption system worries Canadian mom ]

It's taken me years to understand "good" AP's do not want to be associated with anything that wreaks of "self-serving".  I hope readers can appreciate what a difficult lesson that has been for me.... because I was adopted by very self-serving people.

I'd like to pay attention to the power first-parents have, and how so-called "legal" adoptions operate.  In the above response, you state:

I would have preferred it to be a joint petition, with Sunama joining me in the action, but she is disempowered and not willing to stand up to the authorities. 

I can imagine your frustration... having both adoptive and birth parent representation in your case shows there is a unified front -- both sides want a full-blown investigation and want necessary action to be taken, so what happened (to all of you) does not happen again.  Her not wanting to be involved can raise the eyebrow that asks, "Is the mother lying about what really happened?".  I must add, however, after reading what's done to first-parents, I can understand why a birth-mother is not eager to join-in any legal action. Although the example I'm using relates to China's stolen children, I hope the general theme can be gleaned and appreciated:

Under Chinese law, officials are required to search for the birth parents of abandoned babies. Four months after Yang Shuiying's daughter was taken, her photograph ran in a notice in the province's Guizhou City Daily along with those of 14 other babies.

The ad claimed, falsely, that the baby was "found abandoned on the doorstep" of a home in Tianxi village.

"Whoever recognizes this child should contact the orphanage in 60 days; otherwise, the baby will be considered an orphan," read the Aug. 14, 2004, announcement.

The parents say they never saw the notices because they lived in remote villages where newspapers were not available. In addition, many of the parents are illiterate and they had been told by family planning officials that the law allowed them to confiscate the babies, so it did not occur to them to complain.  [From:  Some Chinese parents say their babies were stolen for adoption ] 

How can a first-parent contest an adoption if that parent lives in a remote village, has no knowledge of a posted notice that states X amount of time is being given before a missing child is given orphan-status, and cannot afford lawyer/court fees?

Knowing how little respect is given to poverty-stricken people, it's no wonder a birth parent feels impotent against authorities. 

Meanwhile, we have officials saying, "They're better off with their adoptive parents than their birth parents," 

Yes, I imagine if each adoptive parent chosen by an agency was loving, generous and provided great care, each so-called adoptable orphan languishing in-care would be lucky to have been chosen for adoption. 

Unfortunately, not every adoptive home is as great, loving, or safe as officials want to report them as being. 

How many would like to be any one of the chosen adoptees featured in our abuse pages? 

I'm in awe of the good AP who wants to go toe to toe with an adoption agency and a high court.  That's bravery and conviction I so deeply admire and respect... and it shows me the sort of role model you are for your adopted children.  (Kudos for taking serious action!)  I only wish kidnapping for child trade was the worst fact an adoptee or living birth parent had to face. 

Going public

Thank you for your post, Kerry, and sentiments.  It has been a really tough task, at times, to stand up and publicly state that our children were trafficked.

I can understand the reservations felt by the quoted adoptive mother, in not wanting people to approach her in Walmart with comments about her child being bought or stolen. Surprisingly, when we did go public and state just that - that our children HAD been stolen and sold - we did not receive any negative feedback from the general population.  We discussed this possible response with our children before making the decision to go public (rather than just fight our fight in private) and we prepared them, as best we could, for the probability of teasing at school, ignorant or harsh comments in public, etc.  We approached teachers at their school, so our children had a safe person to seek out if teasing became too painful. Our story was not only in my book but also in the national and international media - in newspapers,  magazines, television news programs, national and international radio programs, as well as a 30 minute program on a national television program (http://www.abc.net.au/foreign/content/2009/s2493505.htm). Additionally, my book ends with my personal email and blog details, so I received hundreds of personal messages.  Not a single one was condemning.  Our children did not have any episodes of teasing or bullying at school, or elsewhere.  The comments we received were supportive, warm and understanding.

The only harsh response came from other adoptive parents - not fellow adoptive parents here in Australia, but ones from the US! I was saddened to see that some would "protect" adoption at all costs, and would shoot the messenger rather than target their anger at those who were directly responsible for adoption corruption. 

Some random thoughts... here in the USA

If I read your comment correctly, it reads as if your adopted children never experienced harsh/painful teasing in school.   Maybe your own interventions prevented that from happening, maybe international adoptees aren't mocked like they used to, or maybe my experience was very odd in more ways I care to count.  When I was a kid in school, the teasing was vicious and cruel, and I didn't dare say anything to my Aparents or teachers, because I knew all they would tell me is to be strong and ignore those who were teasing me.  In my mind, being teased for being me -- being "different" -- was nothing new... it was to be expected.  After all, if members of "my" family said mean things to me about my being adopted from Canada, why should kids at school be any different?  Specific comments made at school that stand-out to this day:  "Did you know you're a bastard?", "You're so ugly even your mother didn't want you". "What's it like knowing you were given away?" "You're not an American, so go back where you came from."

Perhaps most bothersome was the single question:  "Do you know who your parents are?"  The odd thing about that question is, everyone seemed to know my parents were living somewhere... only no one knew where.

I'll never forget in the fourth grade, after a huge fist-fight I had with this mean tough girl who didn't like me, I walked home thinking the biggest lie in the world is:  "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me."  Words hurt.  They always did.

Maybe times are very different, but as I recall my own school-daze experience, being adopted (from outside of the USA, no less) did not make my social life any easier.  What made my not-fitting in worse was this adult belief surrounding me, telling me I should not only not complain, but I should show others how grateful I was for being chosen, through adoption.  I mention this because of the following little comment:

The only harsh response came from other adoptive parents - not fellow adoptive parents here in Australia, but ones from the US! I was saddened to see that some would "protect" adoption at all costs, and would shoot the messenger rather than target their anger at those who were directly responsible for adoption corruption.

Receiving harsh comments from American AP's is nothing new to me. When I first joined the adoption forum circuit over 10 years ago, harsh comments made by American AP's helped cement my belief that ALL AP's are narrow-minded self-stroking assholes.  It seemed no one wanted to be told what they thought they knew about adoption and adoptive families is not all there is to know about the entire adoption process and subsequent experience.  Back then, if I felt attacked by an AP, I would see that as an invitation to unleash...sink my teeth in... and let loose.  Now that I'm well removed from those little groups, and given the sort of feed back that encourages healing, if I feel like I'm being attacked, I consider the source, and let the comments go... understanding there are those who want to pick fights, not engage in deeper, more thoughtful/meaningful discussion.  Harsh attacks from an American AP does bring a curious question, though.   Is American attack-mode a sign of pride, ego and arrogance, or does it simply reflect a refusal to believe Americans can be fooled?  I don't know.  I do know American AP's, who refuse to support and encourage legal recourse against adoption agencies (and their paid affiliates), are only contributing to corruption found within the adoption industry.

To help illustrate how far one-sided interest goes, consider one American's response to the article, Burned by a baby broker.  It's amazing how certain business-minded people want to keep international adoption active and alive, regardless of complaints made by a horrified AP... isn't it?  I suppose the thought, after reading the lawyer's plea, is supposed to be, stolen children are sold to dumb people, not smart Americans using smart American agencies.  

When one considers the number of foreign so-called orphaned children being sent to paying American parents, is it any wonder any messenger with disturbing news will be attacked and silenced?  God forbid American AP's, choosing international adoption, are seen as being selfish AND stupid! 

Teasing

I meant they hadn't received any teasing or bullying in relation to our decision to go public with their story of being trafficked - though we expected there would probably be some negative responses.

My five adopted sons and daughter have all been teased in school, though racist bullying has been infrequent and none has been teased about being adopted. The most recent episode of racist bullying occurred to my 14 year old daughter early this year, when a boy in her year wrote "Sabi is a n***er" on a wall at her school. She found out about it when she and her friends spotted the graffiti.  Several of her friends confronted the boy who wrote it, and were so angry that it lead to a fight. When my daughter came home and told me about it, she was less concerned about the graffiti than she was about her friends getting into trouble for fighting. She said her friends were much angrier than she was.

I've just checked in with my 16 year old son. He told me that his last incident of teasing was in his previous school, so three years ago. He complained to a teacher at that time, and the student was given an official warning. That was the only time he's been bullied since starting school.

On the matter of harsh comments - I don't shy away from criticism or take it particularly to heart. Years of regular posting on alt.adoption toughened my hide.  It was just curious to me that the only criticism I've received came from US adoptive parents. It seems that adoption is still a sacred cow in the US.

Toughening v. Softening

 Years of regular posting on alt.adoption toughened my hide.

It's funny how years of certain experiences can change a person.

It's taken me many many years to soften my very indifferent, "I don't care... whatever", hard-ass hide.  It's taken me many many years to allow myself the opportunity to open-up and explain to others why I seem so angry, cold, critical.... or distant.   It's taken me many many years to trust and believe there are people who not only feel another person's pain, but want to do something to help and make things better... more pleasant.  It's not easy sharing personal things with people.... especially if that sharing means you will be criticized and punished... or worse, ignored and dismissed. 

I'm 41 years old, and have been through a lot.  Physically, medically, emotionally... I've been through a lot of extreme situations and found myself alone during my most painful periods.  It's horrible being alone, with no one there to hold me close, telling me things were going to be alright.   It's a horrible way to go through life... alone, feeling as if no one cares about the man-made cancer growing inside.

I've grown tired of always having to prove I can do things... and I can be tough.  I've grown tired of people telling me I come-off as being "hard", and I should change the way I present myself to people.  [See:  Just Be Yourself ]  It took me decades to admit, I was wrong to keep silent for so friggen long.  I'm now at the stage where I can easily admit I'm not nearly as tough (or capable) as I have let people think, and as a result, my own toughness has hurt me, tremendously.

Moving away from a tough-demanding crowd has allowed me to bleed out some of my kept pain, so real inner healing and closure could begin. When I share my softer, more vulnerable side -- I feel more likable... more human. The irony is, most tough-hide people are really soft mushy marshmallows inside.... so I tend to gravitate toward hard-asses, knowing most times, there is an authentic sweetness and strong sense of child-like fear hiding behind the facade of stoic toughness.   I love seeing that warmth and vulnerability in seemingly cold people... it, oddly enough, restores my faith in the human spirit.  Problem is, I can only tolerate very small doses of warm, soft, sweetness from other people.  I can't experience it too often, or for too long periods of time, because too much sweetness begins to feel fake, and artificial goodness and kindness makes me sick, suspicious, and (silently) resentful.

through my lens

For several year, I was the lowest in the pecking order in my school. Ironically I was not bullied because anyone knew I was adopted. No one did. I was bullied for being different in a rather intangible way. I wasn't different because of the colour of my skin, or the colour of my hair either. Yet I was different because I felt different.

Kids in groups bully, that's in their nature, and differentness is usually the target of all bullying. Those children that can stand up to being picked on, do better than those that don't or can't defend themselves. In my case, I felt completely defenseless. By parental decree, I was not allowed to talk about being adopted, presumably to prevent me from being bullied about being adopted. Yet I felt my differentness was related to being adopted. So in the end, my secrecy about my adoption made me the weirdo that needed bullying, to get out of me that what made me different.

Telling my parents about this would have meant admitting to the wrongness of their command, something I couldn't do. Fear of confronting my parent's authority always withheld me to speak up. This went to extremes that I was sent to bed two hours earlier than class mates, for the reason that I didn't dare inform them other kids were allowed to stay up much later than I was. I treated my parents candy from my pocket money, while withholding it from myself, for the reason I was once told not to buy candy from the money I got.

There are many more silly examples where I didn't dare confront my parent's authority. In retrospect, my adoptive parents, while horrible in many ways, were not even that punitive, nor overly authoritarian, yet they didn't notice my extreme sensitivity to their authority.

I think it was my way of dealing with the fear to be done away again and the way I did was very covert. My adoptive parents knew little of what happened to me, knew little about the feelings I really had, all to prevent them from knowing I wasn't like they wanted me to be. The fear I had, needed little reinforcement. In that sense, my adoptive parents were not much worse than any average couple, but their oblivity to the specific needs I had, blew things totally out of proportion.

I really think many adoptive parents have no clue what they are getting into and often don't have the make-up to do really well. My adoptive parents were just average nut-jobs, nothing really sinister about them. Just your average "normal" family with its own fuckedupedness, making them totally incapable of dealing with the needs I had.

I wouldn't recommend my adoptive parents, but with them I wouldn't recommend many couples that do adopt. And that makes me reluctant to adoption in general. I know I cannot abolish it, and any attempt to that, would be futile, yet I don't see how we can change the adoption system so that run-of-the-mill wackos like my adoptive parents, would be kept from adopting children.

Difference

Niels and Kerry - thank you for explaining some of the burden you carried while growing up. It is sad to glimpse the lonely and painful world some children experience.

It is easy enough to see where adoptive parents go wrong, whether knowingly or through ignorance. It is harder to see what does work for kids, other than by avoiding those things that we know to be damaging.  As I read your posts, I wondered whether you had grown up as the only adoptees in your family? Were you the ones who stood out as different or were you surrounded by difference?

When we adopted, we made the early decision that our adopted child was not going to be the only adoptee in our family. It seemed unfair to graft a Korean baby on his own into an otherwise white family, so we applied to adopt again soon after our baby son joined us. We eventually adopted six of our eight children, from Korea, Taiwan and India.  Two of my three sisters also adopted, so my kids have many cousins who are intercountry adoptees.  We were (and still are) active in the intercountry adoption community, so my kids grew up with other adoptees amongst their best friends. This hasn't prevented my children or their cousins from facing the whole gamut of grief and loss issues, bullying, etc. but at least they have not struggled alone. I think this is one area where there is strength in numbers, as (IMO) isolation can be one of the cruelest legacies of adoption.

The same, but different

As I read your posts, I wondered whether you had grown up as the only adoptees in your family? Were you the ones who stood out as different or were you surrounded by difference?

In my case, I was adopted into an already established bio-family.  I was matched to "fit-in", but how matched can matched be when you come from different parts and regions, not at all like those from an already established family?  I was a grafted appendage... one that never felt solid or natural.  In my mind, something was always askew... not right... not complete... not the way things should and ought to be.  But these are things I NEVER dared to confess.... not to the people who supposedly saved me from retardation and/or death.

There were many times I wished I had another "sibling" like me.... not 2 or 3 or 10... but one...  ("All you need is one")... one who knew what it felt like to be the outsider brought-in by people wanting to create THE perfect family. I had an older brother... my Aparent's bio-son... and I suppose on paper, that made us the ideal family.  We were the family of four, complete with large home, fenced yard, dog who did tricks, and two (or more) cars.   What more could an American dreamer want to own and have in life?  [Oh, if only people knew what was taking place behind the so-called perfect family portrait!]

Only when I became an adult did I ever consider life in that family with a fellow adoptee.  Had I lived with another adoptee, would we have bonded and become best-buddies?  I don't know.  All I know is, I was "different", and different was not only NOT good... "different" was bad, and "different" deserved alienation, resentment and punishment.  I have many bad memories associated with being the only adoptee in a family that had only bio-children.  In too many was I was picked upon and chosen/alienated, and those are memories that never really go away.  While some saw me as being super "special", others found me as being too _____.   In that sense, being special and different was a curse I would have loved to have shared with another person... especially if that other person was intimately familiar with the type of "special treatment" given to those not especially liked, wanted, or appreciated.  [I hope that makes sense...]

one is a lonely number, eleven is a football team

I was an only child in my adoptive family, so indeed, I had no one around me I could share my experience with. So I understand the choice you made. Though I also see an upper limit. Some people are really serial adopters, which is a trend I am not all that happy with.

I wish adoption agencies would disseminate between adopters that try to create an optimally sized family, from the true adoptoholics. 

Adoptoholics

Ha! I hadn't heard of "adoptoholics" before...

I can understand your reservations about extremely large and complex families. Eight kids was (is) a big family by anyone's calculations. Our adoptions were spread over 14 years, with kids now range from 14 to 28 years old, so our older ones were in their mid to late teens when the younger children joined us. Even so, having a family this large meant having to make certain accommodations, for example scheduling special time with each child when they were younger.  While our kids were in their preteen years, we had designated days - mum days and dad days - where one parent would take one child out for a full day of activities of that child's choice.  We obviously spent time with all the kids on a daily basis but we also wanted to make sure each child had individual time and attention and didn't get "lost in the crowd".

In Australia, it isn't easy to adopt a lot of children. We had to undergo rigorous assessment for each of our kids and this didn't lessen as the family grew. In fact, our last adoption homestudy (for our seventh and eighth children) was done by the head of our government intercountry adoption unit and a departmental psychologist, rather than the usual contract social worker. They also interviewed each of our children individually and each child's teacher, to make sure that our children were in support of the adoption and that none of them was experiencing difficulties at school.

For us, eight was optimum. We wanted a large family, but stopped before things changed from busy to chaotic.  We are now trying to get used to a quieter house with only two kids still living at home. Sundays feel more normal, when everyone (plus partners and one baby grandson) turn up here for dinner.

Is it the rule, or is it the exception?

For us, eight was optimum. We wanted a large family, but stopped before things changed from busy to chaotic. 

I think it takes a very special couple to not only know what is it they want, but what it is they can handle.  [Excellent communication skills being a key element here... a talent that's very much needed when discussing future family-planning.]  I know when I was growing up, I hated having only one sibling and two parents who did not seem all that happy with one another.  Holiday dinners at our family table of four were uncomfortable, at best.  The sound of chewing would make my stomach turn.  Peace of mind and sanity came to me through my best friend's house/family, where there were six kids and two loud parents filling the house with all sorts of noise, smells, and commotion. In that house, all the girls worked together to help create a rare sit-down family dinner all would enjoy.   When I got older, I would leave my own  family-duty/obligation, and go to my friend's house for dessert.  I always felt like the uninvited guest, but in my mind, it was far better being the uninvited extra mouth to feed than being the only child who loathed the act of biting tongues, (fake politeness), and screaming silence. 

Meanwhile, my husband was the last of seven children in his own family.  He and his twin sister were unexpected deliveries.  I don't think a day goes by without his own childhood affecting his decisions -- especially if a given decision has to do with "alone time" and money.

We are a family of six -- 2 adults, 4 kids.  It has taken me 17 years to realize it takes a tough, but deeply loved and respected, commander (one who delegates specific tasks) to run the sort of home where no one person feels like he or she is drowning all alone. 

Your own story makes me curious.... did either you or your husband come from a large family?  In your own mind, when does busy become chaos?  In my own mind, it all becomes chaos when only one person is expected to be all things to all members of the family.

In Australia, it isn't easy to adopt a lot of children. We had to undergo rigorous assessment for each of our kids and this didn't lessen as the family grew. In fact, our last adoption homestudy (for our seventh and eighth children) was done by the head of our government intercountry adoption unit and a departmental psychologist, rather than the usual contract social worker. They also interviewed each of our children individually and each child's teacher, to make sure that our children were in support of the adoption and that none of them was experiencing difficulties at school.

After reading, The Adoption Maze and Underground network moves children from home to home , I wonder just how many American adopters can readily admit rigorous assessments (for each child placed) have been/are being made before each formal, legally binding, adoption becomes final?  When so much money can be made with each placement made, one must ask:   In Adoptionland, is full interest given to each child's needs "the rule" or is that a very lucky exception?  I tend to believe the placing agency has much to do with the making or breaking of a family.... and this, sadly, leads me to believe there are far too many bad (unmonitored, unregulated, private) agencies -- especially in the USA -- making serious mistakes, affecting the lives of many.

Pound Pup Legacy