Originally Posted by MissinNYC
I personally wouldn't have felt comfortable adopting a healthy infant, given the needs for other kids. Once we had established that we wanted to pursue adoption, we decided to choose to adopt from the situation with the most need, which, we feel, is domestic foster care adoption, specifically of slightly older/SN kids.
I didn't feel comfortable joining the pool of waiting families wanting a healthy white infant, either. But I felt plenty comfortable joining the pool of waiting families wanting a healthy little girl from Korea. In choosing international adoption (which was what we always wanted), we also gave up some of the things that seem so coveted in the US domestic adoption process....infancy, looking like the birth family/adoptive family (race), an opportunity for much more knowledge of the birth family, birth cultures in common, and (to a certain extent) an unknown maternal history of drinking/light drug use.
Those "losses" were okay to us, though.
I think it all comes down to finding the child you want to raise. If there are a lot of families who also want to raise a child like that, then yes--you're going to wait. (In our case, the wait was also contributed to by the adoption quota policies of S. Korea.) What I don't want to see are a bunch of families choosing adoption paths with losses that AREN'T okay to them....some families are just not equipped (or truly, internally willing) to raise a child of color, or a child with special needs, or an older child. "Settling" for a child is soooooooo not good for a child, and that's what I would worry would happen if fertile couples were excluded/ranked.
Something similar happens with age of the parents in (some) international programs. Younger parents can adopt a young child, but older parents can only adopt special needs children or older toddlers/children. I've seen this work out great, and I've also seen instances where I want to cover my eyes and not think where this is going for the family/child. If a family is so desperate to make their dream of adoption come true, I've seen that they will take the chance
that they're able to parent a child that is less than ideal for their family or parenting circumstances. This is not good.
Not at all. I strongly believe that children deserve better than to be a risk or a gamble...or to be the plan B that parents "hope will work out." In the case of particularly vulnerable children (like with special needs, or older kids who have gone through a lot in their young lives), I think this is even more important. The adoptive parents of these children should walk into parenting WANTING these children...not settling for these children because of agency adoption policies.
So yes, if there is a fertile couple who really isn't sure they can handle the challenges of being a transracial family, or raising a child who's been in foster care (domestically or internationally), or raising a child who starts out in their family at age 1 or 2, then YES they should be able to get in line with the rest of PAPs and wait for the child they feel they can best parent (...even if that means they end up in the white, domestic, newborn adoption process.) That child, whomever it turns out to be, deserves nothing less than ready, able parents.
We all have our own circumstances that, internally, tell us what we feel we're able to do and what we feel we aren't. Based on those feelings, we go out and try to build our family. Sometimes fate/life throws us a curve ball (we got two), and yes...some families learn to cope. But some don't. I would never want an adoption rule or exclusion based on fertility to make it harder for a PAP to choose the family they feel they can best parent. Doing so would be such a loss to that adoptive parent, to the children of that family, and especially to the adopted child.
I admire you for wanting to adopt special needs older kids. Really I do.
In our case, that wasn't ideal for us (and wouldn't have been ideal for the child). Our two oldest (bio) children had/have severe special needs, and we didn't want to parent another child with special needs. So yeah, we entered into a program that was more popular, had a longer wait, etc. But the point is, we were excited and able and willing to raise our [adopted] daughter. I would have been very upset if I'd been turned away from adopting a healthy child, or from entering a popular adoption program, because we could conceive/birth a baby. To me, that's not the point at all. The point is being a great parent to a child that needs a family. If we were good enough for her, and for her needs, and we wanted and embraced those needs as parents, then that's all that should matter. The functionality of our reproductive organs has nothing to do with our parenting skills.