Russia to US: No More Adoptions

Several of the children at my daughter’s school were adopted from Russia. I know that one of the families is — was — in the middle of a very difficult second adoption. Last week we heard the news that Russia was considering shutting down all adoptions by Americans. From the Associated Press:

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday he will sign a contro…

  1. Cornelius Julius Sebastian

    I’m sure the state will step in and provide top notch surrogate parenthood….

  2. MLH
    Cornelius Julius Sebastian: I’m sure the state will step in and provide top notch surrogate parenthood…. · 2 minutes ago

    I think that they already do. My sister and BIL adopted from Russia 9 yrs ago. My sis told me: that if you can’t support your child the child will be taken from you and placed in a “baby or children’s home.” It’s not your family’s duty raise your child. Parenthood is a privilege not a right.

  3. Fake John Galt

    @MLH #2: I once had a government official explain to me that your children are not actually yours; they are in fact wards of the state until they reach the age of majority.  The state only allows parents to raise children based on the parents good behavior and can take them away from their parents at any time it deems necessary.

  4. Fake John Galt

    Personally I would prefer that our citizens would adopt first in the US before going elsewhere. 

    I have some close friends that adopted twin girls from Russia several years ago.  When I asked why Russia they explained that adoption laws in the US have changed so that there is a real fear if they adopted a child born in the US that the biological parents could show up at a later date, take the children back or demand to be part of the children’s life or use the threats of these legal actions to extort money from them.  If so the laws need to be changed back so as to protect the adoptive parents and children better. 

  5. Indaba
    Fake John Galt: Personally I would prefer that our citizens would adopt first in the US before going elsewhere. 

    I have some close friends that adopted twin girls from Russia several years ago.  When I asked why Russia they explained that adoption laws in the US have changed so that there is a real fear if they adopted a child born in the US that the biological parents could show up at a later date, take the children back or demand to be part of the children’s life or use the threats of these legal actions to extort money from them.  If so the laws need to be changed back so as to protect the adoptive parents and children better.  · 1 minute ago

    Yes. I spoke to an adopted woman, now 55, and she said this is why not to adopt except outside of North America. 

  6. Mollie Hemingway
    C
    Indaba

    Fake John Galt: Personally I would prefer that our citizens would adopt first in the US before going elsewhere. 

    I have some close friends that adopted twin girls from Russia several years ago.  When I asked why Russia they explained that adoption laws in the US have changed so that there is a real fear if they adopted a child born in the US that the biological parents could show up at a later date, take the children back or demand to be part of the children’s life or use the threats of these legal actions to extort money from them.  If so the laws need to be changed back so as to protect the adoptive parents and children better.  · 1 minute ago

    Yes. I spoke to an adopted woman, now 55, and she said this is why not to adopt except outside of North America.  · 5 minutes ago

    Well, that’s not quite true. We’re hoping to adopt and we’re doing it domestically. It’s not true that, if done properly, a biological parent can successfully make demands or take away your child. But the laws and bureaucracy are difficult.

  7. David Knights
    Fake John Galt: Personally I would prefer that our citizens would adopt first in the US before going elsewhere. 

    I have some close friends that adopted twin girls from Russia several years ago.  When I asked why Russia they explained that adoption laws in the US have changed so that there is a real fear if they adopted a child born in the US that the biological parents could show up at a later date, take the children back or demand to be part of the children’s life or use the threats of these legal actions to extort money from them.  If so the laws need to be changed back so as to protect the adoptive parents and children better.  · 8 minutes ago

    My wife and I have two adopted daughters from China.  One of the reasons we did adoptions from China is the messed up nature of adoption in the US.  There is a tremendous need for adoption in the US, but the current legal system in place regarding adoptions is simply to dysfunctional.

  8. kidCoder

    It’s a pattern Russia finds familiar: Government becomes more demanding, the people become upset, they overthrow the government, and replace it with more of the same. Rinse and repeat.

  9. David Knights
    Mollie Hemingway, Ed.

    Indaba

    Yes. I spoke to an adopted woman, now 55, and she said this is why not to adopt except outside of North America.  · 5 minutes ago

    Well, that’s not quite true. We’re hoping to adopt and we’re doing it domestically. It’s not true that, if done properly, a biological parent can successfully make demands or take away your child. But the laws and bureaucracy are difficult. · 3 minutes ago

    Good luck Mollie.  I hope it works out. 

    That said, with courts providing ever expanding rights to an ever wider circle of biological relations to adopted children, you never know when a distant relation, never known to you or the child will crawl out of the woodwork and cause you expense and heartache, if not worse.

    Lawyers and courts in the country have totally messed up adoption here. 

  10. Fricosis Guy

    I believe the Russians have some legitimate concerns lumped in with their posturing. I’m on mobile, so I can’t contribute much to the thread. Just three points from someone who has made the international adoption walk: 1.) Russia is very attractive to the unwary or shallow because you can get a kid who “looks like you.” Fly-by-night Russia programs have sprung up everywhere as legitimate agencies have left. 2.) The kids are warehoused in Russia…they’re fed and cleaned and that’s it. The infant may not be touched other than at feedings and changings. Bring a Russian child home > 12 months and you’ll have attachment/bonding problems. 3.) Country closings are a fact of international adoption. The amount of money changing hands tempts scandal here and abroad. The Russia closure may bring good in the long run.

  11. MLH

    Is there still not a bona fide orphanage in Burbank? Once met a set carpenter who adopted 2 kids from there. 

    Friends of my parents, who adopted 4 great kids in the late 50s and early 60s, told my sister that if they were adopting now (ish), they’d go outside the states. 

    So, yes, good luck Mollie. Perhaps if more adoptive parents worked through our system it would change to favor the children and those who want to be parent. 

  12. 9thDistrictNeighbor

    We attempted to adopt from Russia about 11 years ago.  It is a very long, painful story; but Russia has never had the welfare of its people, let alone orphans, in mind.  Women who go to Moscow to search for work without a permit may end up in prostitution, drinking, drugs.  At the time, if you had no Moscow papers, you couldn’t go to a hospital for care; babies were left at the hospital door “father unknown,” to be declared wards of the state and taken to a  Baby House.  Often, if these children survive and are adopted, they suffer from catastrophic physical, psychological or developmental delays that cannot be overcome by the love of an adoptive parent.

    It is possible to adopt a healthy baby in the US.  You absolutely must use a reputable agency.  Prospective adoptive parents are put through the ringer; there are attorneys preying on the desperation of adoptive parents quite literally selling babies to couples tired of waiting. 

    To the adoptive parent, life is a great gift from God.

  13. Fake John Galt

    Well the Russian option is not without some additional peril.  I know that my friends that adopted from Russia were jerked around toward the end.  They were on call for a month told that they had to be in route within 24 hours of a set of twins becoming available.  Once in Russia they discovered one of the twins was in quarantine for a month, unless they purchased medicine that made the child better in a day or two.  Meanwhile the orphanage expected a donation; the Russian judge needed money to expedite the paper work, etc.  I gather they had to pay an additional $10000+ of charges on the Russian side that they did not discover till they got there, they had to wire back home for funds to get them and the girls out of Russia.  Once back it turned out that one of the girls had developmental issues that required special care, even though they were told all checked out in Russia.  They were told these girls are twins but it sure does not look like it to look at them.   In the end they say it is worth it but they sure went through alot. 

  14. Barkha Herman

    If adoption becomes illegal, child smuggling will increase.

  15. Lucy Pevensie
    Fricosis Guy: I believe the Russians have some legitimate concerns lumped in with their posturing. . . . Just three points from someone who has made the international adoption walk: 1.) Russia is very attractive to the unwary or shallow because you can get a kid who “looks like you.” Fly-by-night Russia programs have sprung up everywhere as legitimate agencies have left. 2.) The kids are warehoused in Russia…they’re fed and cleaned and that’s it.  . . . Bring a Russian child home > 12 months and you’ll have attachment/bonding problems. 3.) Country closings are a fact of international adoption. The amount of money changing hands tempts scandal here and abroad. The Russia closure may bring good in the long run.

    I totally agree that there are lots of problems with Russian adoption, although the attachment issues are not quite as universal as you make out; I’ve known both very successful and very unsuccessful Russian adoptions. Also, closure is extremely common in international adoption, as you say, but this closure is not even purportedly for the sake of improving the program, it’s explicitly a retaliation for an unrelated US policy decision. 

  16. Lucy Pevensie
    David Knights

    Mollie Hemingway, Ed.

    Indaba

     

     

    Good luck Mollie.  I hope it works out. 

    That said, with courts providing ever expanding rights to an ever wider circle of biological relations to adopted children, you never know when a distant relation, never known to you or the child will crawl out of the woodwork and cause you expense and heartache, if not worse.

    Lawyers and courts in the country have totally messed up adoption here. 

    How long ago were your Chinese adoptions?  You must not have been keeping up with the adoption world since then. International adoption has become perhaps more difficult and messed up than domestic over the course of the ten years since we brought my daughter home from Vietnam. 

    Fundamentally, there is a huge bias in the world against the idea that relatively prosperous American married adoptive parents might be good for kids. Leftists see international adoption as “cultural genocide.” They see abortion or being raised by biological unmarried and unstable, even distant blood relatives as preferable to domestic adoption. 

  17. Joseph Paquette

    The number of children needing adoption in Russia is a national embarrassment, so this law is an easy natural retaliation for the Kremlin. 

    Sadly, this is about Russian nationalism and pride, not the needs of children.

  18. David Knights
    Lucy Pevensie

    David Knights

    Mollie Hemingway, Ed.

    Indaba

     

    How long ago were your Chinese adoptions?  You must not have been keeping up with the adoption world since then. International adoption has become perhaps more difficult and messed up than domestic over the course of the ten years since we brought my daughter home from Vietnam. 

    Fundamentally, there is a huge bias in the world against the idea that relatively prosperous American married adoptive parents might be good for kids. Leftists see international adoption as “cultural genocide.” They see abortion or being raised by biological unmarried and unstable, even distant blood relatives as preferable to domestic adoption.  · 46 minutes ago

    Our first adoption was in 2005 and our second was 18 months ago.  The international adoption arena has certainly become more difficult as countries “open” and “close” for adoption with some regularity.  Our first adoption took 8 months from beginning to end.  Our second was 3+ years and would have been longer if our daughter had not been classified as special needs.

    When there were bilateral treaties between countries, things worked fine.  The advent of the Hauge convention on international adoption has made things much worse.

  19. Diaryof1

    Wishing you all God’s grace and blessing as you pursue domestic adoption, Mollie & Mark.

  20. Fricosis Guy

    Rather than quote and comment repeatedly, I’ll group:

    • Lucy: You’re right that attachment/bonding issues are far from universal, the problem is in orphanages with bad practices and when adopting children > 12 months. 

    • Mollie: You said “It’s not true that, if done properly, a biological parent can successfully make demands or take away your child.”  That may be so in Virginia, but even in VA family court judges have wide discretion and one unscrupulous birth parent (or family member) can make that contract awfully hard to enforce.  Also, see my next comment.
    • Various:  We can talk about changing the laws, but there’s so much the law doesn’t touch.  For instance, why do you think it is so hard for older parent to adopt domestically?  Here’s the way our social worker explained it.  The birth mom loves the idea of a mature, secure couple…until she meets you.  Then the reality sinks in; she’s giving her child to her parents.  If you’re lucky, she acts on this before you bring your child home, because few family court judges won’t return your child to a determined, sober birth mom.

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