There are countless folks across America who are (understandably) desperate to adopt.
Still, there is a right way and a wrong way to go about it– no matter how desperate any hopeful wanna-be parent might feel?
One Texas woman recently found out out the hard way how not to seek out a child to adopt.
Wrong Way! (Turn Around)
Rebecca Lanette Taylor of Crockett, Texas is 49 years old, so she was surely old enough to know better than to try to buy a stranger’s child in a WalMart. Yet that is exactly what she is alleged to have attempted to do in her small Houston suburb, proving that maturity is not always an adequate deterrent when one is desperate to adopt.
Taylor reportedly approached a mother with a baby and a one-year-old in a WalMart self checkout line, where she commented on the tot’s blonde hair and blue eyes and asked how much the mother would sell him for? She’d been searching for a baby to buy, she said, indicating this one would be a perfect fit for her. She then is said to have followed the mother and children out of the store, offering up to $500k for one of the children. The frightened mother got away and reported the incident to police, who verified the encounter using available video footage. Taylor was arrested and charged with attempting to buy a child, which is a third degree felony offense here in Texas. She was released on a $50k bond, pending trial.
Any savvy criminal defense attorney will likely argue that Taylor’s mental health drove her to make this ill-advised effort to acquire someone else’s child. It may not be entirely far-fetched, either? While most infertile couples seeking to adopt are emotionally stable, research cited by Time magazine in 9/14 found that not having children can actually make some people crazy. Said Dr. Sofia Gameiro of the University of Cardiff of Wales: “(this) link between a sustained wish for children and worse mental health was irrespective of the women’s fertility diagnosis and treatment history.”
Taylor isn’t the first to try to buy a baby, and sadly, she won’t be the last. She is, however, a Texas-sized reminder that children must never (ever) be bought nor sold.
Longing to Adopt? Do It Right.
For those who know better than to try to acquire children at a WalMart and who are willing to adopt legally, there are numerous options available.
For those seeking to adopt an infant, the domestic adoption agency process, as perplexing as the paperwork and expenses may seem, can actually be a far healthier route than any independent adoption pursuit.
Licensed adoption agencies like Abrazo have staff experienced in assessing parental readiness. We provide the best casework and counseling to prepare would-be adopters for the emotions that come with adopting. The ideal homestudy procedures measure the potential stability of an adoptive home, while also supplementing the pre-parenthood education of those seeking to adopt. Ethical adoption agencies maintain regular and direct contact with their clients throughout the pre-placement and post-placement phases, offering emotional support and helping to troubleshoot, should issues arise.
For those desperate to adopt, this may seem less appealing than the seemingly-instant gratification of a private adoption or a DIY/social media adoption campaign. But the reality is that the very best adoptions happen when children need them most, not when adults most want babies. Agency adoptions are structured to provide a learning curve. During this, the lessons prospective adopters learn (about waiting, about adapting expectations, about the birthmother experience, about loss and grief, about the best interests of children, about thinking as a parent and not as a desperate have-not) truly do make them better parents when they do eventually adopt.
What Feeling Desperate to Adopt Really Means
There’s nothing wrong with feeling desperate to adopt; the longing to parent is an intrinsic urge that’s typically accompanied by deep emotion. The intensity of that feeling isn’t a bad thing. It’s what people do with it that matters, really?
If you’re feeling desperate to adopt, be gentle with yourself. Acknowledge your own desire, then remember that every adoption is necessarily not about what grown-ups want– rather, it’s about what children need. Recognize that what your desperation is telling you isn’t to make a cash bid on someone else’s kid at your local WalMart. Instead, your psyche is begging you to seek out an experienced infertility therapist with whom to grieve your fertility losses and gift yourselves some emotional space, to prepare you to adopt instead.
Once you’ve done that– after you’ve concluded all efforts to reproduce biologically and have gone through counseling and feel ready to pursue adoption– then is the optimal time to contact Abrazo or another licensed adoption agency to get things started.
Once you’ve worked through feeling desperate to adopt, you’ll be that much closer to being truly ready to adopt, and that’s when you’ll know you’re best prepared for parenthood.