What a great topic! As the proud new mommy of an AA child I felt the need to put in my two cents.
For us, "checking every box" was an easy decision. I will admit it was made easier by the fact that Tom's brother & sister-in-law had already adopted two AA/mixed race children so there was never a question of family acceptance on that side of the family. As for my family, when we first began making an adoption plan we investigated everything (international, overseas, bi-racial) and were very open to the fact that we were open to any race/color/creed and my family was very supportive from the beginning.
I also totally understand that geography plays a big part in what some famililes will accept. I happen to live in a section of the country (NJ) that is a bit more understanding of mixed-race families than other parts. Not to stereotype, but is not as accepted as easily in some of the other parts of the country.
But let me say that (as "corny" as this may sound) when I look at my Abigail I don't see the color of her skin. And of course I think she is more beautiful than any other baby around (as all parents do ) In fact, I had my "A HA" moment shortly after we brought her home. We were at the christing of the four month old son of friends of ours. It was the first time I had seen Vincent since we had been home and the first thing that crossed my mind was "Oh my gosh, he's so pale!" And then it was like, "Oh yeah, Abby is AA - I forgot!"
I have to share a story- My manicurist and & I were discussing adoption (she's a great listener and was my sounding board during my entire 2 year adoption journey - thanks Donna! )and she said that she was very happy when she found out that we were adopting a full AA child and not a child of mixed race. From her point of view she thought that raising a bi-racial child would be more difficult. In her mind, adolescents of mixed race have a harder time trying to fit in than those that are of full AA background, and she didn't feel she would be prepared to handle those obstacles. I thought that was an interesting point of view, and not one that had occurred to me. Not that it would have mattered, but it was interesting to hear another take on the subject.
I am reading all of these posts about all of the birthmoms trying to find adoptive families open to starting a Rainbow Family, and as someone mentioned earlier (I don't remember who - sorry ) Finalization can't come soon enough for us. Tom & I have already decided that if & when we do this again, we will be requesting an AA/bi-racial child.
Again, I totally understand that everyone has their reasons for "checking the boxes" that they check, but as Tey&Ty's Mom said, try to think outside the box! I am not so naive as to think that Abby's racial differences won't ever be a problem, but I am learning every day and looking forward to facing the challenges that may lie ahead. And especially for all of the Abrazo PIWs, there is such a great support system here that I know if I ever have a question, concern, or just need to vent, there is a place I can go - and that also makes a HUGE difference!
To all of you PIWs out there, visit the Rainbow families thread and see what a great support system is out there. I'm sure I speak for everyone when I say please feel free to PM any of us with questions, concerns, or just to vent!
I pray every day for all of the PIWs and birthmoms making life-altering decisions, but there will always be a special place in my heart for the Rainbow Families and those wonderful children awaiting Special families.