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Destinations, Dreams and Dogs - International adventure with a fast-track family (& dogs) of Old World values, adopting the Russian-Italian-American good life on the go…!

The Slippery Slope of Serial Adoptions

We all know of huuuuge families, whether born the bio-way, or adopted into the home.  Some people just love kids, the more, the merrier.  Personally, I was never much into group activities….

I like the idea of one child, or maybe two.  For many years, I liked the idea of none.  I guess my personality is more the “I vant to be alone” type.  Quiet is no problem for me.

Noise is.

So, somehow we ended up with four older kids from Russia, all of whom we have trained to be fairly subdued.  It works.

But I have always marveled at those larger families who have several adoptions going, often simultaneously, from various countries.

“Oh, Bulgaria?  That’s next week, this week it’s our trip to Ukraine, next month we’ll be in China….”

These are what we call “Serial Adopters”, those who acquire kids like too many handbags at a designer sample sale in New York.  They are accessories, pure and simple:  we have one in brown, three in black, two in white, one in yellow.  I guess if Jesus loves the little children of the world, red and yellow, black and white, they are precious in His sight, so should we.

Adoptions can become addictive, pure and simple.  In our case, our first son had friends.  Several friends, whom we tried to pursue for years, costing us much time and money.  But the Russians decided that it would be preferable to ship his pre-adolescent orphanage-mates across krais (borders) to Islamic regions where they could be free foster children farm labor (with generous monthly stipends to the takers), rather than have them be adopted by us.

Nice.  We finally brought one of the friends home, the one they deemed to be fit for our family:  sufficiently destroyed in body and mind after years of institutionalism.  We adopted him and reached out to other older children, which gave us a bit of a reputation in the adoptive community.

Suckers.  Saints.  It all depended on whom you asked.

Agencies called us on a regular basis, asking if we would consider this older child, or that one, possibly a sibling set that no one else wanted.  Some might have felt we had “Stupid” plastered across our foreheads.  Those undergoing disruptions (ending their adoptions) checked in with us, certain that we were the right family for their previously out-of-control child.

But we were not serial adopters.  We felt, for us, that there had to be a certain connection with a child beyond the fact that he had no one else in the world.  Otherwise, we might end up with hundreds in our house.

And that might not be all that bad, either.  There were worse ways to go.

What do you think about serial adopters?




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6 Comments : Leave a Reply

  1. avatar Sybil says:

    I think the best perspective would have to be from the children themselves when they are grow up . I am wondering if there are already books written by children who grew up this way. I know this is not a new concept. There have long been foster parents who choose to raise many disabled children all at the same time and many foster families with many children of mixed heritages and races.

    Personally we couldn’t care less what our child’s heritage or race was when we adopted. However, we tried to view our child’s life through what would be her life. My husband and I were born and raised in San Francisco where people of every race and background live. We now live in suburbia, where it is mostly one race. Since we were not moving, our question was, “who did we think would have the best shot at happiness and comfort in our situation?” We went with that as our guide on who to adopt.

    • avatar admin says:

      That’s a great idea Sybil, on how to sift through one’s thoughts. I’ll have to see, also, if there’s a book like that (or if grown children would feel the luxury of being brutally honest if they didn’t really love the mini-UN setting…).

  2. avatar Ivanka says:

    Well…I hope serial adoption is doable and can be sucessful. As we are full throttle in the second and even third (if possible). I wondered if this was some sort of “Messiah Complex”? I never set out to adopt any children, much less an older girl from another country and I did not plan to fall in love with two of her friends from the Internat, but I did and I pray that God is leading and we are following Him into this adventure.

    • avatar admin says:

      Oh see, everyone, Ivanka is back with her new daughter! I must post a little blurb about this, I actually got to meet the “novaya dotch” (new daughter)….

      Best that you go full throttle now, Ivanka, before reality starts setting in-! (Are you planning on putting a trailer park in your backyard, or do you normally have 12 bedrooms-?) Details, details. This is what bunk beds were made for…. 🙂

      Welcome home!

      • avatar Ivanka says:

        Internat in Amerika. Only we have parents on board. Nothing wrong with bunking up?

        • avatar admin says:

          When we went to visit our first son (7.5 y.o.), there were 24 or 27 beds in one room. Then we went to court and the Russians wanted to know if he would have his own room-! Yes, and then he ended up in our bed for the first couple of years…. US States often have occupancy laws which list how many bedrooms you need for how many people. As far as EE countries, I always tell them that the children have an option of their own room, but usually prefer to be with a same-sex sibling. After being with so many kids, the loneliness factor can be very real.

          I remember having similar discussions here: “We’re not trying to recreate the orphanage, are we?”

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