International Adoption Possible Issues? — The Bump
Adoption

International Adoption Possible Issues?

DW and I are talking about baby #3, and though we're 80% likely to go with AI, I want to look into adopting from another country this time around. We have an open adoption with DD, and though it's amazing and I'm happy with our arrangement, I don't think it would be the right thing for us again, for a myriad of reasons.

The only couples I know who have done international adoption are heterosexual, and I know that some countries have bans on gay adoption, and that a lot of the international orphanages are Catholic which makes gay adoption nearly impossible. We're also atheists, and that's what led us to go through with an independent adoption the first time around. When we looked at agencies many of them required you to be Christian. I live in MA where people love gay adoption and it was never an issue for us before, but our lack of religious identity were an issue for most of the agencies we went to. I even looked into it with the ACLU and apparently it's very common for secular couples who want to adopt being rejected on religious basis. It's such obvious discrimination and it's so common, but there's so little that I can do about it, other than lie about our religion but I refuse to be forced into hiding over my lack of religious persuasion.

Does anyone with IA experience have any insight? Were the agencies you went through religious organizations or secular organizations? Did they make a big deal about your religious persuasion?


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Re: International Adoption Possible Issues?

  • Internationally, your religion or religious persuasion could have little importance depending on what country you choose.  Unfortunately the larger problem is that you are in a same-sex relationship.  There are currently no countries (to my knowledge) that openly allow gay or lesbian people to adopt (whether you are currently in a relationship or not).  You can search elligilibity criteria on adoption dot state dot gov.  That said, some people make it work by presenting themselves as a hetero individual adopting who lives with a roommate, or some similar situation.  Don't get me wrong, I am 1000% in support of same-sex couples adopting.  Two of my best friends who are lesbians have two DS from Vietnam, and another same sex couple have a DD from Guatemala.  However, in the last 5-10 years most all countries still open to IA have gotten significantly more diligent in disallowing single PAPs who aren't either divorced or widowed.  I guess in their minds if you were previously in a hetero relationship, there is less of a chance you could currently be gay?

    I do know one same-sex couple who recently brought home twin DDs from the Democratic Republic of Congo (they had to lie about their orientation), and of course there is Jillian Michales who just brought her DD home from Haiti.  But if you'll notice, she didn't come out publically until after her DD was home.  

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  • We're researching IA.  One of the agencies we're looking into is a Christian agency, but there are a couple of others I don't think are that have been recommended or positively reviewed.  Maybe check with Adoption Ark?  

    I don't know much about lesbian couples applying to adopt, but I'm pretty sure there are countries that allow this.  I've heard that it might require one parent adopting the child in-country and then filing for joint adoption in the U.S., but I'm not sure.   

    ETA: Here's a website I found listing agencies open to same-sex couples adopting: http://itsconceivablenow.com/adoption-agencies/

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  • image kacelle:

    We're researching IA.  One of the agencies we're looking into is a Christian agency, but there are a couple of others I don't think are that have been recommended or positively reviewed.  Maybe check with Adoption Ark?  

    I don't know much about lesbian couples applying to adopt, but I'm pretty sure there are countries that allow this.  I've heard that it might require one parent adopting the child in-country and then filing for joint adoption in the U.S., but I'm not sure.   

    ETA: Here's a website I found listing agencies open to same-sex couples adopting: http://itsconceivablenow.com/adoption-agencies/

    Of the agencies listed on this website,  I think only 2 that are still open offer IA services and none of their direct programs (the country's elligilibty requirements)  allow same-sex/ singles to adopt.

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  • image Robby6:
    image kacelle:

    We're researching IA.  One of the agencies we're looking into is a Christian agency, but there are a couple of others I don't think are that have been recommended or positively reviewed.  Maybe check with Adoption Ark?  

    I don't know much about lesbian couples applying to adopt, but I'm pretty sure there are countries that allow this.  I've heard that it might require one parent adopting the child in-country and then filing for joint adoption in the U.S., but I'm not sure.   

    ETA: Here's a website I found listing agencies open to same-sex couples adopting: http://itsconceivablenow.com/adoption-agencies/

    Of the agencies listed on this website,  I think only 2 that are still open offer IA services and none of their direct programs (the country's elligilibty requirements)  allow same-sex/ singles to adopt.

    Good to know.  Sorry this is so tough for you, OP. 

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  • It is really difficult and so unfair when millions of orphans are waiting for families.
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  • Yeah, I don't know if it's likely, since you're married. If you weren't, you may be able to adopt as a single woman; there are still a number of countries that allow that (single man? like forget it ever ever). That being said, I think the countries that do allow single parent adoption may also be some of the most anti-gay around. Like Uganda (our country). :/
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  • Thank you everyone for your help. It's depressingly starting to look like more and more of a pipe dream than anything viable, though I'm not giving up quite yet. It's just so frustrating and painful to look at my happy children and know that there are so many people in the world who actively hate us, and think our happy children would be better off in the foster system, just because we're different.
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  • I, too, have been 'rejected' for international adoption.  In my case the reason is different than yours --  I have anxiety disorder for which I take a low dose daily medication. I have never been unable to function but was prescribed the medication to improve my quality of life. My husband and I cannot find any country that will accept this history, even with a favorable letter from my treating physician stating that it will not at all impact our ability to parent a child.  While our situations are outwardly different I definitely understand how disheartening it is to be confronted with ridiculous, discriminatory laws, esp when there are so many children who need homes and when we know we can be good parents.  I hear you and I'm sorry you're having to deal with this.    
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