Tuesday, March 11, 2008


An article in our local paper will have people up in arms again about Guatemalan adoptions. Sigh. It is such an awful thing to think about fraudulent adoptions, however if someone really started looking into the American adoption system, I'm sure the same things would come up:



False Documents

Forged Signatures

What the article goes into is the recent raid on Casa Quivira, an adoption agency in Guatemala run through a man in Florida. I'm not sure how you can run an agency from another country, although I'm pretty sure that much like our agency, the man in Florida has people who report to him regularly. In any case, the raid that occurred in August, left 46 babies in limbo. There are still 36 babies left in limbo, whose birth parents may have falsified documents, or perhaps the attorneys or notaries associated with the agency falsified documents. In any case, 36 children will be left without care. Someone will care for them while they are young, but as soon as they are old enough, will be left to their own devices. This means, that out of the 36, a good estimate is that 30-34 of the children will live in poverty and be homeless. The ten other children, have bee adopted and are home in the United States. However, that does not mean that they are cleared. If something were to surface that would be suspect in their case, the Guatemalan agency has a duty to invalidate the adoption and try to recover the child. I can't imagine that bringing home your child isn't the end. I would live in constant fear of someone knocking on my door to take away my child.

It is interesting to me that the agency that is being targeted is also a "baby house." An orphanage.

One of the reasons that Mike and I chose Guatemala is the private foster care system. The majority of children in Guatemala that are placed for adoption are placed in private foster care. This has proven to be a better situation, due to the fact that children are given more one on one care. So, the agency that is being investigated isn't one with private foster care.

Just like the Dateline: To Catch a Baby Broker, the article only covers one aspect of International Adoption, and so you don't get to see the other side. Of course things go wrong, of course people are greedy and if they can make money, they will, but the majority of Guatemalan adoptions are legal.

What's really sad is that this paints adoptions in general in a bad light. People start to question adoptive parents about how their children came to be. (Did you pay someone off? How do you know that the child you have isn't stolen?) All of the hype of adoptions has been seen on MSNBC, The Today Show, Associated Press articles, and more. It really brings a sense of dread to adoptions, and I fear that people are thinking that all adoptions from foreign countries are corrupt, and illegal.

Luckily, Mike and I have never been asked any awful questions. I'm not sure how I'd respond if someone did ask

Mike and I will never really know if Ché's birthmom really is who she says she is. We have a picture of her holding Ché that we will share with him at an appropriate time, and we know that through DNA testing, she really was his biological mother. At least we don't have to worry about her selling Ché, or that he was kidnapped. However, we don't know if she accepted money to put him up for adoption, or if she really was young, single, and couldn't make it with him. She kept him for three months, and that fact alone makes it easier for me to believe that she did what she thought was best for him.

I don't really have a good way to end this post, other than to say that these articles and news casts are only showing one side, and so try to remember that there are two sides to every story.

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