Yes, I work adoptions, finding homes for children who have been brought into the foster care system and whose parents are no longer on the scene. I take great joy in some folks who are trying to adopt. Some of these parents impress me with the power of their love and commitment and their willingness to put these kiddos’ often immense needs before their own. Other parents, not so much.
To those of you who are looking for someone to fit your family fantasies and to make your imagined life complete, please, I beg of you, just get a dog. There are all breeds, so you can handpick the size and shape and color and temperament that will fit your lifestyle. It’s the perfect custom companion. A child is just not like that.
I receive home studies from folks honestly seeking to adopt; who want a white girl between 4 and 8 (old enough to be housebroken but still young enough to be cute), a child without inconvenient connections to birth family, who will be bright enough to be academically successful so as to fit in with her highly-educated parents. Aarghh! These are not custom cabinets, folks, these are little people. Little people who have been through the pain and trauma of losing an entire family, because of mom and dad’s abuse and neglect. These kids have been saddled with problems by parents who put themselves first, and they need someone to love them, to commit to them, not pick through them like the last extra-large shirts on the clearance rack. The last thing these children need is you turning up your nose because they’re not the right color or size or because they get in trouble at school or because they don’t immediately jump up and lick your face when you introduce yourselves.
So, if you want a child to meet your wants instead of one for whose needs you can sacrifice your wants, please try a dog. Get what you want. Puppies will love you, they won’t have ADHD, they’ll be fine at the kennel once in a while and they’ll enhance your lifestyle instead of turning it upside down. Because any parent can tell you, that’s exactly what children do.