' [Birth Mother] First Mother Forum: When Disaster Strikes, Adoption is Sure to Follow, Part II (and III)

Monday, March 28, 2011

When Disaster Strikes, Adoption is Sure to Follow, Part II (and III)

Would-be adopters have begun circling Japan in the wake of the tragic earthquake and tsunami earlier this month. First Mother Forum readers may recall that after the January 11, 2010 earthquake in Haiti, Catholic Charities and other south Florida groups planned a massive airlift of perhaps several thousand of children thought to have been orphaned (When Disaster Strikes, Adoption is Sure to Follow). Others descended on Haiti, seizing children almost randomly. Fortunately saner voices prevailed. While expediting adoptions already in progress—the United States took in 1,090 children--responsible international adoption agencies urged child advocates to concentrate on helping keep children in Haiti through supporting extended families.

I thought Japan would be different because Americans must be aware that it has resources to care for its children and strong family ties assure that most children who cannot be cared for by their parents are taken in by relatives. I underestimated the chutzpah of those who fancy themselves child savers or just plain want a child, no matter how they get it.

Japanese adoption agencies have received emails with offers to adopt children; some writers include specifications for the child they seek, “a girl, less than 6 months old, healthy child". The arrogance and insensitivity is mind-blowing. “’I honestly tell you such a kind of emails makes Japanese people very uncomfortable, because for us, sound like someone who are looking for “what I want” from our terrible disaster,’”Tazuru Ogaway, director of the Japanese adoption agency Across Japan told Fox News.com.

We at FMF encourage Americans wishing to help the Japanese to donate to emergency relief organizations. Americans interested in taking in needy children should contact their state’s child welfare agency.

Lorraine Here:  

The adoptable baby shortage! cont.

Our bedroom has just been painted (pale pale peach) which is good, but I have a really bad cold which is bad, so I'm abed, which is okay. This morning as I was flipping channels I managed not to miss the morning adoption story, catching the tail end of an "adoption scam" feature on The Early Show on CBS. Though I missed the gory details, I got the point: a nice, respectable couple are in the hunt for a baby and were scammed by someone awful who took their money, but they ended up without a child. How terrible! 

Second Choice
Adam Pertman, whom a friend calls The Oracle as he's everywhere there is an adoption story, weighed in with anti-adoption scam advice for prospective adoptive parents as well as "birth mothers," and the story came to a close with the prospective "mother" saying that she knew their baby was out there somewhere--the unsaid message: maybe in some woman's tummy right now and we'll find her! 

What caught my attention of course was the typical focus of adoption stories in the media: The adoptable baby shortage, and what a shame that is! Here at First Mother Forum, our take is a tad different: Isn't it great that there are not more babies that need homes?

Note bene: For all who stumble upon this and decide we are awful people for not being cheer leaders for finding a baby for every couple who wants one, please read on the side bar: What We Think About Adoption.


  1. I agree...soooo tired of hearing would-be adoptive parents talk about "finding THEIR baby". Just one more example how adoptees are objectified. And yes, it's very sad when people look at the kind of tragedy Japan has experienced as an opportunity to get what they want.

  2. It does not surprise me that the army of greedy, parasitical and evil nutbags that sell babies for a living along with their freakish clients are hovering around Japan like vultures.

    Japan is not going to allow their children to be pimped out like pieces of meat from various articles that I have read. Japan values family, and it is wonderful that the adoption industry will not get its filthy paws on their precious children!

    Japan could teach the rest of the world a thing or two considering babies are being bought and sold in adoption across North America daily.

    So great to see them not allowing their children to be sold to God knows who in this bizarre, unnatural, and unholy experiment!!

  3. Shortage of adoptable babies? Is that adoptee SOURCE country the United States of America, we are talking about? There are clubs and such of people who have done an international adoption FROM the US, so how can there be a shortage there, some babies too old, too African, too male?

  4. Maybe the baby shortage could induce people to do what they used to do before adoption became so profitable for the adoption industry...adjust to and accept infetility.

  5. Another nation has a catastrophe .. and the vultures begin circling. Don't they see how predatory they appear? People who prey on families in crisis, on children, like this, give a very bad name to adoptive parents.

  6. Sadly, American PAPs do not see themselves as predatory.... This countries wannabe parents are convinced that for some reason all nations children should be American. The failure to see the reality of the situation is typical.

  7. "We at FMF encourage Americans wishing to help the Japanese to donate to emergency relief organizations. Americans interested in taking in needy children should contact their state’s child welfare agency." Right?

    Isn't the lack of babies needing homes a good thing? how do so many get it so wrong?

  8. There is no comparison between conditions in Haiti before their earthquake and those in Japan, nor between two very different cultures, one poverty-stricken and one affluent and modern.

    Japan is at least as technologically advanced as the US, maybe more so. They had the best earthquake preparedness in the world, but this one was bigger than anything that had hit before. That anyone would think this tragedy in Japan was going to be a goldmine of babies for adoption just shows their ignorance.

    Theodore, yes, babies being adopted out of the USA to Europe and Canada are mostly Black , from inner cities, considered the bottom of the adoption market here. I got that straight from a black male adoptee out of foster care, I think he knew what he was talking about. Why it is "kewl"for White Americans to adopt a Black child from exotic Ethiopia and not from the less exotic streets of Harlem is a mystery to me, but there it is.

    As to Japan and the lack of adoption, that is not all so lovely either. There is a lot of racism and nationalism in Japan that looks down on those not of pure Japanese heritage. Family and heritage matter a lot, but the downside of that is those considered "foreign" or illegitimate are treated as outsiders not family. Traditionally many do not want to taint their family lineage with an adopted child.

  9. Japan has made quite a few big strides in terms of trying to promote intracountry adoption. However, the government still prefers intrafamily adoption, which has been common since ancient times, and even in some cases, required. (From at least Meiji period if not from Heian--Tale of Genji has adoption in it.)

    Japan has also done a good job of keeping other countries out of Japan in terms of adoption because of the blunders of Korea and China. They've encouraged intracountry adoption over the last 10 years or so, especially since birth rates are so low.

    Japan is not hurting from too many children, but from too few.

    I don't think it's really the close-knit families that makes Japan survive--remember China and Korea have similar values. It's that the way the industrialization was done and handled was a lot quieter, without war and poverty to back it up, meaning that the country didn't suffer the same issues that Korea and China did under industrialization.

    Industrialization made single mothers, but if you compound that with war recovery and a poor population that means single mothers can't support their children and those tight family bonds broke.

    Korea probably would do better once the single mother support is enacted, and they finally close their doors, if US PAPs and the government finally let them. (remember that US has forced those doors open before again and again.) Korea suffers much of the same issues as Japan--low birth rates, need to raise intracountry adoption, etc. The difference is that once those gates of adoption were open, it was hard to close them again. Japan definitely watched that mistake unfold (though they did have a hand in creating it--Japanese occupation) and said they wouldn't do it. For that I give them a round of applause.

    I sure some people want Japanese babies for the most racist reasons on Earth.

    I also should note that some slack should be cut to Japanese nationalism--it's gotten better recently. At least the media is becoming more accepting of other countries outside of Japan. I'm sad to say that the US isn't so open in the same way. I think I've counted more foreign people on J-dramas than I have Asians on popular US programs. Anyone care to account for that?

  10. Wow can't believe I found a blog that speaks truth. Every Christmas when I walk by Salvation Army bell ringers, my comment is "I gave my first born." It took years of therapy to feel whole after being told for months (while in the "unwed" mothers home) that I was "taking the easy way out", wasn't old enough (18?) or smart enough, or rich enough to be a Mom. In short, I was a sinner in need of redemption. SA made 10K off my baby in 1972.



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