Inter-racial Adoption Challenges


Adopting children from a different cultural background seems to be a hot topic in the adoption community.  There are many advocates basically saying a loving home is a loving home no matter who we are married to, how many kids we may have, and no matter the colour of skin. Love is Love.  

Recently I tried calling to speak with a local aboriginal public adoption agency here in Ontario.  I have a native background a few generations back as my grandfather is native but we really didn’t have information and he’s now passed away.  I really loved the idea of adopting a native child that needed a home which in return would allow us to learn about our background in depth.  When I called the office, they said if we didn’t have papers to show proof of our heritage that we could not be considered for adoption within their agency.  

So I have learned that in Canada, inter-racial adoption is frowned upon in almost all public agencies. Inter-racial adoption is on the rise in North America, but I was shocked to learn that this wasn’t as widely accepted here in Ontario. 

What are the concerns??? 

Family Acceptance – There is an era where many were raised to never racial mix.  You need to give family members time to process adoption in general and also to understand and consider a different race.  Kids are quite curious and have questions of why Auntie A has a son but his skin colour doesn’t match  Auntie A?

Standing Out – When you are a transracial family, you tend to stand out in the crowd.  Sometimes the adopted child will feel resentful that they don’t “Match” their family and feel awkward about their situation.  Some people may even make comments as this is a topic that everyone in the world doesn’t always agree with.  This is where as a family, you need to make it a priority for the child to have pride with their heritage and encourage them.

Creates and Inspires – A family that adopts transracial tend to learn and understand and take the opportunity to learn about many different cultures.  It’s a great learning experience.

Adoption is always going to have it’s struggles.  An adopted child is going to likely have resentment, whether they are in a home that happens to be all the same race.  There is always the curiosity of wanting to see if you share the same facial expressions, if they have the same eyes and hair.  Even with the racial adoption, there will still be some family members that won’t fully accept adoption.  I still hear comments of “so John is yours?”  My reply is, “no, they are both mine.”  

For me love is love.  The race, same sex couple, or financial wealth should not matter when it comes to adoption.  It’s 2017 and there is not one family that would not struggle with raising children in some shape or way.  Every family has their issues, and it’s how they choose to deal with the issue that ultimately matters.  Public adoption agencies need to change their mentality of inter-racial adoptions and look at what really matters.  It’s ok to voice the concern, and educate others on how to deal with both the pros and cons, but as a society we need to get these children in loving homes.

Love is love. 



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