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Adoptive parents give back daughter

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  • Sunny Jo
    Adoptive parents give back daughter By Anita Doberman: Local columnist January 4 2008 5:55 PM Hard to believe, but a Dutch couple returned their adopted Korean
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 5 5:29 AM
      Adoptive parents give back daughter
      By Anita Doberman: Local columnist
      January 4 2008 5:55 PM
      Hard to believe, but a Dutch couple returned their adopted Korean
      daughter after seven years. The parents had adopted the little girl
      from South Korea when she was 4 months old.

      Reports of how the situation unfolded were contradictory but it
      appears that the girl was given over to the care of the Social
      Welfare Department in Hong Kong, where the man is a diplomat, because
      they could no longer care for her. The couple explained that the girl
      was emotionally unresponsive and all attempts at therapy had failed.

      As an adoptive parent, really as just a parent, I can't justify this
      couples' behavior under any circumstance. I don't think these people
      are monsters, though the result of their action is monstrous because
      they chose to follow their selfish and unloving side instead of
      choosing to tough it out and love their daughter no matter what.
      Sadly, the impact on this child will be devastating.

      Perhaps they had good intentions when they adopted, most likely they
      did, but something went wrong along the way. These parents were
      probably unprepared to deal with some difficult aspects of adoption.
      It's easy to imagine only the best of a new family member, just as we
      do with our biological children. No one envisions mediocrity, let
      alone problems. I have imagined perfect things in the past only to
      discover the road to family or marital bliss requires lots of hard
      work and an effort to practice unconditional love.

      Anyone can have unrealistic expectation, not just adoptive parents,
      or parents in general. It's easier to envision perfect little kids
      who excel in everything, or a flawless husband, an exciting job, but
      most of the times these things require hard work.

      From personal experience I can say that adoption can be challenging.
      But so can a biological child who has issues, or problems in marriage
      or work related difficulties. When our adopted son Matteo started
      having health issues we had to consult several specialists and it was
      hard for him to be around his sisters, it became challenging. This
      doesn't mean that my husband or I ever had any second thoughts about
      the adoption or that we considered Matteo any different than our
      biological children. My husband's intense deployments have been
      difficult for our family, but this hasn't meant that my husband has
      considered leaving the military or that I have told him that I wanted
      to "exchange" him after many years of marriage.

      Like adoption, a friendship, a marriage, any other relationship, even
      military lifestyle, it's easy to be a parent, a spouse, a great
      friend when things are going well. But it's much harder to be those
      things when the going gets rough. There's a reason we say that
      character is revealed by trying times.

      I hope this girl can find a loving family who can help her overcome
      her traumatic loss and that all of us no matter in what area of life
      we are struggling can continue to renew our love for children and
      families even when it's tough.

      Anita Doberman is a freelance writer, mother of five and wife of an
      Air Force pilot stationed at Hurlburt AFB in Florida. The family
      expects to be moving to Cannon Air Force Base in the next year.
      Contact her at:

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