Look through the Lens: In Response to Last Week’s 7 More Facts About Adoption in Arkansas

I know that if you really wanted a heavy dose of strangely strong-willed opinion, you would have kept scrolling through your Facebook feed. I’m not here to add to the noise. What I am here to do is to draw a few conclusions from last week’s 7 facts about adoption in Arkansas.

The facts were as follows:

Here are a few things to think about.

99% of adopted children ages 5 and older know they were adopted, it’s also safe to assume that 99% of adoptive parents did not decide to tell them by age 5. Our conclusion is that kids figure it out. They will. And when they do, the fact that it was hidden from them will make them think of adoption as shameful. So, we suggest openness about adoption as early as possible. Even though it might be frightening to bring up, “we chose you” is not a sad thing to hear so say it early and say it often.

9 out of 10 children diagnosed with downs syndrome in the womb, will not make it to the crib. That is absolutely heartbreaking and it shows an ugly truth about the condition of our hearts and our understanding of special needs. For expectant parents that feel unprepared to care for a child with special needs, there are families waiting in line to adopt. Life is always a better choice.

There is a great need for families to adopt children of any age through the state as 238 children aged out of Arkansas foster care in 2012. The greatest need is for children over the age of 4.

There were 676 adoptions through the foster care system in Arkansas in 2012. Compare that to the 503 towns in the state. Only just above a family per town adopted through the state in 2012.