American black babies being adopted outside the U.S.

So I read another article that just made my jaw drop. It said that while international adoptions are becoming more difficult, and thus are dropping in numbers, would-be parents from other countries are finding it fairly easy to adopt babies from here in the U.S. — and many of those are black babies, because there are more of them in the “waiting child” category.

Yikes. The article actually reminds readers that racial prejudice is still an issue here in the U.S. and that some black birth parents hope that by letting foreigners adopt their babies, that their children might face fewer racial issues in other countries, such as the Netherlands.

Here I am the first time I met my gorgeous baby Charlotte, the day after her birth.
Here I am the first time I met my gorgeous baby Charlotte, the day after her birth.

As the wife of an Asian man and the mother of three biological children who are mixed-race (Caucasian and Filipino) and one adopted black daughter, I am certainly sensitive to racial issues. Most of the time, however, since I personally just don’t see any difference in who people truly ARE at their core regardless of what they might look like on the outside (and I suppose this also extends to disabilities, since one daughter has Down syndrome…), I tend to not think about racial issues too much. I’m not saying I’m being insensitive; I guess I just don’t think about it frequently because of my attitude about people and race.

But this article, though a bit shocking, isn’t a complete surprise; when we adopted our daughter, we heard that some other prospective parents weren’t interested in adopting a baby who didn’t share their race (i.e., since many were white, they wanted a white baby). And I knew there were some agencies and services out there that specifically work on finding homes for black or mixed-race babies (in addition to children with special needs), because they’re harder to place.

Again, as with so many issues today, even though we’ve come a long way as a country when it comes to race, we’re not color blind yet. And don’t even get me started on the hateful comments some people made about one of Mitt Romney’s sons adopting a black baby (as if it were for political purposes!). I just wish that prejudice and all the assorted other hatefulness out there didn’t have to affect babies.

Author: Cathy Carmode Lim

I'm a copy editor, writer, and book reviewer with three decades of experience. My book review website is I'm a mom of four and grandma of three.

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