Save International Adoption

I cried in the dentist chair today.  Not because of anything the hygienist was doing, but because of the International Adoption Crisis that is happening right now. 

Our family has worked so hard to raise over $20,000, and now our adoption and many others are in jeopardy.  It’s a heartbreaking and infuriating problem that not many people know about.  Our Department of State is implementing new regulations that will raise already high costs to astronomical levels, and will ultimately close many if not all international adoption programs in the United States.  

Our agency has been denied accreditation renewal, though they have done EVERYTHING necessary to renew it.  Now, the entire Japan program is on hold because our State Department has demanded that an independent Japanese lawyer review the adoption laws in Japan.  This makes no sense to me.  Please do some research. What the State Department is doing is NOT RIGHT. It is not in the best interests of the children or the families. I want to make it clear that our agency has done nothing wrong.

Meanwhile, adoptions that were in process, families who have already spent thousands of dollars, are all waiting for some kind of resolution.  Our agency has lawyers, other agencies, families, and even the former accreditation agency fighting for them.  

One family, the Tutterrows from Georgia, raised all their money, filled out all of their paperwork, and finished the entire adoption process to bring home the biological sibling of their little girl from Japan, travelled to pick her up and were told they couldn’t bring her home because of these new policies.  They have been stuck in Japan for over two weeks, and have been told it won’t be resolved until sometime after April 25. Please check out their story at the link provided.  

In the midst of this, my dad went to a routine cardiologist check up and was sent straight to the hospital for an angiogram.  He had one stent put in that day and then two more the next week. When I think about what could have happened, I am just sick. Attacked on every front. 

I have been walking around in a daze for the last week.  I feel like I shouldn’t be out in public in my state.  I might suddenly say something desperate, and everyone will stare at me in concern.  

I am angry and sad and confused about this mess.  Please look up articles about what is going on with the State Department right now, and their reasons.  Then please look up the statistics for children who spend their entire childhoods in institutions.  This is a tragedy.  

My friend, Amanda, who is adopting from the same country through the same agency as we are, expressed my feelings exactly. She said, “I don’t want to hear that maybe Japan is not where our baby is…Our hearts are there.  God led us there.  We are ready to fight for our babies.  You wouldn’t tell a woman that is 20+ weeks pregnant that you can just have another one if something happens, or maybe God doesn’t want you to have this baby.  No one gets it, but these babies are already in our hearts, we love them already and have started preparing for them.”

I’ve been told that we should just “be grateful for the children we have.”  As if my desire to give a home to an orphan somehow means I do not value my children. When we adopted the first time, I had a few people suggest that I was having a baby “the easy way.” Honestly, despite having 4 high-risk, complicated pregnancies, premature labor and ultimately premature births, having babies biologically was far easier than adoption has been for us.  I had let myself imagine holding this baby in my arms, picked out names, and collected baby items. Just before this mess started, I had finally said out loud, “we’re going to get our baby.” 

We are not giving up, though.  We will continue to fundraise, and to prepare for this baby that we believe is waiting for us.  We are asking for your prayers and for your willingness to share this problem.  If you have donated items or money to us, or helped us in any other way, you are invested in this adoption, too. What the State Department is doing needs to be exposed, and our representatives need to hear our voices. Save International Adoption. 

My name is Pam Ogden, and I’m a wife, mom, homeschool teacher, blogger, and an author. I am passionate about my faith, family and adoption. My blog is the story of our previous and current adoption, and how our family is growing physically and spiritually.


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