I read a horrible story this morning about this Tennessee woman who adopted a 7 year old boy from Russia, decided he was “mentally unstable” and gave him a one way ticket back to Moscow! Literally! I couldn’t believe it! Apparently she paid $200 for someone to meet him at the airport and take him to the Ministry of Education with a letter saying that “After giving my best to this child, I am sorry to say that for the safety of my family, friends and myself, I no longer wish to parent this child. As he is a Russian National, I am returning him to your guardianship and would like the adoption disannulled.”
This woman should never have been allowed to adopt if she doesn’t understand that children aren’t merchandise. You can’t just “return” them because you’re unhappy. You adopted a 7 year old who had been taken away from an unfit alcoholic mother, from a country which institutionalizes orphans (leading to a higher number behavioral issues) and you didn’t think there would be any lingering issues? How stupid are you??? Besides, witnesses on the plane said that the boy was active and a little anxious (who wouldn’t be? his adopted mother just abandoned him) but seemed normal. Even if he was making the threats and had behavioral problems as claimed, that doesn’t mean you get to just ship him back! If you give birth to a child you run the risk of them having the same issues, but that doesn’t mean you can just cast them aside with no consequences, so why should an adopted child be any different?
But as horrible as all this is, I think Russia’s reaction is a little…well…over-reactive. They’ve called for a halt on all adoptions of Russian children by American families. President Medvedev said he was very concerned and upset by how Russian children were treated in America. About 1,600 Russian children were adopted by Americans last year, down from a high of almost 6,000 in 2004; 15 of those children have been murdered since the early 1990s. While that’s 15 too many, it’s not exactly a large percentage….more American children are probably killed by their parents than that….