Today’s adoptive families come from all backgrounds, cultures, and races, and are open to adopting children of any race, not just their own.
Federal law prohibits public agencies from denying or delaying adoption solely based on race, and for private adoption agencies such as Lifetime, birth mothers are the ones who ultimately choose the adoptive family for their little one—sometimes race is part of that consideration, and other times it is not.
When adopting through Lifetime, birth mothers will be able to state their preference for race, just as they are able to state preference for gender, religion, and other traits and characteristics. Lifetime has many African American or bi-racial birthmothers searching for adoptive parents for their little ones, and fully supports birth mothers and adoptive families in their decision to pursue either same race or interracial adoption.
If you are considering adopting a child of a different race, one of the most important things you can do is to educate yourself on the history and practical implications of multiracial adoption. Interracial adoptions make up 21% of all private adoptions in the US, so your choice is not unique. Lifetime will be able to answer many of your questions if interracial adoption is of interest to you, as well as point you towards further avenues of education and research.
Both African American families and those interested in interracial placement (or who have no preference) should visit Lifetime’s list of birth mothers. There they will find a snapshot of the birth mothers and what they are looking for in an adoptive family, including race, and whether the mother prefers a same-race adoption or has no preference. This will give you a good idea of the range of racial preferences birth mothers hold, and allow you to see that race is but one of many factors of importance to birth mothers.
While the number of African American birth mothers fluctuates, there is always a need for African American couples interested in adopting: Black parents account for 19% of children adopted privately in the US. Although this is not a small number, it does demonstrate that African American families are in high demand for those birth moms who state a racial preference for a black family.
That said, as you begin your adoption journey, keep in mind that there is really no such thing as a true “African American adoption.” Instead, birth mothers want the very best home for their children, and the “very best” includes a wide variety of factors of which race is but one.
Founder of Lifetime Adoption, adoptive mom, adoption expert, and Certified Open Adoption Practitioner (C.O.A.P).
Since 1986, adoption expert Mardie Caldwell has been dedicated to bringing couples and birth parents together in order to fulfill their dreams.
“Many years ago, I was also searching for a child to adopt. We didn’t know where or how to get started. Through research, determination, and a prayer, our dream of a family became reality. I started with a plan, a notebook, assistance from a caring adoption consultant and a lot of hard work; this was my family I was building. We had a few heartaches along the way, but the pain of not having children was worse!
Within weeks we had three different birth mothers choose us. We were overwhelmed and delighted. Many unsettling events would take place before our adoption would be finalized, many months later. Little did I know that God was training and aligning me for the adoption work I now do today. It is my goal to share with our families the methods and plans which succeed and do not succeed. I believe adoption should be affordable and can be a wonderful “pregnancy” for the adoptive couple.
I have also been on both sides of infertility with the loss of seven pregnancies and then conceiving by new technology, giving birth to a healthy daughter. I have experienced first-hand the emotional pain of infertility and believe my experience allows me to serve your needs better.
It is my hope that for you, the prospective parents, your desire for a child will be fulfilled soon.”