Ok! Elections are over, and so let’s get back to what we do here at Land of Gazillion Adoptees.
I am a huge fan of the Minnesota adoption community, especially the adoptee community here. However, the recent news about the couple in Mankato, MN is a good reminder that all is not well in our lovely state. From The New York Times:
A Minnesota couple are accused of starving their 8-year-old adopted son, feeding him only liquid and putting an alarm on his door so he would not steal food, according to criminal charges that say the boy was so malnourished his bones protruded and he weighed as much as a child half his age…
He weighed just 34.8 pounds and was 3 feet, 5 inches tall — about the weight of an average 4-year-old when measured on standard growth charts. The complaint said the boy was “very thin, his bones were protruding, and his abdomen was distended.”
If asked, I am 100% certain that numerous Minnesota adoption agency types and adoption advocates will say that this case is an isolated one. Domestic and international adoptees do great in the Land of 10,000 Lakes; we shouldn’t focus on the “bad apples.” Rather, we should figure out ways to increase the number of adoptions because “millions” of the world’s children need permanent, loving homes.
I agree that many adoptees are living good lives in MN, but there are many who are not and this fact requires our attention. We – members of the MN adoption community – have a duty to protect this 8-year-old boy; his story isn’t the first or the last. We have a duty to the foster care children and teens who somehow end up homeless. We have a duty to the internationally adopted children who somehow end up in the foster care system. We have a duty to the adoptees who struggle for years because they don’t have access to mental health services that understands them. If Minnesota is indeed a leader in the adoption community, we have a duty to start living up to our reputation…together.