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Celebrity Adoptions: Domestic vs. International

Updated on February 1, 2014

After reading about the famous Jennifer (JWOWW) Farley’s plan to adopt a child from Chile or Spain it made me ask myself a question. Why do so many celebrities overlook American children when it comes to adoption? Is it because there is an idea that because these kids come from unfortunate circumstances, that they are juvenile delinquents – that couldn’t be farther from the truth, they are just as viable as any other child?

Why don’t they adopt babies from their own country? Are they doing it just to look good – as a public relations ploy? How come the stars get to cut in the front of the line, so to speak, when countless hopeful adoptive parents must wait, and wait, for their chances? Of course there’s that fear for celebrities the birth parents will come back and protest in a domestic adoption, but even stars such as Madonna found out the hard way with her son, who was adopted from Malawi when his father protested the adoption.

The misconceptions about the well-being of the children, and the time and cost involved in domestic adoptions, may lead prospective parents to look overseas first, but according to Adoptive Families Magazine, the estimated cost to adopt a child in China is $20,000 - $25,000. The estimated cost for Guatemalan adoption is $25,000 - $30,000, and a Russian child is estimated at $30,000 - $40,000. According to the National Council for adoption, domestic costs range from $8,000 - $40,000, so adopting overseas has no real cost benefit. As far as the comparative speed and expediency of celebrity adoptions – it’s a money issue more than anything else. Stars are usually at a huge economic advantage.

It’s not that we don’t understand the conditions a lot of these oversea children are living in. Some are held up in warehouses, infected with diseases, starved, or even dying, but so are the American children that anxiously wait to be loved and cared for.

There’s no denying the stars’ actions are influencing others. In fact, the popularity of adoption among celebrities has been credited with helping to broaden the general public’s definition of what constitutes a desirable adoption. It seems as though it’s trend setting for celebrities, an exotic accessory or novelty item, rather than a child. It’s the hip thing to walk around with an international child, but truth be told, we’ve got a serious adoption problem in this country.

One hears rumors about certain actresses who’ve sought to adopt because they want to avoid the toll pregnancy takes on a woman’s body – but no one’s about to admit that publicly. As for the well being of American kids versus their foreign counter parts, again, why don’t they adopt kids from their own country? America needs all the help it can get. Why help another country before your own?

If you were thinking about adopting, which would you choose?

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    • jandee profile image

      jandee 4 years ago from Liverpool.U.K

      Hello NRCollins,

      a nice write. I am always upset about a child being taken out of it's culture.

      best from jandee

    • NRCollins profile image

      NRCollins 4 years ago

      Hey Alecia! Thanks for the comment on my article. Every day I see something related to this subject, which is why I finally wrote about it. I was going to comment on the celebrities that did in fact have domestic adoptions, but for this article I just wanted to concentrate on the ones that went internationally. It seems like the majority of the stars' choose international adoptions over domestic.

    • Alecia Murphy profile image

      Alecia Murphy 4 years ago from Wilmington, North Carolina

      This subject comes up often between my mom and I. While I understand that is easier to adopt being single or what not, I think most of it is to avoid certain bureaucratic blocks in place in the states. But if more celebs did adopt from the states, I think it would have a trickle down effect for other families as well in getting the laws changed and making the process much easier.

      Sandra Bullock adopted her son from New Orleans with no problem and she was in the middle of a contentious divorce, so I really don't understand the idea of going overseas to idea just to say you adopted a child when you can do it in your own backyard.

      Great hub on a very intriguing issue.