Had she really been right in the resistance which had cost her so much pain six years ago, and again four years ago--the resistance to her husband's wish that they should adopt a child?
To adopt a child, because children of your own had been denied you, was to try and choose your lot in spite of Providence: the adopted child, she was convinced, would never turn out well, and would be a curse to those who had wilfully and rebelliously sought what it was clear that, for some high reason, they were better without.
John Pendleton, wealthy, independent, morose, reputed to be miserly and supremely selfish, to adopt a
little boy--and such a little boy?
I think, then, that we ought to adopt a
material excellent in its way and of low price, such as cast iron.
This principle was sufficient thenceforward to rid me of all those repentings and pangs of remorse that usually disturb the consciences of such feeble and uncertain minds as, destitute of any clear and determinate principle of choice, allow themselves one day to adopt a
course of action as the best, which they abandon the next, as the opposite.
President," he said, in a clear voice, "but I see you are going to adopt a
course of questions through which I cannot follow you.
Even so, many states allow gays to adopt as
individuals and many--including California, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and Vermont--now allow joint adoptions by same-sex couples.
Many parents resented professionals who treated applications to adopt as cries for help disguised as generous acts.
"Over and over again they have placed the observance of rigid rules above common sense and the welfare of children in their care," explained a 1950 article, "Why You Can't Adopt a Baby." (186) If couples, frustrated to the point of desperation by red tape, resorted to independent placement, who could really blame them?
For a description on one (unnamed) agency that did operate on the consumer model, complete with display room, see Anonymous, "We Adopt a Child," Atlantic Monthly 165 (March 1940); 346-323.
Maisel, "Why You Can't Adopt a Baby," Woman's Home Companion, March 1950, 31.
They also wanted an infant (most foster care children are older) and decided it would be easier for one of them-Cuff-to adopt as a single mother.
In late October a New Jersey judge ruled that two gay men could adopt a 2-year-old boy who had been in their care as a foster child since he was 3 months old -- despite a state law prohibiting joint adoptions by unmarried couples.
Gay couples have four basic routes they can follow in their attempts to adopt a child unrelated to either partner (adopting a partner's biological child -- called "second-parent adoptions" -- is another matter entirely).
Though Doug Robinson considers the mid'80s, when he adopted his first child, a comparatively backward era, as a professional African-American man seeking to adopt a minority youngster, he was welcomed with open arms.