Conversing about the racial hierarchy that currently exists and how that plays into who is capable of adopting, as well as who is needing to be adopted is a common discussion in our household. Speaking about the ways in which systemic racism continues to permeate our lives as an interracial couple is an ever present dialogue. In no way do I align with the Black Social Workers Association statement that black children in white homes is a form of cultural genocide (1984) as I feel that adoption is a necessary solution to an unfortunate need, and trans-racial adoption is a beautiful remedy. But why does transracial adoption always look so one sided? White parents and children of color. I know the answer has to do with systemic racism, this is not news to me. But, are we ready to move forward with an ever pressing need?
It is my belief that if we had more options of prospective adoptive parents of color we may enjoy a more positive multiracial and/or “post-racial” America. I’d also love to see the current definition of the term transracial adoption broadened to include transracial adoptive families where the parents are Black.
I’ve read countless books, blogs and articles with a title similar to “A White Mom Wonders If Her Brown Babies Will Be Black Enough” or “6 Things White Parents Can Do To Raise Socially Conscious Children” and while I’m sure these articles are helpful and provide a sense of camaraderie between white parents who are experiencing similar parenting challenges I wonder if there will ever be a market for a “How a Black Mom Talks To Her White Daughter” article or “10 Tips Every Black Mom Should Know When Taking Her White Child to The Vanilla Suburbs” blog post? Doubtful… Seriously though, who better to parent the woes brought up within articles like these than a strong, capable, resourceful, open and honest black parent?
I will again state my disclaimer that I know of countless white parents who are parenting their children of color superbly well, and enter in to these discussions with their children and others in a beautiful way – this is not my concerned line of thinking here. My desire is to find out what it would take to balance the scales in terms of the numbers of adoptive parents of color and White parents adopting trans-racially. Can we put apathy into action and step up where we are needed?
Black folks – Is it insulting to think about raising a white child?
White adoptive parents – How might you handle this question from your child?