Single Parent Adoption: Why The Discrimination Is Unfair
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Single Parent Adoption: Why the Discrimination is Unfair
As an increasing number of children are living in foster care, on the streets, and waiting at childcare agencies, an increasing number of unmarried adults are choosing to become parents through adoption. Though single parents have the potential to give otherwise parentless children the nurturing they need and fulfill their personal desire to share with a family, they still face many difficulties and discrimination in applying for adoption. (Single Adoptive Parents)

Singles looking to adopt face many obstacles. Thirty years ago single-parent adoption simply wasnt done in many places. Certain states even had laws against it. (Liptak 78) The traditional view of parenting that requires a mother and a father for healthy growth and development of the child may seem unfair to many singles, and is also unfair to some children for whom this ideal may not be possible. Today, adoption agencies handle single applicants in a variety of ways. They may still simply deny the applicant immediately, or they may overlook the application while children are placed with couples, request a more rigorous home study than usual, or end up offering the applicant “special needs” children who may be older, have disabilities, or be interracial. Family and friends may also provide hurdles. They may not understand why a person would want to take on the responsibility of parenting without a partner. (Prowler) By demonstrating to agencies, family, and friends that they have thought their decision through and are stable, and by being confident and persistent, singles looking to adopt can achieve their goals. (Gardner)

The simple fact that there are kids without parents and that there are single people willing to adopt is the first good reason to let down the barriers of discrimination to single parents. With increasing numbers of children in foster care needing adoption services, single parents are stepping in to provide homes. Single parents have made up a third of adoptions from foster care in the past and their numbers are rising. (Single Adoptive Parents) Children need love, nurturing, and stability to be well-balanced, productive adults and the desire to provide these things is what drives singles and couples alike to adopt children. Also alike is the natural ability to parent. Many single people have the talent and skills to raise children; they simply dont have a spouse. (Prowler)

While it is arguable that “two parents are better than one,” children show that they can thrive in all different kinds of family structures. As long as there is love, adequate supervision, structure, and consistency a child raised by a single parent can grow to be just as successful and healthy as any other. Friends, relatives, money and sheer effort can help substitute for the missing spouse. (Kantrowitz and Wingert) Generally, singles looking to adopt have all these things. They are well educated and financially stable (Austin), have high levels of emotional maturity and a high capacity for frustration, and are independent, but connected to a support network of family and friends. (Single Adoptive Parents) The supportive network of family and friends can provide the opposite gender role model needed for a childs healthy psychological development and to calm the instinctive desire of a two-parent ideal. (Kantrowitz and Wingert)

There is even evidence to suggest that children in single-parent homes may be better off than many raised by two parents. Researchers Groze and Rosenthal conducted a study that compared the responses of adoptive parents in the Midwest. In their comparison of two-parent homes to single-parent homes, they found that children in single-parent families experienced fewer problems, and that the single-parent families were more likely to evaluate the adoptions impact as being very positive. (Single Adoptive Parents)

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Single Parent Adoption And Increasing Number Of Children. (April 2, 2021). Retrieved from