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Is There A Davion Henry In Your Future?
a blog by Julie Monacelli, November 15, 2013
Davion Henry, a 15 year old boy from Florida, recently made headlines when he walked into his church and asked if anyone among them would be his family. His plea worked, and thousands of people across the country looked into adopting him. But what about other older kids that don’t make national news?
I have a friend who recently chose to adopt an older child. I have to admit, I was surprised by his decision. It seemed to me that older children come with a history that can’t be undone. In his case, his son came from Kansas, home to over 900 children currently available for adoption through the foster system. Even more are entering the system at an alarming rate, as recently as June 2013 Kansas alone reported over 5,500 children in foster care. News stories state this is a result of the poor economy and increased parental drug use rendering biological parents unable to care for children.
On my friend's Facebook page he shows beautiful pictures with his handsome new son. You can tell the boy has found his forever father. Their new family hasn’t been without challenges though. He believes his son was the victim of a broken system, one that allowed greater compensation for caretakers parallel to the number of diagnoses he had. As a result, children may seem less attractive to prospective parents concerned they may be unable to handle issues such as attention deficit disorder (ADD), hyperactivity (ADHD) or post-traumatic stress disorder. Believe me, as the mother of a child with ADD, I am not dismissing this diagnosis. I am saying that it could be an easy label to place on a child, as with many others.
I don’t know if I could ever step into the role of an adoptive single parent to an older child, but after seeing my friend successfully parent I think it is worth consideration. Is there a Davion Henry in your future?