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Successful Families

Children are waiting for forever families...

Karen U., an adoptive parent in California

I adopted my son 2 weeks before his 2nd birthday in 1982. Many people from across the country had applied to adopt him, I was the only single applicant. The professionals had tested him and said he would be "moderately-severly retarded" in addition to his cerebral palsy. When I went to meet him, I found a very sparkly, bubbly cognitive boy who I really felt I would enjoy parenting. My background was working with special needs children and I had worked in many institutions where kids with special needs were provided with minimal custodial care. I sensed so much wasted potential in the kids I worked with.

I did adopt my son and though there were/are many challenges, the rewards have been many! He was able to prove everyone wrong, he is far from "retarded". All his school classes have been regular classes and he has been on the honor roll for his entire school experience. My son, now 19, has been a joy. Last week I watched my son drive his power wheelchair across the stage to receive his high school diploma as his fellow students and the crowd cheered for him. He graduated with a 3.9 gpa and plans to attend a local college and then transfer to U.C. Berkeley to major in journalism.

Adoption has made a big difference in my life, one of my only regrets is that due to my age and certain health issues, I can't do it again. There are so many children out there waiting for forever families. So if you are considering adopting, hang in there. At times the process takes a lot out of you and it seems that you can't go on, but press on. The family love and guidance you provide for a child in need will change their life, your life, and make the world a better place for us all.

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