Monday, April 19, 2010

In some adoptions, love doesn't conquer all


At times, Kelly Lytle Baehr wondered how they would all get through it.  Two years ago, she and her husband adopted three boys from Ukraine — two of them 8, the other 16 — and brought them back to their home in Omaha. She knew assimilation into a family life would not be easy; all had come from troubled backgrounds, including one who had spent the first five years of his life in a prison orphanage back in Ukraine, and had a mother who drank while she was pregnant.

She was often tested by the strains of raising these three new sons. The youngest of them, Ian (born Igor) had rummaged in garbage dumps in Ukraine for toys, with hub cabs and discarded car parts his only possessions. At the Baehrs’s home in Nebraska he soon became a wild, uncontrollable kleptomaniac, she said. The other 8-year-old, Erik, struggled to attach to her — kicking, screaming, biting and yelling, “I hate you.” Only the oldest son, Viktor, seemed to welcome his new life quickly, blending easily into the family and eventually making the honor roll at his high school.

When Ms. Lytle Baehr, who is going through a divorce and has custody of her children, heard the news break two weeks ago about Torry Ann Hansen shipping her 7-year-old adopted son back to Russia on a plane, unaccompanied, with just a note to the authorities, she felt something approaching sympathy. “When it boils down to it, I’m really similar to the woman in Tennessee,” Ms. Lytle Baehr said in a telephone interview this week. “We’ve all been there.”[...]

1 comment :

  1. I suppose that those kinds of problems (traumatised children, in utero alcohol or drug addication, etc) are encountered in equal percentages in domestic and international adoptions/fostering...


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