The question “Are those kids yours?” has a familiar ring to parents who have adopted children from South Korea, India, Colombia, the Philippines, and other countries. As natural and normal as it feels to them to be together, such families are often asked to explain their obvious difference. In rich personal stories drawn from her own experience as the mother of two Korean-born daughters and from interviews with other parents and with adopted children from six to thirty, Cheri Register both affirms the normality of internationally adoptive families and highlights the special challenges they do indeed face.
The book addresses many central questions about international adoption: why children are in need of adoption outside the country of their birth, why parents choose to adopt from other countries, and how parents and children of very different origins become a “real” family.
International adoption is a controversial matter in countries from which children are coming to the United States, but adoptive families have had little voice as yet in the debate. With honest, thoughtful analysis honed by personal experience, Register addresses the ethical issues inevitably raised by adoption across lines of culture, race, and social class: Are parents in the wealthier nations entitled to raise children left homeless in other parts of the world by poverty or social stigma? Is placement in another country an appropriate solution for children whose parents cannot raise them?
Insightful, comprehensive, and eloquent, Are Those Kids Yours? is a unique resource for parents raising internationally adopted children and for those who are contemplating intercountry adoption as well as for the children as they grow up, their extended families and friends, and adoption and mental health professionals.
Cheri Register, Ph.D., lives in Minneapolis with her two Korean-born daughters, Grace and Maria. A writer, lecturer, and educational consultant, she is the author of Living with Chronic Illness: Days of Patience and Passion.