Monday, March 7, 2011

A Guide to Adoption: Don't Fuck Up.

Disclaimer : Obviously, all children are a gift from God. This article is not implying that any baby is better than another, even though some clearly are.

Adoption is hot shit right now, there's no denying that.  First came Kabbalah, then came Ugg boots and finally the newest, hottest Hollywood trend is adoption.  Well, you scoff, Uggs are no longer "in" and everyone thinks Esther is fuckin' nuts, adoption must be on the way out, right? Wrong.  I think we can all take a big breath in, sigh it the fuck out, and thank the Jolie-Pitts for making us feel like ingrates for wanting to have children the old-fashioned way: on accident.

So you want a Chinese baby? We don't blame you. Asian babies are one of the hottest trends of all time but there a few important things to remember. Babies are not like dogs; once they are no longer little and cute it is, unfortunately, not appropriate to stick them in the backyard.  Also, like pets, you can't just give them to your parents once you realize you are shitty at taking care of things*.  This makes it very important to ensure you get the right baby the first time around. Don't make a snap decision when it comes to picking a baby. Stick to our rules and you won't go wrong.

*Unless you are Mexican**

**Though we can't imagine Mexicans adopting, they seem to have the whole "procreation" thing down

(Mormons, sister wives and bazillions of children [also Catholics] are to be covered at a later date)First, it's important to get a general idea of the baby's temperment. If there is a parent on site when you go baby shopping, its best to get a look at them. Make sure they aren't too high strung or aggressive. Check for signs of meth abuse or heroin habits (arm tracks).  If possible, look inside their mouths, up their nostrils and in their ears.  This goes for both mom AND dad.  A clean bill of health from one, if not both, parents is ideal. Any orphanage that knows what it's doing has had their parents tested for genetic problems like sickle cell, color blindness or male-pattern baldness. Don't get your hopes up on the first baby you want. If these tests on the parents and child haven't been done, move on. The right baby is still out there.

Once you've either moved onto the next kid or luckily picked one out of the first litter, it's important to observe your potential new family member with the other children. You want a child that is social with others but is interested in you too. Definitely skip the one cowering in the corner. You're adopting a baby, you are going to be a hero even if you get the best one. Why torture yourself by getting one that is going to be even more work?  The last thing you need is some freak loner asshole baby that doesn't even share your own freak loner asshole genes.  It's absolutely necessary to take a look at several children. Check their eyes and teeth***. You don't want to see any discharge coming from their eyes and straight, healthy teeth are a must. Why set your self up to have to pay for braces? Its also important to test them for lameness. Put them on a kid leash and jog about 50 feet, turn around and jog back.  Notice the baby's gait.   It is helpful to bring an assistant when considering bringing a new child into your life. This will allow you to watch when they jog your potential child.  Also, if at all possible, set up a small obstacle courst of legos or other infant-safe toys to test the baby's jumping ability.  Children are absolutely show ponies.  Imagine the honor your adopted kid could bring your family if they made an appearance on "Toddlers and Tiaras".

***if you've ever watched a dog show, you understand the importance here

It is also a good idea to discuss with your spouse/same sex companion/lover/self what lies (if any) you are going to tell your new child about their adoption.  Keep in mind the racial makeup.  If you want an Asian baby as a white lady, be prepared to twist up a tale of a tryst in Japan with a model. (It always helps to bring in the idea of models.)  Or, you can tell them the truth later in life and risk them hating you then, inversely you can tell them as soon as they can comprehend shit.  As non-parents and non-adopters, we're not quite sure when this is, but are confident you'll figure it out. Our best guess is when the kid starts saying "No!" to everything.

With these few simple steps, the chances of you regretting this decision are significantly decreased. However, you probably will anyway. Just know though, if you
follow these rules, you won't hate your life as much.
Finally, consider what you want in a baby. When you have your own biological children, you can't pick out what hobbies they will be good at or even like. Take advantage of this unique opportunity. Do you want your child to do gymnastics? Pick a little one with broad shoulders.  Dreams of cheering on your son in the Olympics/any sport?  Go black.  It is a fact that white men can't jump.  It's also helpful to bring a clicker, generally used for animal training purposes, to test the children's willingness to learn.

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