Letter: Satisfactory results to private adoption

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The Independent Online
Sir: I am writing to applaud your balanced portrait of adoption practices here and in the US ('Adoption: who chooses Mum and Dad?', 23 July). As American residents in London who are also the adoptive parents of two daughters, we are intimately familiar with both the hype and the facts about legal private adoption in the US.

You have chosen to put the emphasis on the successful adoption; this is, by far, the majority of the cases. Our adoptions were very much like Frank and Molly's, and equally satisfactory. Cases such as the tragic case of Baby Clausen (where the natural parents sued to recover their adopted child) may sell more newspapers (and make good mini-series) but they are the exception, not the rule.

It takes an enormous act of courage to carry a child and then give it up for adoption. With abortion available nearly everywhere in the US, as well as here, giving up a new- born child for adoption is increasingly an act of pure love on the part of the birth parents, not an action taken by the authorities against abusive parents. When the gift is carefully considered and willingly given, it will create a family and a lifetime of happiness for some lucky couple. But if it is not willingly given, it should not be given at all. Yours sincerely,

KEN PERKOWSKI

London, W14

23 July

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