It's already been a month since we, at Gruun, started distributing our messages in English. This is to share some topic about the happiness of children living abroad detached far from their parents. The other day, we got some good information provided to us by Ms. Linda Rahbek in Oslo, Noway. She quoted...(verbatim)
"I know that there are quite many couples that are unable to become pregnant themselves, and therefore want to adopt"....
In fact, Norway is one of the active nations in international adoption. Norway and Sweden are the top two countires competing each other for 1st or 2nd place in ratio of adopting per population.
In this connection, I hastened to begin conducting a survey about the current adopting circumstances in countries of Northern Europe after I obtained the related monograph from Prof. Deguchi of Tottori University who is well at home in this particular field. With permission from the Prof. himself, we would like to share it with you.
Prof. Deguchi's monograph titled "International foster-children became of foster-parents in turn" begins like this. "
Among Scandinavian countries, the concept of adopting children internationally has been commonly accepted as one of the choice among couples in infertility. Countries of birth of those foster children extend from Asia, Africa and South Africa, and the international foster children may be of some cross-racial breed already, thus it's obvious to our eyes, there is no biological and genetic bonding can be seen among the foster-parents/children relationship. Among them, the parent/child's bonding is more importantly valued at the site of their daily life/activities rather than the heridity and/or kinship."
I tried to toss my question to Prof. Degichi as to why they don't choose children domestically available? I got his answer as follows.
" As you might conjecture, domestic availability of foster children is much less in number. Abortion is available, and the systematic help is also well organized for single mothers. Domestic children who need custody may be taken care as foster children, however, it is not automatic. As in Sweden, however, the parental legal right is well considered, and biological parents can say "no" to the adoption even if so-called would-be foster parents like to pick up one(s) they like.
That's it, no more. It is basically same as in Japan that the right of the biological parents is respected. The difference is that in Japan they don't pursue any further. They stop there. Not only in Norway, but also in other Northern European countries, many couples tend to gear shifting their eyes toward the international adoption.
One of the fundamental reasons in this tendency may stem from a different set of people's individual perspective toward the parent/child's bonding between Japan and Northern European countries.
In monograph " International foster children in Sweden: The potentiality and the related problems" A Swedish lady speaks and quotes hereunder about the situation in Japan. She works in Tokyo after her accommodation in a Korean infant-facility taken as a foster-child.
"It's difficult to be adpoted in Japan. Why? Japanese people are nationaliastic...(some paragraphs omitted) Japanese should be more open-minded toward people in the different racial mix. Furthermore, there are lots of Japanese accommodated there at the facility, but ordinary Japanese do not even realize the fact"...
She feels Japanese are nationalistic and are overly obsessed with the kinship.
In the last few paragraphs of "International foster-children became of foster-parents in turn", Prof. Deguchi further stated as follows. "One idea has been globarized i.e.the notion that parent/child's bonding or relationship attributes only to the biological and/or genetically bound connection, thereby, the fact of which cannot be erased. This concept may have been spurred by legalizing activities such as children's right/treaty by United Nation and/or international adoption system being excercised by Hague Convention, and furthermore by some trend also legalizing anoymity of sperm/egg donors in infertility treatments.(Howell 2007; 19, Howell 2003) This could, however, be regarded as occidentarism (reverse-orientarism) if we think such a movement is sweeping across the entire European community. Voice of people---who strongly feel that the human identity issue should not be determined only by the genetic and/or biologiical origin--must not be suppressed.
What are the parents and children relationship meant to us? What are the families?
There won't be immedaite answers to these profound questions............
------Some couple may be giving up on being blessed with children just because the blood bonding is respected for quite some time in Japan? What if ...we see the foster-parent/child's bonding is diffeent from what is considered ordinary? Perhaps now is the time for us to think about reversing the prejudice for the sake of those children living detached far from their parents. This may well be the next step that we can do first for them----------