Stephen J. Buhler, Attorney at Law

Teen's plea for adoption doesn't fall on deaf ears

There are times when it is for the best for a biological parent to give their child up for adoption. For the children who are given a home to live in and a loving family to call their own, adoption can be the most uplifting experience of their life. Utah readers may be particularly interested in the following story.

A 15-year-old foster child stood in front of a packed church and pleaded with those looking up at him to be adopted. The boy, who has been in foster care since birth, doesn't care who adopts him as long as he can become part of a family. His plea comes after a search to find the mother who gave birth to him while in prison ended with the discovery of her obituary. Since his speech at the church, hundreds of calls from those interested in the adoption have been pouring in from locations as far away as Utah.

There is no legal limit on the age of anyone being adopted. Adoption is sometimes used by stepparents to provide death benefits to adult children who are not biologically theirs. The outcomes for children who age out of the foster care system are significantly worse than those who get placed in a home. Once a child ages out of the system they are left to fend for themselves without a proper support system. Because of this, many end up jobless and eventually homeless. According to the North American Council on Adoptable Children, when it comes to foster care adoptions, less than 10 percent are of children ages 14 to 17 years old.

Adoption should come from the heart as the end goal is to create a loving family environment for the child. With the right support system, adopted children are more likely to succeed in life.

Source: Fox News, "Florida church flooded with calls after 15-year-old orphan asks for family to adopt him," Edmund DeMarche, Oct. 17, 2013

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