When we toured our son’s orphanage, I asked the assistant director so many questions that Helen, our poor translator, needed to stop for a water break. The assistant director, on the other hand, asked only one question of me, a question that left me stammering: “Why are people not adopting boys?”
They have many boys, “very good boys”, she pointed out, and they cannot find families. Our own son, obviously adored by the orphanage workers, was not quickly snatched off of the shared list. He had two special needs, both considered minor in baby girls. Females with these special needs are snatched up quickly. Our son’s file sat on the shared list for five months.
So why is it that boys struggle to be adopted? How did I answer this woman’s question? Well, frankly, I didn’t. I just kind of stammered that I didn’t know why. Any answers that went through my head seemed so ridiculous that I didn’t want to waste our translator’s breath. What could I possibly say?
Girls are cuter?
We won’t even go there.
Boys are more destructive?
You’ll have to trust me on this, but given a perfectly clean and pristine room, his big sister could dismantle it in about 30 seconds flat. XiXi can’t hold a candle to that.
Boys are too active?
Again, not to rip on the big sister, (who we all adore), but XiXi does not climb the counters (like she does) or scale the bookshelves (like she does) or hang from his arms on the fireplace mantle (just for fun?) like she does. He’s the perfect amount of active. He loves riding his bike and chasing the dog, but he’s also quick to calm down for story time.
Girls are more loving?
Love-Bug is this boy’s….
Girls have better hair?
What my daughter would not give to have hair like this. True, the styling options are limited, but don’t you want to rub that head of hair? Most people cannot fight the urge and his head calls to them like a genie’s lamp. So do his cheeks. Thankfully XiXi is very tolerant.
Boys might be violent or aggressive?
Maybe. But this one sure isn’t. If someone is crying, he cries with them. If someone is hurt, he’s quick to hug. Compassion is his middle name. Oh wait, after Love-Bug.
Girl’s clothes are cuter?
O.K., you’ve got me there. But this boy does appreciate fashion. Check out the shoes.
People don’t know there are boys waiting for families in China?
Based on the question I get at least once a week: “How did you get a boy from China?”, I think that might be true. Even in China, a local woman commented to our guide, “I see many families adopting little girls, but never little boys. Did this family pay more?” In the U.S., people seem to think along those same lines: this family had to do something special (pay more money, pull some strings, wait longer…) to get a male child out of China. The opposite is true.
Our XiXi is a walking, talking, loving, snuggling, smiling, charming-your-socks-off
billboard to the world.
There are boys waiting for families in China.
Wonderful boys who will bring joy to your home and fill your heart to bursting.
P.S. For my birthday, I told my kids I did not want a single store-bought present. So while I was out on a walk, my kids wrote and recorded this little song. With my oldest on guitar and vocals, he had his siblings all join in at 2:08. Feel free to jump to the end; my kids won’t know. Listen at the very end, right after the song finishes, to my little China boy. The Mom Song What mom could not use a little more of that in her home?
Yes, we must have pulled some strings to get this boy!