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China

Nearly One-Third Of US Foreign Adoptions Come From China

CAIXIN (China)

Worldcrunch

BEIJING - Of the 8,619 children adopted by American families last year, including kids from more than 40 countries, more than 30% came from China, Caixin media reports, citing data from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Because of toughened regulations, 885 fewer children overall were adopted internationally by Americans compared with 2011, according to Caixin media. But the number of adopted Chinese, 2709, has increased to account for 31% of U.S. international adoptions.

The report pointed out both that China is America's largest international source for adoptions, while America is the principal destination for Chinese orphans who wind up abroad. Between 1999 and 2012, some 82,000 Chinese children were adopted by American families. In the peak year, 2005, the number of Chinese infants adopted reached over 7900, meaning one out of every three adoptee was from China.

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In the Siping orphanage - Wu's photoland

China, Ethiopia and Russia are the three major sources of children for adoption by the United States. However, last December, Russia signed the anti-Magnitsky Act as a response to the U.S. signature of the Magnitsky Act, which sanctions Russia over human rights issues. It's expected that the number of Chinese adoptions may rise again now that the anti-Magnitsky Act prohibits the adoption of Russian children by Americans.

The Caixin report also mentions the significant gender gap in adoptions from China: 68% of those adopted are girls. Only India and China showed such an abnormally high percentage of girl orphans, though India only places around 100 children in America each year. China's one-child-per-family policy contributes to the grim situation of abandoned baby girls.

According to the U.S. State Department's Office of Children's Issues, in 2012 the adoption process for of a Chinese child cost on average around $15,000. The complete adoption formalities cycle takes up to nine months, which places China roughly in the middle among all source countries.

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Society

Parenthood And The Pressure Of Always Having To Be Doing Better

As a father myself, I'm now better able to understand the pressures my own dad faced. It's helped me face my own internal demands to constantly be more productive and do better.

Photo of a father with a son on his shoulders

Father and son in the streets of Madrid, Spain

Ignacio Pereyra*

-Essay-

When I was a child — I must have been around eight or so — whenever we headed with my mom and grandma to my aunt's country house in Don Torcuato, outside of Buenos Aires, there was the joy of summer plans. Spending the day outdoors, playing soccer in the field, being in the swimming pool and eating delicious food.

But when I focus on the moment, something like a painful thorn appears in the background: from the back window of the car I see my dad standing on the sidewalk waving us goodbye. Sometimes he would stay at home. “I have to work” was the line he used.

Maybe one of my older siblings would also stay behind with him, but I'm sure there were no children left around because we were all enthusiastic about going to my aunt’s. For a long time in his life, for my old man, those summer days must have been the closest he came to being alone, in silence (which he liked so much) and in calm, considering that he was the father of seven. But I can only see this and say it out loud today.

Over the years, the scene repeated itself: the destination changed — it could be a birthday or a family reunion. The thorn was no longer invisible but began to be uncomfortable as, being older, my interpretation of the events changed. When words were absent, I started to guess what might be happening — and we know how random guessing can be.

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