Overweight individuals report greater difficulty in adopting a child. Some agencies will reject applicants who are obese, fearing that they are unhealthy or may have a reduced life expectancy. They may also fear obese parents will raise overweight children and may not wish children to be subjected to taunts of others, particularly schoolmates.
According to an article in the NAAFA Newsletter, one woman "found that, with a few exceptions, most agencies didn't want to deal with her because of her size." (The NAAFA Newsletter is published by the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance Inc. and is based in Sacramento, California.)
The article further states, "The weight of a parent can be a very serious consideration in the eyes of some adoption agencies. Eleven years ago, a lawsuit in Wisconsin received national attention when a couple, each weighing 200 pounds, were denied adoption by a state agency. The matter was resolved by the governor, who declared that his grandmother had been fat, and with no ill effects."
Obese individuals can either lose the weight or seek an adoption agency or attorney who is willing to work with overweight adoptive parents.
Frances M. White, "Adoption," NAAFA Newsletter, November 1989, 6.
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©2000 by Christine Adamec and William Pierce, Ph.D. Reprinted from The Encyclopedia of Adoption, 2nd Edition (2nd Edition) with permission of Facts On File, Inc.
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