Highlighting the lives of the adopted

Graph shows the amount of kids adopted in 2008-2012. Information from the Child Welfare Information Gateway.

Graph shows the amount of kids adopted in 2008-2012. Information from the Child Welfare Information Gateway.

To raise awareness for more than 100,000 children who wait to be adopted from the U.S. foster care system, CBS Television Network broadcasts an annual holiday special every year. For the past 20 years, the holiday special called Home for the Holidays airs live on television in December and includes performances by some of America’s most popular musicians. The show features inspirational stories of families who have adopted children. What some people may not know is that, from actors to athletes, many of the world’s most famous celebrities are adopted themselves.

“I am a living testament you can be adopted and successful,” said Duante Culpepper, a former Vikings and Dolphins quarterback.

The holidays seem a good time to draw attention to these success stories as the month of November became known as National Adoption Month when Bill Clinton expanded National Adoption Week in 1995. 

“We must work tirelessly to make sure that every boy and girl in America who is up for adoption has a family waiting to reach him or her,” said Bill Clinton.

Some famous adopted celebrities include actor Micheal Fox, singer Faith Hill, and former President Clinton.

“Having been adopted, I really have a strong sense- a necessity almost- for stability, a foundation where my family is concerned,” said Hill.

According to the Institute for Family Studies, when compared to students living with their married biological parents, a substantially higher amount of adopted students performed poorly on indicators of academic progress and school adjustment.

“I felt I could do just enough to get by,” said Culpepper who worked harder his senior year to get a football scholarship.

According to the secretary of the Association of Psychiatrists Dr. Varma Deyalsingh, some adopted children struggle to gain a sense of identity and question why they were given away by their biological parents.

“One problem is probably just trying to come to a sense of why they were put up for adoption,” said counselor Chris Murray.

In the United States alone, there are 1.5 million adopted children and it is estimated that seven million Americans are adopted. The adoption network says that there are over 400,000 children in foster care in the United States waiting to be adopted, and most children will spend five to six years in foster care before being adopted.

“I think adoption is a blessing all around when it’s done right,” said actor and adoptive parent Hugh Jackman.