"Having an instant multicultural family was magical for about two weeks,” says Stacey Conner, a 41-year-old American mom from Spokane, Washington.
After she volunteered in an orphanage in Haiti in 2005, Conner and her husband adopted a 5-year-old Haitian boy named “J.”
Conner claims the boy had attachment disorder and began a strict regimen of attachment parenting of constant surveillance in which a child must often ask for food and water. After two months, J threw a tantrum where he unintentionally hit Conner’s nose with the back of his head.
Conner says the 5-year-old’s strike was accidental, but describes it as “a domestic violence situation. Forget love. Right then, I didn’t even like J.”
J was sent to live with another family in the Midwest. Conner’s biological children adjusted seamlessly to life without their adoptive brother. But other people were puzzled. Neighbors who had seen J riding his bike asked, “Where’s your son?” When Conner answered truthfully, “I’d get the most horrified stares, so I’d keep walking. And I didn’t tell many out-of-town friends or extended family for months.”
Despite such events, the Conners were approved by local social workers to become a foster family, and in October 2013 received a 3-month-old boy as their first placement.