Virginia Woman Hopes Her Russian Adoption Isn't Undone

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Days after a Tennessee woman placed an adopted Russian boy on a flight back home alone, word came that Russia was suspending adoptions by Americans.

    Local couples who are in the process of trying to adopt Russian orphans now face frustration and fear.

    Local Couples Anxious Over Russian Adoption Future

    [DC] Local Couples Anxious Over Russian Adoption Future
    D.C. area couples scheduled to take home Russian orphans are worried that one woman's bad behavior will hurt their chances at expanding their families. (Published Thursday, Apr 15, 2010)

    Adoption agencies that have placed hundreds of children in local homes are now uncertain what the future holds.

    For 18 years, the Adoption Center of Washington has been pairing local families with orphans from Russia and China. Their wall of Christmas cards attests to so many success stories, but now the uncertainty over whether Russia is suspending adoptions by Americans has caused anxiety for one of its clients, a local couple.

    "They are ready to go," said Linda Brownlee, Director of the Adoption Center of Washington. "Their in-laws are in their house and they're very anxious whether or not they are going to be able to get on a plane and go."

    Julie Zupan adopted Zachary when he was 18 months old, bringing him into her heart and her Alexandria home. He is now 3. The adoption process was so hard she told her mother she almost gave up.

    "I said, 'I just know I have a lot of love in my heart to give a baby,' and my mother said before she died, 'Then you hold on to that because that's what going to see you through,' and when I went to court in Russia and I told that story, the judge started to cry a little bit," Zupan said.

    Zupan wants to adopt another child from a Russian orphanage and realizes that the the American mom who sent her child back has caused consequences. Now Zupan is pleading for the children.

    "Russia and U.S., I'm counting on your to work it out," she said. "There are too many babies. Don't punish them for the mistakes the adults made in the process."

    The U.S. State Department is sending a representative to Russia to see try to get assurances that American families can continue adopting Russian orphans.