Baby Girl versus Adoptive Couple Essay

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There was a court case, Baby Girl v. Adoptive Couple, in which a child who was partially Cherokee Indian, because of her father, and Hispanic, because of her mother. The adoption of Baby Girl was a difficult one due to the fact that she has an ancestry of Cherokee Indian. Therefore, under the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), the adoption of Baby Girl seemed impossible because Biological Father had the right to have custody of his child, Baby Girl, if he chose to. So, the court greatly sees that by giving Baby Girl back to Biological Father would be in the child’s best interest under the ICWA, because there is the assumption that if she is with her Biological Father and her culture, she will not suffer any type of emotional distress. For…show more content…
Therefore, from a very young age, Baby Girl might have questioned why she did not share the same physical features as her parents; thus, causing her to have a failed ethnic identity. In a 1987 study, conducted by Simon and Alstein, an Indian adopted child stated, “It bothers me that I’m Indian. People don’t look up to Indians. The whites always fought the Indians and the Indians got beat. We aren’t looked up to. There is nothing special about being Indian” (Sindelar, 2004). This clearly indicates that the native adoptee feels inferior to his White adoptive parents; therefore, the child was obviously unable to fully integrate into the White culture without feeling inferior. In the case of Baby Girl v. Adoptive Couple, she may have been at risk to feeling the same inferiority due to the extreme exposure of the White culture and the lack of exposure and pride towards her own ethnicity; therefore, causing possibilities of distress and discomfort in her own skin. Sindelar suggests that there is a phenomenon known as the Split-Feather Syndrome, in which “social, psychological, and emotional disabilities — among expatriated Indian people, i.e., those who were placed and raised in non-Indian homes” (2004). The Split-Feather Syndrome may be due to the extremities in culture difference between Indian and other cultures. For instance, the ideologies of child-rearing, family bonding,
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