The “You don’t have to be a perfect parent” is a relentless radio ad campaign for adoptuskids.org, and Holy Moses, is it STUPID.The mission of AdoptUsKids is to encourage people to adopt kids waiting in foster situations across the U.S. The site includes featured kids/siblings, caseworkers and success stories. Nothing wrong with all that. But those ridiculous radio ads have got to go.
The voice-over is a man speaking at warp speed, as though AdoptUsKids is short on radio-ad advertising time funds. He rambles briefly about some faults that the listener might have, then says, “You don’t have to be a perfect parent.” He adds something like, “There are plenty of kids at AdoptUsKids who’d LOOOOVE to put up with you!” If you don’t think anything’s wrong with these ads, then you haven’t heard them.
I hear the “You don’t have to be a perfect parent” ads only at night during the “Coast to Coast” program, so I don’t know if they air at other times. I’m sick to death of this stupid campaign, and here’s why.
Essentially, AdoptUsKids is encouraging inept people to become parents. We have enough lousy parents out there, without having to encourage the existence of more. There are people sitting on the fence regarding whether or not they should adopt, and some of these people would definitely make crummy parents. Just because a person has considered adoption doesn’t mean they’d make a good or even mediocre parent – they could make a disastrous parent.
Such an individual then hears one of these “You don’t have to be a perfect parent; there are plenty of kids who’d love to put up with you” radio ads, and then decides once and for all to adopt — and they end up failing their adopted kids miserably.
Usually, people who are reluctant to adopt have good reason for this reluctance. They may recognize their lack of patience, their difficulty in expressing affection, their generous use of hurtful words, their propensity for angry outbursts, their self-absorption. Do we really want to encourage these people to adopt?
Though some people may be hesitant to adopt due to reasons other than their perceived parenting skills, such as tight budget and lack of housing space, it’s quite believable that in many cases, when people are reluctant to adopt, they are doubting their ability to raise a child — even if they’ve already raised kids to adulthood.
There has got to be a better way to let prospective adoptive parents know there are many children waiting for adoption. Just because a child is a foster child, doesn’t mean he or she should have to “put up” with some irresponsible, self-absorbed, incompetent adult.