November is National Adoption Awareness month.
THANKS to A-list couples like Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, Hollywood has put adoption in the spotlight.
In celebration of National Adoption Awareness Month in the United States, we’re taking a look at high-profile adoptive parents.
A year after being diagnosed with breast cancer, Sheryl Crow adopted her now seven-year-old son, Wyatt. The songstress said she always knew she’d be a mum.
“There was a shift in my life when I got diagnosed, (with breast cancer) because it demanded I look at everything and redefine my life,” she said. “I always felt I would be a mum. I have strong maternal instincts.”
The singer went on to adopt a second son, now four-year-old son Levi.
“I’ve always had maternal instincts,” she said. “And there are so many different ways you can go about that. My sons didn’t have to be from me. They didn’t have to look like me. I just wanted children to love.”
“They have so much energy and they keep me young!” Crow recently told Celebrity Baby Scoop. “I wouldn’t change a thing. I love getting to see things through their eyes.”
The Queen of Pop has adopted two children from Malawi – David, now nine, and Mercy, now seven – and has since spoken about the experience.
“This was an eye-opening experience” and “a real low point in my life,” the Like A Virgin singer said of adopting David.
“I didn’t know that trying to adopt a child was going to land me in another ... storm,” she added. “I was accused of kidnapping, child trafficking, using my celebrity muscle to jump ahead in the line, bribing government officials, witchcraft, you name it. I could get my head around people giving me a hard time for publishing my sex book or kissing Britney Spears at an awards show, but trying to save a child’s life was not something I thought I would be punished for ... In any case, I got through it. I survived.”
The Material Mum was more prepared for her second adoption.
“When I adopted Mercy James, I put my armour on,” the popstar said. “I tried to be more prepared. I braced myself. This time I was accused by a female Malawian judge that because I was divorced, I was an unfit mother. I fought the supreme court and I won. It took almost another year and many lawyers. I still got the ... kicked out of me, but it didn’t hurt as much. And looking back, I do not regret one moment of the fight.”
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie
A-listers Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt are parents to six children: Maddox, 13, Pax, 11, Zahara, nine, Shiloh, eight, and twins Knox and Vivienne, six.
Their three eldest children were adopted from Cambodia, Vietnam and Ethiopia – although, Jolie said she’s lost track of the details. “I couldn’t tell you in my own home who’s adopted and who’s not,” Jolie said.
“It doesn’t cross my mind,” she added. “There is something really wonderful when you adopt a child from another country because that whole country enters your house. We have different languages in our house, we have different flags up in our house, we have different food and culture and discussions and we go to their countries.”
The Oscar-winner wants her children to one day give back to their homelands.
“They have programmes in their countries (for) each of them we’re starting. There’s a TB/AIDS clinic being built for Zahara; there’s a clinic already for Mad(dox). So each of them will take that responsibility. They are from their country and they are of their country and they should know that, it’s part of their family, we are their family, but so is their country.”
Hugh Jackman is happiest, “being with my family, definitely, without a doubt”.
The sexy Wolverine star and his wife, Deborra-Lee Furness, have two adopted children – Oscar, 14, and Ava, nine. The hands-on dad said it was a “no-brainer” for them to adopt children in need.
“When we went first to talk to someone in Los Angeles about adoption, I remember, they said, ‘What do you want?’ I said, ‘Well, healthy would be good.’ And they said, ‘Well, what about the race?’ We’d ticked mixed race. And he said, ‘Now, listen. Please don’t, please don’t just tick that because you think it’s the right thing to tick.’ And he said to me, that we turn away children every month who are mixed race, because we can’t find families for them.”
Jackman’s wife Deborra has been named the New South Wales Australian of the Year for her fight for children’s rights around the world.
In 2008, she launched National Adoption Awareness Week in an attempt to pursue her vision for “Children all over the world to be given every chance to live a fulfilled life and achieve their full potential.”
Law & Order: SVU star Mariska Hargitay and her husband Peter Hermann endured a long and emotionally challenging journey to finally reach their beautiful family of five and now, things couldn’t be better for the happy couple.
“They’re awesome and perfect,” the star said of sons August, eight, and Andrew, three and daughter Amaya, three. “My heart just keeps getting bigger and bigger.”
The actress opened up to Ellen DeGeneres about her surprising second adoption.
Just months after bringing home daughter Amaya after an emotionally trying adoption process, the couple’s lawyer called them to let them know an agency had a newborn boy ready to be adopted as well.
“It was one of those things that we were not expecting at all and my husband and I looked at each other and have never been more sure about anything,” the actress tearfully recalls about their decision to bring home baby Andrew.
“This has been a year of true blessings.”
Katherine Heigl and Josh Kelley
Grey’s Anatomy star Katherine Heigl and her husband Josh Kelley adopted their daughter Naleigh from Korea when she was 10-month-old.
“(Adoption has) been a big part of my life and my family,” Katherine said. “My sister is Korean and my parents adopted her back in the 70s and so I just always knew that this is something I wanted to do.”
Katherine went on to talk about her now five-year-old daughter.
“She is a special needs baby and because of that it all moved so much faster. They wanted to get her to us as quickly as possible.”
The couple went on to adopt a second daughter, Adalaide, domestically in April 2012. “She’s great! She’s a delicious, beautiful, wonderful child,” the Grey’s Anatomy alum gushed of her new daughter.
Academy Award-winning actress Charlize Theron shocked fans with her baby news last year. The actress adopted a baby boy named Jackson.
Theron opened up about a letter she wrote at the age of eight, sharing her plans for a future adoption.
“My mother found (it). It said, ‘Would you please take me to orphanage, so that I can go and adopt a baby?’ I always knew I would adopt – always,” she shared.
Not only did Sandra Bullock become an Academy Award-winner in 2010, she also became a mum. The Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close actress adopted a New Orleans-born boy, Louis, in 2010.
Now four years old, Louis has become Sandra’s greatest joy.
“He’s just perfect, I can’t even describe him any other way,” she gushed.
“The first time I met Louis, it was like the whole outside world got quiet,” she said. “It was like he had always been a part of our lives.
All I said when I met him was, ‘Oh, there you are.’”
The Help star Viola Davis and husband Julius Tennon adopted daughter Genesis as a newborn in October 2011.
“She’s wonderful,” Davis gushed. “A complete and total blessing for us.”
Nashville star Connie Britton adopted son Yoby from Ethiopia in November 2011.
“I lost both of my parents within three years of each other and I kind of thought, ‘What am I waiting for?’ The man will come and if I want to have my own kids I can do that, but I (knew) this was something I (wanted) to do,” the single mum said. – Celebritybabyscoop/Tribune News Services.