Most nations will fast-track adoptions of older children with special needs. "Now that they're being a bit more flexible with the one-child policy, healthy Chinese babies are at a premium within China, they're not going to send those away. So what they're doing now is sending older, handicapped children who are mainly boys," Selman said.
Blitzer, the New York professor waiting to adopt a second child from China, has considered adopting a special needs child. She saw a video of a seven-year-old girl with severe leg deformities "I just fell in love with her, she had such fight," said Blitzer, who consulted an orthopedic surgeon to get advice on possible treatment before the girl was adopted by another family.
Still, as Blitzer waits for word of adopting an infant, she looks through Web pages of children awaiting adoption and wonders of the fate of kids spending their childhood in orphanages. "These kids are relegated to no option but institutionalization? That's a hard card to be dealt," Blitzer said.