Here are a few, of what I gather to be, some of the reasons:
1.) There are more advertised and available services and resources catering to adoption then family preservation -expecially in the "private" sector. (Wendy's gives 50 cents of every Frosty purchased to Adoption charities, adoption benefits and assistance from employers, I've even seen bake sales to raise money for adoption.) Google "adoption" and then Google "assistance for natural families". See how many results you get.
2.) Rampant coercion and corruption in the obtaining of babies from poor, young and unsupported women. (I have a theory that part of this lack of support comes from the distances we now have between family members and the lack of community and interpersonal relationships within communities. Yay, technology! We don't have to talk to people face to face anymore but when you need someone to help - good luck getting in touch!)
3.) Trendiness. Celebrity adoptions, glorification of adoption in the media (IE Juno, almost every Disney Movie, the Hallmark channel...), pseudo-humanitarianism.This kills me. "Gee, I really wanna help out a kid - but not his family, community or country!" If you really want to help send money, volunteer, mentor, be a CASA/GAL, be a Big Brother or Sister, show support... A child for yourself should not be a part of the deal if you "just want to help out".
(I do not mean to offend people - Madonna just make me wanna vomit! I know there are great adoptive parents out there who do it for the right reason and "get it" for what it is!)
4.) The standard Western beliefs about adoption have been propagated mostly by media, churches, adopters and the industry itself as many who have experienced it negatively suffer in silence. The shame projected on first parents and adoptees has contributed GREATLY to this issue in the past. Thankfully, people are beginning to speak out in numbers.
5.) Materiaism & lack of value and respect for genetic heritage and familial relationships - the well accepted idea that financial advantages are more important than DNA.
6.) ENTITLEMENT - Our society is one that says if you can get it - you must have deserved it. Not every one who has a Mercedes "deserves" one. Parenthood is a right - not the opportunity to parent. The sad fact is, there are people who would make great parents who are infertile and horrible parents who should have never reproduced. Life is not always fair.
7.) The idea that motherhood should only come after being "prepared". This causes many women to either lose children to adoption because they do not feel "prepared" to parent because they don't ave a great job, own a house, etc. It also is a huge cause of infertility. Our bodies are ment to have babies in specific time frame - a biological clock doesn't stop for careers, marriage, or anything else.
8.) The idea that a child requires two parents in the home. While it can be an advantage, sometime it is not. It is not a necessity.
11.) The lack of real, honest and full reproductive education and free birthcontrol available to women around the world.
10.) $1.4 BILLION. Need I say more...
It is really a little frightening to me how prevalent adoption is in our society. Did you know the approximately 2% of the total world population has falsified or no available family history? An estimated 51% of Americans are directly affected by adoption in some way? Instances of accidental incest in Westernized countries are rising? (Google it...)
OK. I have the willies now. I need to take a walk...
Thanks for asking this - it is something we as a society need to think about.
Spydermomma, I would love to walk and talk with you - and a few of the other lovely people I've met in the YA adoption section - I bet we'd get some sh*t DONE!!! :)