Rabbi Shmuley Boteach’s Dec. 3 column was on gay adoptions. There should be no discussion at all, as Rabbi Boteach acknowledges, unless one is willing to take on the raising of an adoptive child himself. There is also the matter of single adoptions, which have been the lifesavers of many a hard-to-place child with special needs or simply an older or mixed-race child. Babies are desired. Older children or handicapped children are not.

What I have found disheartening in my years as an adoptive mother to four children is the praise that was heaped upon us when our children were young, telling us how wonderful we were and what a great mitzvah we were doing, then how very soon this praise turned into indifference as we dealt with the rigors and stresses of children who are born with many genetic differences and issues.

There is something very sad in how families reproduce themselves over and over rather than stopping to think about taking in children who have neither mother nor father, homosexual or heterosexual, to love and care for them. This is a very great mitzvah that merits thought and action on behalf of the many difficult and unwanted children in this world.