A few words best describe us. Multi-racial and multi-cultural – Richa is originally from India and Daniel from Germany, and our son Arjun – or Aki – joined our family from New York. Aki and our future child have an extended family that includes members who are American, Indian, German, English, Thai, Chinese and New Zealander. Warm and loving – we’ve been together for almost 15 years and adore each other and hardly ever fight. Aki has brought even more love and warmth into our family, into which we hope to welcome our future child, as well as you, our child’s birth family. Adventurous and outgoing – we love travelling, have backpacked in Tanzania and Indonesia when we were younger, have, between us, lived and worked in 18 countries, and spend weekends biking, hiking and exploring new parts of Brooklyn. Value Differences – even within our immediate family, we have a diverse set of career choices and role models our child can choose from – we have 4 teachers, including Daniel’s brother who teaches refugee children, lawyer, musician, performance artist, baker, owner of a Thai massage parlor, real estate administrator and a pilot.
University professor, advisor to United Nations
He competitively plays a game called underwater rugby, loves playing the guitar, and salsa dancing.
Until 2 years ago, Daniel was on the US national team for underwater rugby.
She loves to travel, having picnics in the park, and her favorite activity is reading to Aki.
We are a very loving family, and our home is filled with warmth, humor and laughter. We love dancing, be it salsa, soca, Indian Bollywood, or any other music that comes our way. We enjoy evenings playing board games and making music together (Daniel plays the guitar, Richa sings and Arjun plays the drums).
On weekends, we ride our bicycles to slide mountain on Brooklyn’s Pier 6, play ball in Prospect Park, or just meet Aki’s friends at a local playground. We also like to go hiking in the Hudson valley or spend the day on Far Rockaway beach building sandcastles.
We all three love travel. We love packing for a trip, the atmosphere at airports, watching the planes. Aki plays a pretend game at home in which he buys tickets, takes his toy laptop out at security check, boards a plane (aka the couch), and then flies to a beach or to meet his grandparents. In real life we usually travel to see family, or on vacation someplace warm and near the sea. Before Aki, we have taken two 3-month vacations to backpack on a tiny budget. Once in Tanzania and once in Indonesia. Aki enjoyed his trips to India, Germany, Puerto Rico, Pennsylvania and Fort Lauderdale.
Richa’s parents and her sister Riju, who is 6 years younger than Richa, are very close. They live in India and the whole family has a video call at least once a week. We also have a close relationship with Richa’s extended family, including her many aunts and uncles, 8 cousins, their spouses and children. They are scattered over New York, India, Singapore, Pittsburgh and London, but get together for family events like weddings, which are loud, warm and fun.
Daniel’s nuclear family lives in Berlin, Germany. His parents divorced when he was six years old. He and his brother Lennart, who is 4 years younger than Daniel, grew up with their father but they all remained close with their mother. Both his parents have remarried and we enjoy a warm and close relationship with Daniel’s father and stepmother, who was born in Thailand, his mother and stepfather and his brother and brother’s wife. Christmas is a time for Daniel’s family to gather and we both try to be in Berlin over Christmas.
“We can only imagine how hard it must be to try and make the best decision for your child and family, weighing all factors, and deciding what family and surroundings you would like to see your child grow up in. We know that there will be ups and downs and that bringing up a child comes with challenges. What we can promise you is that we will love our child and do whatever we can to help her or him to feel safe and be happy, and achieve his or her full potential, and do our best to bring up a mature, balanced person who will love and respect us, the adoptive parents, as well as you, the birth family.”
-Daniel & Richa