child adoption
childless couple
male preference

How to Cite

Ifeoma Elizabeth, O. (2024). THE POLITICS OF GENDER IN CHILD ADOPTION . Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka Journal of Sociology, 7(1). Retrieved from


The child is the traditional reason for marriage. Children are revered and esteemed as a source of pride, strength, security and economic prowess for the family. Thus, a family’s strength is measured by the presence of children in that family but sometimes this traditional expectation is defeated by the issue of childlessness. This condition is known to be the cause of marital instability in African culture just as marital success is based on the ability of a couple to procreate. Child adoption is the plausible option for the childless couple in our society as it affords them the opportunity to have children they can call their own. However, adoption is not without challenges. Certain socio-cultural practices, norms and values that border on gender keep affecting the practice of child abortion. It is against this bedrock that this paper was substantiated with a survey and a comparative review of some empirical studies on the subject matter. The instrument for data collection was a twenty point structured and open ended online questionnaire while the population was fifty and female members of the counseling association of Nigeria (CASSON) and the Anglican diocese of Ideato Whatsapp platforms. They were purposively and randomly enlisted to participate in the study with the equal opportunity given to everyone of them. Analysis was done in simple percentage and for the unstructured response an open-coding technique patterns was used to identify patterns in the responses. These patterns categories and subcategories were identified to group the responses. The findings show that women (70%) resolve the problem of childlessness by adopting a child but more men (59%) do so by marrying a second wife. The most preferred sex in child adoption is male (75%). The husband preference for the male child (92%) female child (8%)while the wife preference for  the female child (57%) male child (43%) the study recommend a mass enlightenment programme to re-orient the people out of the culture that limit the women’s access to child adoption.