A&E’s newest reality show, Adults Adopting Adults, is giving us a look into the lives of people who are in the process of adopting. While there are plenty of shows that focus on the topic of adoption, A&E gave us that little twist we need to keep things interesting. (At this point, we’ve been watching reality TV shows for years and have seen shows on just about every topic. There are reality TV shows about people who eat couches, for goodness sakes!)
So, here’s where it gets interesting: The people featured on this show aren’t adopting children. Instead, they’re adopting other adults.
Yeah, apparently, it’s a thing…
‘Adults Adopting Adults’ kicks off its premiere episode by introducing us to the people who are looking to adopt another grown-up. Some are adults who want to help another adult who has no family in their lives. Others are princes looking for someone they can pass their money and title too.
We start things off in Ohio, where we meet Danny and Christy— a middle-aged cat-loving, childless couple who let their felines sit on their table and share their milkshakes.
When they’re not giving their kitties frozen drinks, Danny and Christy “help” a 20-year-old Austrian girl named Ileana. Danny met Ileana on social media after Ileana posted her life story online and noted that she’s alone because her father died when she was very young. Danny explains that they began texting, and that Ileana looks at him as a “father figure.”
He says that he always wanted a daughter to be his “legacy.” Christy (and the cats) seems to be along for the ride.
“Did you ever think we’d be adopting a grown woman…with a baby?” Danny asks Christy.
Wait—hold up. Record scratch. Ileana is knocked up, too?! Things just got a bit more interesting…and creepy.
They’ve shelled out the cash to fly pregnant Ileana to Ohio so she can live with them and be adopted as their daughter. (Hopefully they evicted Garfield & the rest of the cat gang from one of the bedrooms so the poor girl and her kid can have a cat-free space to sleep?)
Christy is nervous to bring a baby into her home, telling us she’s never even changed a diaper. (I’ll bet she can change the heck out of a litter box though!)
“I have a lot of love in my heart, but it’s mostly for my fur babies!”
Danny tells us that Ileana is not the first adult woman whom he’s considering adopting. Years ago, he met an 18-year-old whom he wanted to adopt…that is, until he began having ROMANTIC FEELINGS FOR HER.
What in the cat scratch fever is happening here?!?!?!?!
Obviously, Christy nixed that adult adoption really fast. She admits that Danny has cheated on her in the past, so she’s nervous about bringing a young, beautiful woman into their house.
It’s arts and crafts time, so Danny shoves a cat to the side so he can make a poster for Ileana. Danny suggests slogans to write on the poster to make Ileana feel welcome in her new home.
“If it were my poster, I’d want it to say, ‘Welcome to Ohio, where’s my blowie?’” Danny snorts. “Where are the half-naked girls?”
Christy (and all of America watching right now) looks horrified. Danny fashions himself quite the comedian, though, and thinks he’s a real hoot. Christy tells us that a lot of their loved ones can’t stand Danny.
It’s becoming increasingly obvious that Christy does not want this strange pregnant girl moving into her home, but she really isn’t being given a choice. She does, however, insist that Ileana and her baby live in a camper in the yard. That way, Danny is not living under the same roof as this young Austrian girl and Christy doesn’t have to worry about Danny sneaking into her room at night.
Danny admits that he’s concerned he will become “physically attracted” to Ileana, despite looking at her as a “daughter figure.” Christy says her friends want to kill Danny and are questioning his motives for bringing Ileana to their home…er…yard.
IS ANYONE ELSE CREEPED OUT BY THIS SITUATION? JUST ME? OK…
Also, does this poor girl KNOW what sort of freak show she’s moving into? Can she watch this footage in the airport before she heads to Danny and Christy’s camper?
Next, we head to Las Vegas to meet Kim and her husband Joe, who have two young kids. Kim says that Joe’s parents aren’t involved in their kids’ lives, so she went granny-hunting on The Interwebs and found a couple—Vickie and Joe— to become her kids’ surrogate grandparents. Kim says she was also looking for a motherly figure for herself, and Vickie fits the bill.
Kim was adopted from Korea, but her adopted father has died, and Kim and her adoptive mother are currently estranged. She says that Mommy Dearest wasn’t thrilled when Kim told her that her childhood sucked, so now it’s been about eight years of estrangement. However, Kim and her mom recently began working on rebuilding their relationship.
Kim says that she suspects that her mother will be very unhappy to learn that Kim wants to be adopted by Vickie and Joe.
Joe makes it clear that he’s not comfortable with this whole adoption situation, but says that it really doesn’t matter what he thinks. The look Kim gives him seems to confirm that.
Next, we get to meet Vickie and Joe. They are bikers with hearts of gold. Joe hauls dumpsters for a living, while Vickie is currently disabled with a back injury. They mention that, unlike them, Joe and Kim have a lot of money. However, they insist that they’re not hanging around Joe and Kim for their money. Instead, they’re hanging around them for their kids.
…which doesn’t sound any less creepy, actually…
Vickie says she actually has three grown sons, but no grandkids yet. She insists she wasn’t “being a creepier” when she found Kim on the Internet.
Anyway, Vickie is nervous because she will be meeting Kim’s actual mother at Kim’s daughter’s upcoming birthday party.
Our next stop is Broome, New York, where we meet 23-year-old Bianca. She’s about to be adopted by Derek and Carol, a kindly couple in their sixties. Carol met Bianca at the community college where she works, and realized that Bianca needed “unconditional love.”
Bianca tells us that all she’s looking for is a family. She says her biological parents both had substance abuse issues so she spent a lot of time in foster care, until aging out at 21. Derek and Carol want to make sure Bianca feels secure and loved so they want to adopt her.
Derek tells Bianca that he wants to adopt her so that she doesn’t end up “on the pole.”
I think that’s nice…
That’s not all, though. Bianca tells us that, if Derek and Carol are adopting her, they’re also going to be adopting “Gina” …who is the “fashionable, fun, hood-version” of Bianca. “Gina” is Bianca’s alter ego…or something.
Bianca insists that she’s not using Derek and Carol just because they have money.
Carol’s stepdaughter from a previous marriage, Brittany, is against Bianca’s adoption, mostly because there was a previous girl Carol became close with and brought into her home. That didn’t work out well…because that girl ended up messing with Carol’s ex-husband (who is Brittany’s father).
Obviously, Carol’s marriage to Brittany’s dad was destroyed by this affair, and Brittany is still upset about what happened. She has cut off communication with Carol since finding out about Carol’s plan to adopt Bianca.
Back in Ohio, Danny and Christy are calling Ileana, who is in-route to Ohio. We get to see the photo Danny has chosen for his group chat with Ileana and Christy. It’s an uncomfortably sexy photo Ileana… who is soaking wet in the picture, for some reason.
Danny has entitled the group chat “Just Our Little Family” which is even more uncomfortable, honestly.
Christy, Danny and the cats are anxiously awaiting Ileana’s arrival. However, it’s been several hours since they’ve heard from her. Christy is worried that Ileana ghosted them after they paid for her plane ticket to America.
“Is she catfishing us?” Danny asks of Ileana. (I mean…the jokes just kind of write themselves, don’t they?)
Danny insists that Ileana has good intentions, and that she never considered moving to the U.S. until Danny suggested it.
Danny decides they need to go to the airport to hunt for Ileana. Christy gets dragged along on this caper, but she looks like she’s hoping Ileana decided to bolt.
They make it to the airport— welcome sign in-hand— and look for Ileana. Both Danny and Christy are getting increasingly worried that Ileana has ghosted them. (I mean…between the cats and the trailer and DANNY, can you blame her?)
All of a sudden, Danny spots Ileana, and Christy looks genuinely bummed out that the girl didn’t bolt.
“She wants to be with me!” Danny exclaims of Ileana.
UMMMMM…. you mean us, Danny…us…
Ileana tells us that she was nervous that Danny and Christy wouldn’t show up to meet her at the airport. She also tells us that, before coming to America, she was on the streets and pregnant, so even living in a camper in Danny’s front yard sounds good to her at this point.
The next morning, Ileana arrives to the house for breakfast. After Danny informs her that he had “weird dreams” the night before (ew…), he makes her breakfast.
Danny then tells Ileana that Christy isn’t super happy about her being there. He tries to push Christy into talking about their marital problems in front of Ileana, but Christy runs out in tears and refuses. Ileana looks mortified.
Meanwhile, in Las Vegas, Vickie and Joe are talking to Vickie’s sister Teressa, who is shocked when she finds out that Vickie and Joe are planning to adopt Kim. Teressa is convinced that Kim has ulterior motives.
Vickie tells her sister that’s not the case at all and, in fact, Kim is willing to shell out some serious cash so Vickie can get some dentures. Teressa says that people don’t just go around buying other people teeth for no reason.
The next day, Kim’s mom, Valerie, has arrived. Valerie is happy to be back in Kim’s “good” graces again. When Kim informs Valerie that Vickie and Joe will be at the birthday party, Valerie is not thrilled that the “bonus grandma” will be in attendance.
Kim assures Valerie that she’ll always be her kids’ grandma.
That’s all for this episode of ‘Adults Adopting Adults.’ On the next episode, we’ll meet the three other adopters/adoptees that will be featured on this season!
‘Adults Adopting Adults’ airs Mondays at 10/9c on A&E!