TLC's 'Little Couple' Stars Address Double-Adoption Criticism (Exclusive Video)
After years of working through their fertility problems, "The Little Couple" stars Bill Klein and Jen Arnold decided to go forward on adopting this season on the TLC series.
First, they planned to adopt William, a 3-year-old Chinese orphan who, like Klein and Arnold, has dwarfism. But then the couple suddenly received a second offer to adopt a little girl – also with dwarfism – from India.
And while they say they've received mostly encouraging feedback, a few have criticized their decision to adopt two children at once.
"It's all been positive, I mean, a few crazy people, but mostly comments on how crazy it is to be adopting two kids at once, but we are. That being said, we're happy crazy," Arnold told TheWrap.
"I guess we kind of looked at it as, you know, there are a bunch of other people, friends of ours, that have two, three, some even four kids, you know, they haven't killed each other yet," Klein added.
It took 11 months from when they discovered William in February 2012 to the point in which they were able to pick him up in China earlier this year. The time was compacted for television to half a dozen episodes this season.
The opportunity to adopt 19-month-old Zoe came as a surprise. The couple placed themselves on a waiting list with the organization, Little People of America, when they first got married about four years ago. Not an adoption agency itself, the LPA does work with agencies when they need to place a child with dwarfism or skeletal dysplasia.
"It seems like it's simultaneous, even though it's really not," Arnold, a pediatric doctor, said of the timing of Zoe's adoption.
A few months after finding William, the couple got a call from the LPA's adoption coordinator telling them that they were next on the waiting list and that there was a little girl from India in need of a family.
"I always wanted a little girl, too," Arnold explained. "We always thought we wanted two kids in general. What were we going to do, say no? No, of course not. We decided, let's do it. If we're going to have our two kids, hopefully, and this will be it. So that's actually how it all played out. It wasn't that we intended to, or tried to, adopt two children at one time. It's just how the stars aligned, really."
"So for those people who said, 'You're crazy,' well, it's just kind of like life," she continued. "Like getting pregnant with twins, it's not something we planned on. But hopefully, it's a blessing that we'll figure out a way to handle."
So, where does Zoe's adoption stand now? "It's taking even longer [than William's adoption], so it's just different depending on the country," said Klein, an entrepreneur.
"We are anxiously awaiting her," Arnold added. "We found her almost a year ago now, and we're still not done with that process."
Watch an exclusive preview for Tuesday's new episode below.
Tuesday's episode of "The Little Couple" airs at 10:30/9:30c on TLC.