Adoptions With Love Blog

Alec Ingold: Turning Adoption into a Superpower

  “A kid that is adopted can go out and do whatever he wants to do.” – Alec Ingold

Alec Ingold is living the American dream. The football star is known for his athletic skills, currently playing fullback for the Miami Dolphins. However, he faced his share of adversity getting to this point, starting off as an undrafted athlete.

Over the years, Alec Ingold has achieved success both on and off the field. In 2023, he signed a three-year extension with his second NFL team and got married. He also made incredible strides in helping children who were adopted (just like him) or who are waiting to be adopted into permanent, loving homes.

What you may not know about Alec Ingold, a 27-year-old NFL athlete, is that he was adopted. His parents, Pat and Chris, adopted him at birth.

Alec says that, over the years there have been setbacks and bumps on his road to success. He credits his adoption for having prepared him for these challenges.

When Alec was eight years old, he learned that he was adopted. His birth mother made the difficult decision to place him for adoption as a baby, explaining that “a man who looks just like me didn’t want me, and it hurt [her].” Alec says his parents allowed him to feel that pain as a child, but then encouraged him to redirect it towards aspects of his life that he could control.

“Their love, support, and commitment [were] exactly what I needed,” Alec says of his adoptive parents.

Giving Back to the Community

“Every kid deserves a safe, loving, lifetime family,” Alec believes. When he’s not supporting his team’s quarterback in the offense, Alec is supporting children in the foster care and adoption community.

“A kid that is adopted can go out and do whatever they want to do,” Ingold told Local 10 News.

He uses his platform to inspire the adoption community. He often promotes various adoption and foster care agencies.

Alec Ingold is passionate about the positive power of adoption, but he also works to inspire those children who may feel “other.” Having been adopted, he recognizes that it takes time to find yourself and–for those in foster care—embrace love.

“The identity piece is big,” Alec Ingold says when speaking about the impact of adoption on children. “But also,” he adds, “It’s a daily fight of trying to be the best version of who you can possibly be… not because you’re running away from some fear or some lack of support, but because you’re running towards that love.”

“I fight it every single day,” Ingold admitted. “Some days it’s easy, some days it’s hard, but that’s life. Being real and vulnerable about that, it can empower some other people that relate at a very deep level.”

An Open Adoption Story

With the support and love of his family, Alec has always had a place to call home. When he goes home to his family house in Wisconsin where he grew up, he knows he belongs. He also has had the great fortune of open and honest co

nversations with his parents about his adoption.

“I never knew anything different,” Ingold says. “My parents did a great job of being extremely transparent. So it was never a secret.”

In an interview with The Palm Beach Post, Alec remembered meeting his birth mother once when he was eight years old.

“I just remember it was pretty emotional for everyone involved,” he says. “I think it was a lot of happiness, that this is what everyone was hoping for.”

Overcoming the Obstacles

While there was joy, Alec can also take an honest look back and acknowledge the struggles he faced as a transracial adoptee.

“There’s tough times with my race and ethnicity being different than my family growing up,” he says. “And I never really gave it much time, like I just kind of dealt with it suppressed. I found different ways to kind of avoid the issue.

“And as you grow up, I just became a big, like, people pleaser. Always needed to be a perfectionist, like I felt I needed to be better, because I needed to be accepted, whether it’s making my parents proud, making somebody proud. I was never just good enough.

“And that was a lot of suppressed feelings from adoptions, and from feeling like a liability to my birth parents and all those issues that really arise.”

Alec is open and honest about his adoption experience. It is quite common for adopted children to have these questions. It helps immensely to have a loving, supportive adoptive family that is willing to ensure their child feels well-adjusted and connected with their cultural background.

Alec’s parents praised him for being “an amazing gift” to their family. He credits his adoptive family for shaping him into the person he has grown up to become.

“I’m thankful for my family. I’m thankful for my little sister and my parents and being so close to a family that loves you so much,” he said. “But as a kid, you ask that question, ‘Why [was I] being put up for adoption?’ I didn’t know if I was too big of a liability for my birth parents. I didn’t know if I was good enough.”

As a result, Alec Ingold is taking his experiences and using them to help other children who might feel this way. In an Instagram post from the NFL, Alec Ingold explains how adoption has become his superpower:

“One of the first impacts that I really felt as an NFL athlete and being able to use this platform for good was becoming a national spokesperson for AdoptUSKids.”

“Being adopted, and being able to share the vulnerable situations, the circumstances, the tough parts of my life [with] the kid that is looking to do something great – it doesn’t have to be football, it doesn’t have to be anything other than what that person wants to do with their life — to be able to inspire those people, to create connection one-on-one or in a group, that was the real impact for me in finding purpose.”

Alec Ingold also chose an adoption charity as his “Cause for Cleats” in November, aiming to provide safe homes, education, and counseling for children who are in need of permanent homes. “While every child’s journey is different,” he said, “these cleats let us walk together – helping place vulnerable kids in the stable, supportive housing they deserve.”

Learn More About Adoption

The Alec Ingold adoption story is one that can serve as a powerful testament to the positive bonds built from adoption. Family is not build on DNA; it is built on love. As Alec Ingold states:

“As someone who was adopted as a newborn, I am living proof of the positive impact of a loving family.”

Interested in learning more about other NFL players touched by adoption? Read our article:

Touchdown! 7 NFL Players Touched by Adoption

If you would like to learn even more about adoption, contact Adoptions With Love today. Call 800-722-7731, text (617) 777-0072, or contact us online.