Rachel and her husband adopted Marcus out of Guatemalan foster care as a 7-month-old infant and brought him home to Lansing, Mich. With a round face framed by a full head of dark hair, Marcus was giggly and verbal — learning names of sea animals off flashcards, impressing other adults.
But in preschool, Marcus began resisting school, throwing himself on the ground, or pretending to be sick — refusals that got more intense and difficult to deal with. His parents sought therapy for him. Rachel and her husband had some savings for retirement, college and emergencies; at first, the cost of Marcus's therapy was not an issue. "We didn't realize where it was going," Rachel says.