From Australia

02.23.2012, 12:37 PM

A new report on forced relinquishment:

It’s now a cornerstone of social welfare policy that children should, if at all possible, stay with their birth parents, in particular their mother. Not so in years gone by. Right up to the 1970s, having a child out of wedlock was frowned upon and young women who fell pregnant were actively encouraged to give up their babies for adoption. Authorities argued this was done with good intentions, but now a powerful Senate Committee has heard evidence that tells a very different story.

It now seems many young, single mothers were never given the option of keeping their child. Unmarried mothers automatically had their hospital records marked ready for adoption – even before giving birth. There is evidence that some were sedated. Others were denied access to their babies as they were making crucial decisions about their future. As a result, these women have suffered terrible emotional distress throughout their lives…


6 Responses to “From Australia”

  1. I feel sick after reading that article. It’s heartbreaking.

  2. marilynn says:

    I was on adoption.com looking for my friend’s mother when I saw two posts sitting right on top of one another – mother and daughter 5 years apart looking for one another. It was the first time I’d noticed a match like that. It seemed so random and beautiful so magical that I had to reach them and tell them. Since then I’ve realized out of 1/4 million posts on adoption.com maybe a quarter of them are matched and don’t know it. I try to do a couple of them a month and I do it on the child’s birthday so they can have that reunion the day they were separated.

    Anyway that first match was a woman who was 17 and living with her step mom, her dad had passed away. She got pregnant. She was raped by some boys at a party that she did not know they offered to give her a ride home. Her step mom was a labor and delivery nurse. They decorated a nursery together bought little clothes. The day came she went into labor after dinner and they knocked her out and she woke up on a different floor with no pregnant women or new mothers, her baby was born and she had no idea if she gave birth to a boy or a girl. Her step mother would not tell her what gender the baby was. Her step mother told her the baby went to a married couple that were friends of the doctor. She said “I thought we talked about this I thought we agreed” Her step mom told her that she had to tell her that or she would have bee hysterical and uncooperative. She returned home her body empty shelled out breasts engorged with milk that her child was hungry for and the nursery was completely empty. She asked what happened to the baby’s things. Her step mother sold the furniture and baby clothing to the couple that adopted the baby. At a profit since she hand her step mom picked up things here and there at garage sales with money she was earning babysitting the neighbors kids. Her own baby furniture that she paid for . She turned 18 a few months later married the first boy that would get her out of that house and had a second child by the time she was 19 and a 3rd by the time she was 20. She started looking for her kidnapped child the day she turned 18 but it was not until she was in her 30′s that a friend drove her to the hospital where she could get a copy of the birth certificate and see for sure what day she gave birth and what gender the child was. She had a little girl after midnight the day after she’d gone to the hospital.

    Her daughter’s post came after the death of her adoptive parents as is often the case. It took a while to get current contact info for them. What bothers me about the people that say that its the person that does all the work that is the mother. This woman worried whether or not her child was being properly cared for – she worried sick for 35 years and finally all her searching paid off she just had not realized it because she did not notice her child was searching for her too.

    This is common. So many more mothers have told me the same thing. And they feel guilty for referring to themselves as their children’s mother because they don’t want to be disrespectful to their children’s adoptive parents because they did all the work.

    It just irks me that people can say that women like that one are are not mothers because they were not the one raising the baby. Seriously Adoptive Parents are calling themselves Mom and Dad before the ink was dry on the adoption paperwork way before they do any of the boo-boo kissing and prom dress making that is whas so many claim as the reason they are real parents and dna is worthless.

  3. Philip Cohen says:

    Charles Murray wrote in 1993: “Those who prattle about the importance of keeping children with their biological mothers may wish to spend some time in a patrol car or with a social worker seeing what the reality of life with welfare-dependent biological mothers can be like.” http://familyinequality.wordpress.com/2012/02/14/charles-murray/

  4. Marilynn, I’ve not read as many stories as you have about adoption situations like this; does your heart ever stop breaking when you talk to these people? I’m not sure mine would.

    Philip, are you agreeing with Charles Murray’s quote?

  5. Mark Diebel says:

    Thanks Elizabeth for posting this story which reflects acts not unique to the down under.

    Philip – what has the quote to do with the story? Spell it out.

  6. marilynn says:

    No my heart never stops breaking for the parents or the children of families separated for whatever reason. Even, sir, when it’s someone’s fault for doing something neglectful and egregious. My heart still breaks for all of them and its always best for the parent to try to turn things around and start meeting their parental obligations. It does not make up for time lost but then time lost does not erase your debt completely either. Just because they failed for to be a good parent for the last 20 years does not mean they should continue to fail for the next 40. That makes no sense at all. Its entirely up to their adult offspring whether or not to acknowledge attempts that seem a day late and a dollar short. When you owe someone something you have to pay that debt whether or not you ever get a proper thank you.

    Most people that loose custody of their children because of being drug addicts or because of being abusive are not actually ever convicted of any crime where they are proven to be drug addicts or proven to be abusive. In fact most are never charged with any crime at all. Most are never given an opportunity to prove their innocence in a real trial with a defense attorney. You’d think if they were going tri a person for a crime that would cost the kid a parent the least they could do is give the parent a public defender. No. Parents loose their children over accusations of abuse or neglect all the time. Kid’s call CPS on their parents if they are spanked or if they don’t get the toy they want. Neighbors call CPS on parents because their cat keeps sh*ting in their yard and they are annoyed or because they keep parking over their driveways or some other hatfield and mccoy neighbor trifle.

    Separating families interferes with that performance of duty by the parents. People are owed the attention protection and support of the people who reproduced to create them. If a person is going to interfere with that performance of duty by a parent they’d better have a damn good reason and they’d better plan to unblock performance when its possible to do so. That’s how I see it anyway.