Why Solicitation to Obtain Babies for Adoption Must be Outlawed

Soliciting healthy infants from loving mothers by means of “Dear Birthmother” letters and other tactics is causing lifelong trauma to children and families. All such practices must be ended.

Marion, IA (PRWEB) August 24, 2004 -- Frequently in the news in the United States are reports of prospective adopters who are devastated when a mother decides to keep her own son or daughter.

These people have worked so hard in their attempt to obtain a healthy infant. They have read the how-to books and articles. They have hired someone to generate a “Dear Birthmother” letter for them, a slick advertisement that makes them sound flawless and would make almost any mother, especially one experiencing morning sickness and other effects of pregnancy, question her own abilities. Some prospective adopters have an agency or lawyer advertising, withholding information, making promises, denying any sort of real help and pressuring a mother until she surrenders her parental rights. Other prospective adopters approach a pregnant mother personally, making false promises of continuing contact between the child and her mother, siblings and other relatives in an attempt to obtain her child.

Many prospective adopters or agency personnel try to be present for the birth of “their” child, knowing their presence will make it harder for a mother to say no and disappoint them. Others go to the hospital afterwards to pressure a mother still exhausted from labor.

And then, she decides to keep her child. After all that work, it’s a tremendous disappointment.

Many agency personnel or individuals continue to pressure a mother even after she says “no”. Surely quite a few must already know about the attachment and other problems an adoptee may experience throughout their lives, not to mention the serious lifelong effects on mothers who have lost a child to adoption.    

This solicitation for babies must be outlawed. It’s not only anxiety-producing for prospective adopters, but it provides no protection for the best interests of a child or of natural family members. The rights of parents and the needs of a child must come before the desires of prospective adopters.

It’s illegal in most states to separate a new puppy or a kitten from her mother. Human infants deserve the same protection.

In “Attachment And Separation: What Everyone Should Know” Dr. Peter Cook wrote,“Infants may develop attachments to other members of the family or carers, who can take mother's place for a while. But if mother does not return soon, some infants can become quite distressed, with crying and an increase of behaviors designed to bring the mother and infant together again. If the separation lasts for some days, the first state of crying and 'protest' may be replaced by a mood of quiet unhappiness or despair...It is painful to go on experiencing such hurt, angry and even depressed feelings, and eventually the infant may pass into a state which has been termed 'detachment'."

James W. Prescott, Ph.D. and associates discovered in the 1960s and 1970s that lack of affectionate, intimate contact between mothers and infants during the most sensitive periods of brain growth may result in permanent brain abnormalities associated with juvenile and adult patterns of depression, substance abuse, eating disorders, aggression and violence.

Nancy Verrier, MA, first brought home her adoptee when she was 3-days old. In “The Primal Wound” Verrier wrote, “My belief was that love would conquer all. What I was not prepared for was that it was easier for us to give her love than it was for her to accept it.”

In “Known Consequences of Separating Mother and Child at Birth and Implications for Further Study,” Wendy Jacobs, B.Sc., B.A. wrote, “Several years ago I had a letter from a woman who had adopted a four-week-old baby (boy) in between the births of her daughter and younger son. She wrote that it came as a very great shock to her to find that her adopted baby did not respond to affection in the way that her other children had done, and that she felt rejected by him. Her adopted (boy) had behavioural problems all his life, was once considered borderline hyperactive, and consistently underachieved at school. He always seemed afraid of something, lacked self-worth, was very demanding and constantly needed reassurance. He committed suicide at the age of 21, after telling a friend that he had seen (the newborn baby boy of his adopters’ daughter) and that he had no feeling for it.”

In the United States, many babies are obtained through coercion or duress. Increasingly many mothers, fathers, grandparents and adoptees are fighting for change so others who may be in a vulnerable situation in the future will be able to keep family members together.

In the words of one mother, Brandy Bottini-Elkins, who is fighting to protect the rights of other families after her own child was taken, “I have watched and read many things over the last several months. For me I laid down my pride, my pain and everything in the name of justice.”

Today, in the United States, when a mother or father asks for a little help with a child, they are made to feel guilty for even asking and their child is taken and given to adopters. Then the adopters get far more help than the family ever would have received. Some adopters enjoy the “help” so much they just keep adopting sometimes ten, fifteen or even more children. While Americans may look down on parents who have even four children of their own saying they can never possibly have the time to really care for them, they laud people who adopt a dozen children who are hurting and in need of special attention. Frequently such adopters neglect the children but they rarely neglect to cash all the adoption subsidy checks.

Some adopters really wanted their own child. When they discover the truth that an unrelated child is not just like their own, they frequently ignore their hurting adoptee’s needs and keep trying to have their own child. They try to mold and change the adoptee, rather than accepting her and appreciating her as she is.

Nearly every mother who goes through nine months of pregnancy and then gives birth wants and loves her child more than anything. She wants to care for her child in the best way possible. She deserves to be provided with honest information and with support as a mother both for the good of her child and as an investment in the future of our country.

Many unmarried mothers and fathers are now keeping and nurturing their children. Grandparents speak of the joy an unexpected grandchild has brought to their lives. Some grandparents become guardians of a grandchild until their daughter is able to take full responsibility. The children have the benefit of their own mother and father, grandparents, aunts, uncles and a whole family to love them.

Outlawing solicitation for babies would be a big step toward protecting the rights of United States citizens and preventing unnecessary separation/adoption trauma. Whether the payment offered a mother is money, pictures or continued contact with her child, or just "feeling good about doing the right thing" the truth is that people soliciting for babies are predators working to tear children away from the mothers and family who otherwise would have kept and nurtured them.


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