Monday, September 15, 2008

"Abortion Not Adoption" the Mantra of the GOP

Officially, Firstmother Forum is not taking a position on the upcoming presidential race, but there are issues raised and comments made by people running that deserve our attention--and form our opinions. Such as: during the interview with her good friend at ABC, Charlie, Sarah Palin made a quick reference to adoption in lieu of abortion. Any mother worth her hormones knows that the two are not interchangeable.

Senator McCain also made the same statement at another time. Both candidates are opposed to abortion to varying degrees. Sarah Palin, the veep choice of McCain, would only allow it if the mother's life were in danger; McCain, I believe, is a wee bit more liberal. Perhaps you can get an abortion if you were raped.

Abortion is either a simple procedure not involving a crisis of conscience, or a morally difficult solution. But it is final. It has a beginning and an end. It is not a living death with out peace, as is giving up a child--particularly in a closed adoption. Given the emotional fallout after the heated discussion with the aforementioned Aston(I became physically ill by the end of the week), I took to re-reading parts of the Donaldson Report on birth parents and came upon these words on Page 50:

...Birthmothers in fully disclosed adoptions (all parties share their identities) had significantly better grief resolution than those in confidential adoptions at both the first and second follow-up periods of [the study].

Paraphrasing here, the study goes on to say that at approximately eight years after "placement," only 30 percent of the women had a good or very good level of "grief resolution" in closed adoptions (as in the case of Jane, Linda and myself, the three bloggers here ) and 25 percent of the women involved in "time-limited mediated" adoptions which I presume means a limited period of time when one gets news of the placement but without contact or the names of the adopters; and "ongoing mediated," 52 percent had good or very good grief resolution; and fully disclosed (which I would take to mean an open adoption), 68 percent.

That means that 70 percent of the women who were forced into, or given no choice, or agreed to a "closed adoption" have poor grief resolution eight years after the relinquishment. Sounds like a pretty poor rate of success, for the life-givers.

More than a dozen years ago I wrote about the first Bush advocating "adoption not abortion" an op-ed that was picked up by newspapers around the country. That was about crack/AIDS babies; I didn't get into the unresolved grief of the person who gave life to the baby. Because, as most of us are aware, in the minds of many--if not most of the people who have not walked in our shoes--the emotional turmoil and long-time grief that we suffer is too effin' bad. When I was having that dust-up with Aston, I said something about how adoptive parents really wish us dead; he demurred, but I was right. They do want us dead. If they don' t think about that literally, they certainly want us dead figuratively. They don't want to have to deal with us, or the idea of us coming back. They want us gone. Forever.

And the other day I happened to catch Barack Obama on the tube answering a similar question about children, and I swear to god, I heard him say that the country needed to provide support for mothers who wanted to keep their children.

There you have it.

---lorraine

1 comment:

Being Me said...

I heard him say it too. I may be scrambling for crumbs. But crumbs are so much better than being kicked to the curb.

Five years after 'relinquishing' and nearly a college graduate I had an abortion. The horrible effects of aborting were unknown to me until I experienced them. Still they were nothing compared to the ongoing grief of closed adoption. I wonder how that balances out, the grief of adoption motivating me to get an abortion.