The Debbie Rowe/Michael Jackson story continues to change, hour to hour. Last night Rev. Al Sharpton was on the tube talking about how Rowe, the mother of his children, does not deserve to get them because Michael wanted his 79-year-old mother, or 63-year-old Diana Ross to be their guardian, and that Ms. Rowe really is hardly worth considering.
This morning one "legal expert" on one channel was saying that she has almost no chance of getting the two oldest children--her children--while on another the legal expert was announcing that under California law, she has a very good claim indeed. Jackson's spokesman said that the children did not even know she was their mother [so who did they think was?], and dismissed Rowe as if she were no more than the "reproductive agent" that we at Birth Mother, First Mother Forum have in fact been accused of being to the children we surrendered to adoption. How involved Rowe has been in their lives appears to be little, especially after the divorce six or eight years ago. (FMF blogger does not pretend to be a celebrity hound, so that the exact number of years since the divorce escapes us.)
And then this morning, Rowe's lawyer was saying that she had not yet decided whether or not she will sue for custody. We do not know what kind of mother Ms. Rowe has been, or if, as it has been suggested, she is making noise now to get a better stake of Jackson's assets. But what is making us crazy is that some of Jackson's supporters and others are beginning to slime her. Jackson's former and current PR spokesman dismisses her as if she were not related to the children. He did admit that Jackson restricted visitation to the degree that it "irked" her. One legal expert said that her getting the children were "certainly not in their best interests."
Wait a moment--did anybody notice that Jackson's sainted mother is 79? That Diana Ross may not want to be their guardian-mother? Again, we are not saying that Rowe is a saint, but we do know that a child's real mother (and now we do think that Ms. Rowe supplied more than the womb) has a connection to that child that no one else has. Whether she is the right person to raise them we are not going to say, but we take this moment to speak up for her. As a final note: the two children she is the mother of are 12 and 11, and will almost certainly be asked by the judge in the case whom they would prefer to live with. Their preference will not necessarily decide the case, but should have an impact. The third child, Prince Michael, known as Blanket, has a murkier future, to our mind, as no mother is listed anywhere. Ah, the glories of the new reproductive technologies: a child without a mother! And now, no father!
What comes to FMF's mind is a case that involved two children adopted from Russia by a very wealthy couple who lived in the fabled Hamptons in a multimillion dollar house. The adoptive mother had an affair with one of the contractors working one the house and the couple divorced; the father stayed involved, but the mother had day-to-day custody. The father was apparently killed by the contractor...(he is in jail for the murder), and about a year or two later, the mother died of breast cancer.
The children--twins as I recall, a boy and a girl--were left in the guardianship of their English nanny, whom, as the story went in Vanity Fair, did not treat them well. And what did she do when all was said and done? Send the kids--who were 12 or so by then--to separate boarding schools. This sordid story eventually became a Lifetime movie, but FMF has no idea what happened to the kids, who must be in their late teens by now. Very wealthy, but probably very screwed up.
Yet another happy adoption story. Soon, very soon, FMF will leave this story and return to normal. FMF seems to have a case of Jacksonitis, which is quite surprising as we were never huge fans....as we were the wrong age group to be his groupies.