I am not a fan of pre-birth matching. I understand the reasoning behind it, and agree in theory with some of those reasons. I do not like how it currently is practiced. Red flags where boundaries are crossed and manipulations can and do happen. Simple precautions would take away the risk of the mother being coerced or manipulated in her decision once her child is born.
I am against prospective adoptive parents being at the hospital watching the mother go through labor, and even more so when they are in the delivery room. It reeks of entitlement and co-opting of something, that is at it’s fundamental core, is a very private and spiritual event between a mother and her child. A child she has nurtured in her womb for 40 weeks. The birth of your child is one of the most intimate moments of your life, and having an audience, especially the audience who is there because they want your baby cheapens and degrades the experience. It must also damage the ability of mother and child to bond because there is always that elephant in the room. I believe it enhances an atmosphere ripe for manipulation of the mother to ensure the outcome is surrender, rather than parent.
For the hopeful prospective adoptive parents it creates a sense of entitlement that gives way to this mindset BEFORE the papers are signed with words like:
“We allowed the birth family”,
The Birth mother wanted to say goodbye to our baby and we allowed that”,
“She is OUR daughter”,
The statements above which are “edited versions” of ones I read on a blog, that show the level of entitlement/ownership before the mother has even signed papers surrendering her parental rights to the baby. When she couldn’t go through with this there is nothing but sheer unadulterated anger.
I will say it always blows my mind at the lack of empathy coming from those wishing to adopt, many of whom have gone through miscarriages and still-births, but yet, when it comes time for a mother to sign surrender papers and give her baby away and can’t, there is no understanding.
The strength it must take for a vulnerable individual who has just given birth, who has pre-matched and had the prospective adoptive parents attend the birth, to stand up for herself, and say she changed her mind and wants to parent, should be commended and supported. Despite the personal cost to you, the decision should be celebrated because no one wants an adoptee to be created, if the mother wants to parent – right?
I believe that pre-birth matching and having the prospective parents attend the birth has been carefully designed to ensure surrender. Caveat, as I said at the beginning, I think pre-birth matching could be done ethically with safeguards in place.
On another blog – an adoptee / adoptive parent blog, I watched a very disturbing video that I think is important for everyone to view. It made me think of what my mother, and mothers from my era, would have gone through with having no one championing their right to parent, as the first and foremost choice.
If the social worker even suspects the mother wants to parent, the decision should be put on hold, then and there. The papers can always be signed later, there are always options to try, other than surrender. It is the social workers job to protect the rights of the mother – isn’t it?
Sadly, as you can see in the video in the blog post linked below, the social worker is not working for the mother – she hesitates only for a second – before continuing her job of getting the papers signed. I hope you to go to the blog link below and watch the video, and listen carefully when the social worker speaks…Then consider if you would you want your daughter treated like that? Because you know, she is someone’s daughter, and it could one day be your daughter…
P.s. – of course not ALL prospective parents are like this – I hope you the reader already knows I meant that, but reading it I just thought I better clarify that rather than being attacked.