Adoption: Giving It All Away?
Kathryn Joyce got it right in “Shotgun Adoption” [Sept. 14]. I am a partial victim of the crisis pregnancy centers. As a young unwed mother with no outside support, I turned to New Hope here in Seattle. They counseled me with one option: an open adoption so my son would have a life I couldn’t provide. But the “open adoption/access to my son/co-parenting” was essentially a closed adoption. What I found out later was I had no legal rights to my son.
My life has been full, varied, abundant and challenging, but this by far has been the hardest aspect to reconcile. I am grateful for the work of many brave people who speak the truth of the deep loss, guilt and shame that we birth mothers involved with adoption experience.
Falls Church, Va.
We at Origins-USA thank you for the thorough and insightful “Shotgun Adoption.” It goes a long way toward educating the public on what’s really going on in many adoption businesses. Antiabortion Christian groups, however, are not the only organizations that use trickery to induce vulnerable young women to surrender their babies. I gave up my son in 1990 to a nonreligious nonprofit that similarly used “counseling” to pressure mothers into adoption. I was strongly dissuaded from any attempt to keep my baby and constantly told to think of adoption surrender as my only option. Origins-USA (origins-usa.org), a nonprofit, tax-exempt corporation led by mothers who have lost children to adoption, advocates for the natural right of mothers to nurture their children and for keeping families together.
Kathryn Joyce gave a good description of unwanted pregnancy in the “Baby Scoop Era” (1945-73). I am a birth mother; my son was born in 1969. It has affected me, and others around me, my whole life. Thank you for putting into print what the public never hears about adoption.
As the Pennsylvania chair of the Republican Majority for Choice, I have heard countless tales of crisis pregnancy centers and the tactics they use to shame and manipulate women. Women in these situations should be supported no matter the choice they make, and extremists manipulating their vulnerability for profit is disgusting. These organizations and the horror stories they produce may scare women into not considering adoption. It is clear that legislation should be enacted nationally, protecting women from organizations that not only deceive but rob them of their rights as women and mothers.
It was so sad to hear that there are women being coerced to choose adoption for their children when they prefer to parent. As an adoptive parent and member of an adoptive parent support group, I know that none of us would ever want to have any part in a situation like that. We desire to be parents, but not at the cost of a woman being coerced.