Jump to content

Picking & Choosing


Guest Great social worker

Recommended Posts

I just found this article and may have placed it in the wrong place earlier. It seems to fit better here:

Redbook Adoption Article

Daryn

Edited by gtteacherinsa
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 5 weeks later...
  • Replies 193
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

We hear "he looks just like you!" ALL THE TIME. I usually just smile and don't offer any information, but recently his caretaker at daycare mentioned what a "distinct combination" he was of me and St

Somebody at the store the other day had a baby Charlie's age and the babies were interacting when he looked quizzically at Craig and I and said "wow, your baby has some wild hair" (my thought - OKAY

Please be very truthful about what you will (or won't) be open to, when you're filling out your inquiry and your application paperwork! Abrazo makes very careful decisions about whom to invite to ori

I'm not sure if this fits here or not, but found it interesting. It does speak to "picking and choosing" of a different sort.

The TimesDecember 15, 2007

Designer baby fear over heart gene test

Mark Henderson, Science Editor

A British couple have won the right to test embryos for a gene that leads to high cholesterol levels and an increased risk of heart attacks, The Times has learnt.

The decision by the fertility watchdog will reopen controversy over the ethics of designer babies, as it allows doctors to screen embryos for a condition that is treatable with drugs and can be influenced by lifestyle as well as genes.

While the procedure is designed to detect a rare version of a disease called familial hypercholesterolaemia (FH), which often kills children before puberty, it will also identify a milder form that can be controlled by drugs and diet.

Critics argue that the test will allow couples to destroy embryos that would have had a good chance of becoming children with fulfilling and reasonably healthy lives.

Related Links

Designer baby to beat risk of Alzheimer’s

Babies to be 'designed' to escape breast cancer

The test will also create an unprecedented moral dilemma for some couples, as it could show that they have produced no embryos completely unaffected by the disease. This would force them to decide whether to implant embryos that they know have a genetic risk of premature heart disease and death, or to throw them away and deny them a chance of life.

Britain’s first licence to test embryos for FH will be awarded next week to Paul Serhal, of University College Hospital in London, by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA).

Its decision breaks new ground because it permits Mr Serhal to screen out not only the severe form of the condition but also the milder type, which is usually treatable.

Embryo screening has previously been approved only for disorders in which a gene invariably causes a serious disease, or for conditions such as breast cancer in which mutations carry an 80 per cent lifetime risk.

FH occurs in two forms. The more common version, heterozygous FH, affects 1 in 500 people. It is caused by a single mutated gene, which raises cholesterol and thus the risk of hardened arteries, heart disease and stroke. It can usually be managed with statin drugs and diet.

One in 250,000 people inherits two defective copies of the gene and develops homozygous FH, which is much more serious. Sufferers show severely elevated cholesterol from the age of 5, and can suffer angina by 6 or 7. Many die in childhood, and most have suffered at least one heart attack by the end of their twenties.

Mr Serhal’s patients, who are in their thirties, both have the milder heterozygous FH. They discovered their status only when they had a daughter, now 5, with the homozygous form, and they also have an unaffected son.

They said yesterday that they were delighted. “We had no idea that we both carried a gene for high cholesterol until the double gene was expressed in our first child. We are very lucky that our child has responded so well to the very high-dose drug regime. We have been led to understand that other children with the same double gene may not be so lucky.”

The couple, who approached Mr Serhal after learning that he was offering the pre-implantation genetic diagnosis test for a breast cancer gene, will have IVF next month, even though they are naturally fertile.

A single cell will be removed from each embryo at the eight-cell stage, and be tested for defective FH genes. Any that have homozygous FH will be discarded. The test will also determine whether the remaining embryos are completely clear of FH, or whether they have the heterozygous form. There may be none that are unaffected, leaving the couple with a difficult ethical decision.

Mr Serhal said: “This obnoxious disease can cause cardiovascular accidents at a very young age. Ideally, we will find embryos with no FH genes, but it is possible we will not and it will be up to the patients to choose. Some people would think twice about using embryos that they know have a risky gene, and others would say you shouldn’t screen out a condition that can be managed so people can live with it. It will be an awkward choice.”

Mr Serhal said that the HFEA had also indicated that it would be prepared to sanction screening for the milder form of FH alone for couples in which one partner was a carrier and the other was not, though he was not yet proposing to do such screening.

Have your say

While it it admirable that the parents wish to keep their child from suffering with the severe form of high cholesterol, isn't it pathetic that people think that life is not worth living if one is born with a high cholesterol disorder? Think of it. Here is the couple with the child who has the severe form of high cholesterol and they are controlling the disease well and the child is doing quite well. They would be murdering a human being if they took away their child's life. However, if an embryo, who would grow to be genetically similar to their child, were alive they would be allowed to kill that child who is simply at an earlier stage of growth. This is total lunacy! To characterize human life as valuable or not because the person has a disease, is like a life made up of waiting around for one's genetically predisposed diseases to manifest themselves. If this is what a scientifically examined life and scientifically prudential decisions entail they are monsterous values.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I hate to see these kinds of things. I often wish (hateful I know) that something untestable goes wrong with the "perfect" offspring (like bad attitude, mean personality, etc.).

There are so many things we can't control in life. I really think it's too much pressure on the unborn to test them for every little thing and reject them if they aren't perfect. We all know people that would not be on this planet if such tests were conducted years ago, and what would our world be like then?

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 4 weeks later...

Update: please note that Abrazo is rarely able to accomodate applicants with inflexible gender preferences, so those who are truly limited to acceptance of one gender only are better advised to seek services elsewhere.

As discussed elsewhere, Abrazo has no means of guaranteeing sex preference, except for families adopting older children already born. Most of the mothers with whom we work do not know the baby's gender before matching, and it is not ever appropriate for a baby and placement plan to be abandoned in a delivery room just because the baby was not the "right" gender at birth. Sonograms are not always a reliable indicator of sex, and cannot always be done in advance of matching, due to circumstances beyond any agency's control.

Finally, it is inconceivable to most birthfamilies that anybody incapable of achieving a pregnancy, who longs to parent someone else's child via adoption, would arbitrarily reject any baby based solely on his or her gender, therefore, most prospective birthparents in open adoptions are wary of choosing adoptive families with inflexible gender requirements.

Abrazo's inquiry and application will continue to ask whether or not prospective clients have solid gender preferences, as a means of identifying who is or is not best-suited to our program. However, this should not be misconstrued as an indication that the agency supports these preferences nor does it guarantee the agency's ability to fulfill them in any way.

Link to post
Share on other sites
As discussed elsewhere, Abrazo has no means of guaranteeing sex preference, except for families adopting older children already born. Most of the mothers with whom we work do not know the baby's gender before matching, and it is not ever appropriate for a baby and placement plan to be abandoned in a delivery room just because the baby was not the "right" gender at birth. Sonograms are not always a reliable indicator of sex, and cannot always be done in advance of matching, due to circumstances beyond any agency's control.

Please say that Abrazo has never had this happen, in the delivery room???? I do not even know how to respond to this actually happening, for parents and the newly born.

Do you think that maybe parents-in-waiting consider gender preference (as a right) right along with medical risks/conditions that they are willing to accept, thinking they have the power to choose?...when the two are very different. The inherent risk in matching and adopting a newborn is... gender may not be known until birth (how exciting is that?) and medical needs may or may not be known, or become known until much later in the baby's life. There are no guarantees when you are talking about human life.

Pre-existing medical conditions (in-utero and at birth) are certainly understandable for adopting parents to consider (ahead of time) in trying to determine if they can truly provide what baby needs most... according to his/her medical assessments and whether or not you, as parents, are the best fit to provide for baby.

Gender has nothing to do with being the best parent you can be to your baby. Does it?

Karen

Link to post
Share on other sites
Please say that Abrazo has never had this happen, in the delivery room????

Sadly, yes-- we have seen folks abandon a match, after the baby that was born was not the gender they'd expected (or desired) and it's grueling for the birthparent(s) and staff when it does happen, although we've seen this much less often in recent years. (I think Abrazo has gotten better at educating clients as to why this is really not ethically acceptable, although it certainly is legally within every adopter's right as they see fit.)

Do you think that maybe parents-in-waiting consider gender preference (as a right) right along with medical risks/conditions that they are willing to accept, thinking they have the power to choose?

Absolutely. And to be perfectly honest, I can't say I would see it any differently if I were adopting. Adoptive parents do have the power to choose; the question is whether their exercising of that choice truly is in the best interests of the child being adopted (or not adopted, as the case may be.)

Gender has nothing to do with being the best parent you can be to your baby. Does it?

Frankly, I think there are people who do believe that parental ability can be limited to one gender or another. But oftentimes, I think folks who say that are underestimating themselves (or using their reported limitations simply to rationalize personal preferences.)

Single parents often feel qualified only to raise a child of their own gender, but the truth is that they would be equally awesome parents to a child of the opposite gender, as well.

Sometimes, people who've survived an abusive relationship with a parent of their own gender feel more at ease parenting a child of the opposite gender, but the child's gender isn't really at issue at all; the parent's history is.

And often, families with one or more children of one gender already dream of adopting a child only of the same-- or different-- gender, but I can think of plenty of families out there who ended up relinquishing those expectations and ending up, miraculously, with exactly the "right" baby-- who, by chance, was exactly opposite of the gender they thought they needed most.

(So be it! What's that old joke? "If you want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans...")

Link to post
Share on other sites
Absolutely. And to be perfectly honest, I can't say I would see it any differently if I were adopting. Adoptive parents do have the power to choose; the question is whether their exercising of that choice truly is in the best interests of the child being adopted (or not adopted, as the case may be.)

That grates on me. I know some AP's feel more entitled than BP's, but it makes me angry. I am no more entitled to choose the gender of my adopted child than I would be if she were born to me. I can't choose what abilities she has (or doesn't ), her personality, or her IQ. BP's don't get that privilege either. If biological parents could choose all those things, there wouldn't be any diversity in the world. Everyone would be smart, sweet, and BORING.

I surely hope anyone that had the gall to walk out on a match in the delivery room were unceremoniously dropped from Abrazo's rosters.

Children are a BLESSING NOT A RIGHT! Raise em to the best of your ability, love them more than you should, and give glory to God every day that they are in your life.

Quit quibbling over what type of blessing suites you best.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Amen Tina!!!! You read my mind and voiced it so much better than I could have ever done!!!!

Link to post
Share on other sites

While I also think that it is unimaginable that a family would walk out on a baby because of gender- I wonder if it isn't a sign of unresolved issues regarding infertility and adoption. Sometimes the adoption process can be very stressful and frustrating, especially when one is thinking- why do I have to justify myself as a parent when most of the rest of the world doesn't- simply because they can get pregnant. To be honest, I can remember having that thought. I can also see how that would translate into "I have the right to choose things about this child that I wouldn't be able to if I gave birth" almost as a way of making up for the fact that I can't give birth. Once again, I don't think that this is a good attitude to walk into adoption with- but I can understand where it comes from.

One interesting thing that I thought of the other day when someone was asking me about adoption was this- while originally I was not sure that I should have to justify myself as being a good parent- now I often wonder if everyone shouldn't have to go through a process like we do before they have children. Not that I am a big fan on limiting civil liberties, but when I see what children go through at the hands of their parents or guardians (adoptive AND birth), I do have to wonder.

Just a few thoughts.

Bobbi

Edited by MFTMOM
Link to post
Share on other sites

I can see the point of view where people want a "custom ordered" child. There were times past that it was touted that way, and I think it has been hard to move beyond people thinking of it that way, or in doing such a great thing for a child "in need."

We struggled early on, but decided that we would let God handle that part of things and we became very open to the different possibilities with a placement. I think that it was Monday or Tuesday before we left on Tuesday afternoon before I ever thought to ask if Nichole was healthy or if there was anything we needed to prepare for. I am sure had there been anything major the ladies at Abrazo would have let us know, but we knew that Nichole was meant to be ours and therefore we were busting to get to her.

I have said it elsewhere and several times before, but we couldn't have guaranteed health in our biological child, nor could we have requested a certain gender. Seeing God's miracle is amazing and we are so fortunate to be a part of it in some way. I hope that those coming in and those waiting search their hearts for an openness that they haven't known before. We did, and I am so thankful for it.

Link to post
Share on other sites

(So be it! What's that old joke? "If you want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans...")

Yep, we have two different sets of family friends that "kept trying for a girl" and both families have 5 boys under the age of eight! :lol::P

Link to post
Share on other sites
(So be it! What's that old joke? "If you want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans...")

Yep, we have two different sets of family friends that "kept trying for a girl" and both families have 5 boys under the age of eight! :lol::P

:lol: My parents were never 'trying' for one over the other, though they hoped for a girl in the mix. They stopped when the 4th boy delivered was 10lbs 10 oz :blink::lol:

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a different "take" on the choosing thing. With my 1st adoption - I was OPEN to everything - color, health issues, premie, sex of the baby, age ( up to 3yrs old) openess, drug exposure, unknown birth father, legal risk - it didn't matter - I wanted to consult and think about each situation as presented. I thru my "hat" in the ring on just about everthing that I was consulted on ( about 10 different situations) with the exception of one 23 week premie little girl that God called home all too soon , I said show my profile.

However for my 2nd adoption I was MUCH more selective - I only wanted a full or 1/2 African American child of either sex and was strongly encouraging an open relationship. I was still open to everything else BUT I really believed that the race of a 2nd sibling was important. I just felt that Gabriel shouldn't be the only child of color in this family and that having to kids with the same ethic background would allow them to similiar expereinces

Link to post
Share on other sites

I would have to say that 'Race' would be a different category when it comes to picking and choosing. My reason is that 'Race' is a factor that for the most part can be controlled within those having biological children, as well as in adoption. I say for the most part because I know that there are exceptions to every rule. I have my own, sometimes conflicting thoughts and feelings about picking and choosing when it comes to race, but it does seem to elicit different reasoning than picking and choosing along other lines. I suppose age would be a similarly different construct- in that adoption is really the only way in which choice is involved in the age of your children.

Just a thought.

Link to post
Share on other sites
(So be it! What's that old joke? "If you want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans...")

Well, if anyone has read any of our posts regarding our journey to our son Brennan....you'll know that God really had a good laugh at us!

Honestly, we were about as inflexible on gender as anyone could be (don't even get Elizabeth started....if anyone deserves an opportunity to do an "I told ya so, told ya so, told ya told ya told ya so" dance...she certainly does) (don't think we would have walked out of a delivery room, I'm sure I would have drawn the line there) and God, Abrazo, and our dear precious sweet Meg brought the other love our life to us (our daughter Kayleigh being the other other one) and our lives just couldn't have unfolded any better with any other child and any other birthmother. We "thought" we were supposed to bring another daughter into our family, we "thought" it would be best for us and for Kayleigh but Kayleigh, her mommy, and her daddy all will emphatically say that our son Brennan is exactly who we were supposed to welcome into our lives - he is it! Not to mention his special birthmother Meg who we would have missed out on had we not changed our minds (with some encouragement from the big "E") on the gender thing - can't imagine my life without Meg being a part of it...and sure can't imagine it without our Brennan.

Trust me - the gender thing - not something to pick and choose...take it from someone who's been there. It just isn't. I'll have my crow over easy please....yum, doesn't it taste good? :)

Lisa

P.S. If ya want a good laugh, here's a link to our 2nd adoption journey The Cornish Chronicle

Link to post
Share on other sites

I was stuck on gender also but gave in and took into consideration each case presented to us. We talked to so many birthmothers I lost count. I had in my mind the perfect baby, hispanic to match our first daughter, infant and of course a boy. Well during our waiting period my heart was pryed open little by little and it led us to the perfect baby that the Lord intended for us. Beautiful baby Brayden who is part AA. I love being a rainbow family! :D Never say never.

Heather

Link to post
Share on other sites
I would have to say that 'Race' would be a different category when it comes to picking and choosing. My reason is that 'Race' is a factor that for the most part can be controlled within those having biological children, as well as in adoption. I say for the most part because I know that there are exceptions to every rule. I have my own, sometimes conflicting thoughts and feelings about picking and choosing when it comes to race, but it does seem to elicit different reasoning than picking and choosing along other lines. I suppose age would be a similarly different construct- in that adoption is really the only way in which choice is involved in the age of your children.

Just a thought.

I am not really sure if I agree with this - I think being race specific should be in the same category as the rest- after all most AP's are not open to children of all races. And just becasue I was open to only children of African American decent doesn't make my choices any "better" than anyone else......I need to think some more on this subject <_<:ph34r:

Link to post
Share on other sites
Children are a BLESSING NOT A RIGHT! Raise em to the best of your ability, love them more than you should, and give glory to God every day that they are in your life.

Quit quibbling over what type of blessing suites you best.

I love this, Tina! Thanks for saying it so perfectly!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Heidi,

I probably should have clarified. When I said that choosing race was probably different than choosing gender, I meant that I wonder if people's motivations for wanting to make a gender choice are different than their motivations for wanting to make a race choice- I wasn't really commenting on whether or not people should be able to make those choices or whether or not they should be commended for being more open or not- completely different line of thought. But I think that my original posts were confusing because I blended discussions of both :blink:

I guess one of the reasons that I think that there may be different motivations is that there seem to be so many more adopters who have race preferences than gender preferences- and when I hear people explain their rationale for both- they appear to be different (perhaps coming from different places). But overall, I am only speculating- I really have nothing to back up my thoughts. So what do you think?

As far as whether people should be able to choose- once again everytime I think that I know what I think- someone makes a good point that I need to consider (especially when I think about people's choices in terms of race and their family and their beliefs. However, my struggle with the original post was the idea of someone walking away in the delivery room because the gender was not what was expected.

I would love to hear your thoughts!

Bobbi

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 months later...

Runyan raised an interesting question on one of the Rainbow Family Topics, which warranted additional discussion, here:

This brings up a question for me....if a person is willing to adopt a child based on the CHANCE that the baby is biracial....why aren't they willing to be open to... AA period? Is it a worst case scenario for them? If so...should they be allowed to even have a chance at matching with them knowing how they feel?

Her query came up in another context, but it makes for an interesting moral dilemma, which arises often for adoption agencies in the southwestern U.S.: if someone is open to a child of Anglo/Hispanic descent, but not full Hispanic, or Anglo/African-American but not full African-American, or Anglo/Asian but not full Asian, or Anglo/Indian but not full Indian, what is that saying about their ability to fully embrace all of who that child is, culturally?

Doesn't that potentially say to an adopted child: you were only lovable to us because you were just half of what you are? Or is this a matter of protecting children's best interests by enabling adopters to reject children whom they will not fully embrace and therefore would not parent well?

Should agencies' policies do away with allowing families to specify "part" ethnicities, in their preferences? Why or why not?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Good question. ;) I think the couple should be able to embrace the full race. I say that now because we were one of those couples in the beginning who were hesitant. Thanks for all the education I have gotten on the Forum and from the Big guy upstairs. I now know that you just have to jump in and do it and you won't regret it. :)

Heather

Link to post
Share on other sites

That's a great question Elizabeth - I wonder if that type of format is even possible. I imagine that it might apeal more to birth families - since it implies that a AP would embarce the child no matter the race - or if the race of the child could not be determined or might be assumed. But I think many PIW feel an sense of entitlement - I didn't get to have a child of my "flesh" so I should at least have a say in the process that matches me with the child of my heart. I think it might be very difficult for most to just let the process happen and trust that you can rasie the child you are entrusted with.

Link to post
Share on other sites
But I think many PIW feel an sense of entitlement - I didn't get to have a child of my "flesh" so I should at least have a say in the process that matches me with the child of my heart. I think it might be very difficult for most to just let the process happen and trust that you can rasie the child you are entrusted with.

But is this always a good thing and something that should be encouraged? Shouldn't we give them the resources & education neccessary to realize why this isn't accepted? I understand that it's nice to have a say in adoption, that with adoption, it does come with the added benefit of being able to choose. But if adoption is for the child, doesn't that child have the RIGHT to have parents that are 100% comfortable with ALL thier races that make them who they are?

I don't think that we should MAKE all potential aparents be open to EVERY race (though that would be amazing...but not possible...I mean what does race matter anyways? The child isn't going to be your exact match anyways...so does it really matter HOW they are different? I degress...) But as transracial parent, I understand it isn't for everyone.

But with not allowing "1/2 or 1/4 or 1/8 or 1/90 (lol)" this is just saying "You are either open to a race completely, or not at all". I think that would make aparents THINK about why they aren't open to a child of a FULL race. Make them truley ponder about what makes them so uncomfortable with it and why.

I know for my dh, he was just open to biracial when he first opened up to AA race, I told him no way no how. That if he wasn't open to full AA then we aren't open to AA at all. There is no in between, either you are comfortable with raising a child of AA heritage or your aren't. He took time to think about it and he made a complete 180...it wasn't pretty finding those inner racist feelings that society puts in us. But really what the heck does it matter if the child is part white anyways? Does that make them LESS black or LESS white? Not in my opinion...it just adds another race to thier "mix-up". It's like having two grandma's or one. Do you say "this is my half grandma"?

Just thinking out loud on a very slow work day...LOL

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...