Giving Birth to New Life: Part 2

July 28th, 2011

Olson FamilyWe have all heard the words before 'you are just like your mother' or 'you are your father's son'. When you hear those words said it is usually meant to be a compliment, right? Well, in my world it was quite the opposite, to hear 'you are turning out like your mother' meant I had done something terribly wrong...those words still send shooting pains to my stomach. So you can imagine that when I found out I was pregnant, out of wedlock, I anticipated those words rolling off the lips of my father. To my shock he didn't even mention it, in fact he didn't have much to say at all. Over the course of my pregnancy my father and step-mother seemed… [more]

Giving Birth to New Life – Part One

July 26th, 2011

coffeeIt’s 6:45am and I wake suddenly to the sound of a motorcycle screaming past our bedroom window…WAIT…6:45am!!! I am late! You see, on a typical work day I am already loaded up with my morning cup of coffee, my purse, my husband and three year old chasing me out to my car to give me my morning well wishes and kisses good-bye. Today though, we somehow put a wrench in that routine and turned off the alarm and the kicker…its Board Meeting day for me. I throw myself together as quickly as I can and rush to seek my husband’s approval to assure me that I don’t look like I got ready in 15 minutes, grab my cup of coffee and race… [more]

If You Need Evidence of the Lack of Progress

September 15th, 2008

So often when I'm arguing ethical adoption, reform and the prevailing issues behind those two things, I hear something alone these lines: Single parenting is widely accepted today. Mothers are no longer stigmatized by society to place their babies. That's all a myth. I argue that their belief that this is all a myth is, in fact, a myth. But they never believe me. They say things like, "Look how far we've come!" And I say, "It's not far enough." And they continue to argue that we have made so much progress. That mothers who choose to parent their children at young ages are no longer stigmatized and stereotyped. They tune me out. They ignore me. And then I read the stuff that the comments of this post

Sunday Secrets: Talk of Pregnancies

August 31st, 2008

There was no outright adoption speak in today's installment of Sunday Secrets over at Post Secret. But there were two that really caught my eye with regard to the subjects I write about on this blog. First off, we have this one. Pregnant women remind me of my failures. One should note, if you didn't look at the postcard, it looks like a male in a woman's dress with a pregnant belly. All the same, I can really resonate with that statement. Especially in that first year post-placement, seeing pregnant women or young children really made me feel horrible. To be very honest, I felt even worse about myself (and, as such, slightly judgmental) if the expectant mother was younger than me. I've thankfully… [more]

Not So Smart

June 19th, 2008

If you've read here for any length of time, you know that I promote education to young mothers, believing that most can parent their child. While I don't believe that all teens are ready and/or capable, I believe that there are great teen parents. But, I've got to say, this particular news story caught me off guard. Seventeen teens are pregnant at a high school in Massachusetts. That's quadruple their normal pregnancy rate. Quadruple. Four times. And, sadly, no, it wasn't a case of a bad batch of condoms. No. Instead the group of girls, none of whom is older than sixteen, made a pact to get pregnant and "raise their children together." It's like their very own little commune! But stupid. I'm not sure why… [more]

What About This is Fun?

April 7th, 2008

While searching my news and blog alerts this morning, I came across a blog entry that I will not link because I don't want the potential adoptive mother involved to be flamed. But what she said caught me so off guard that I needed to write about it. Recently matched with an expectant mother considering placement, the potential adoptive mother described the process as "fun." Fun. My first response was, "What about this is fun for the expectant mother?" While pregnancy itself is an amazing and beautiful time, full of new experiences that could be classified as fun if the entire situation wasn't full of ambiguity, confusion and fear for those experiencing an unplanned pregnancy and considering placement. Then I thought back to my own experience. Matching… [more]

Proof of the Long-Standing Stigmas

March 22nd, 2008

Is it 2008? Because this article just transported me back fifty-or-so years. It also further proves a point that many of today's birth mothers are saying: stigmas against single mothers are still alive and well. Mothers who have relinquished in the past twenty years are often told that they don't know what it was like "back in the day." And I agree, to a point. While very few young mothers are now shipped off to homes and hidden from the public to relinquish their children in secret and silence, the social stigmas of single parenting are alive and well and, sadly, thriving. "But we've come so far." Really? Have we? Read that article and tell me that you think society views single parents in a… [more]

Facing Those He Offended

February 22nd, 2008

I told you about the Colorado Representative that referred to young, unmarried pregnant mothers as sluts. I urged those of you who lived in Colorado to go ahead and write letters. I wasn't the only one urging those offended to write. A group of teen mothers from the Florence Crittendon School in Colorado wrote to Larry Liston. And, guess what? He read them. Not only did he read them. He went to the school for pregnant and parenting teens. (I'm shocked, too.) Whether it was a publicity stunt to fix his reputation, based on curiosity about these young mothers or simply because he felt like a heel, it looks as though some good may have come from the meeting. In this amazingly written article

Yes, These are the Stigmas that Haunt Us

February 11th, 2008

Just in case you think it's a bunch of hullabaloo that unwed mothers (and fathers) are made to feel negatively about their situations, take a look at this mess coming out of Colorado. That's right. You read that right. A lawmaker called unmarried, pregnant teenagers (and the fathers) "sluts." Pick your jaw up off the floor. Representative Larry Liston laid it all on the line with the following comments. "In my parents' day and age, (unmarried teen parents) were sent away, they were shunned, they were called what they are," Colorado Springs Republican Rep. Larry Liston said during the meeting in Denver. "There was at least a sense of shame." "I think it's wrong. They're sluts. And I don't mean just the women. I mean the men… [more]

What Do I Want to Tell an Expectant Mother?

January 11th, 2008

I'm stumped. I can't find the right words. How often does that happen for me? Rarely. I've always got something to say. And yet, right now, I'm just at a loss. You see, I got an e-mail from an expectant mother. I'm the first one she has told that she is pregnant. And she wants advice. I don't know what to say. Her situation sounds so familiar to my own. And yet she's reaching out ahead of time for the advice that I wasn't privy to while I was pregnant due to circumstances out of my control at the time. I have this possibility to help someone in ways that I wasn't helped, to guide in ways that I wasn't guided. And I don't know where to begin. I feel… [more]