Another father has been denied parenting his child because of the unethical actions of the mother, the intended adoptive family and the state laws involved. I hate that I have to keep sharing these stories. Some might say, “Well, don’t!” However, when we neglect to address father’s rights, we only allow the actions to continue. Someday I hope that I won’t have to hear of and write things like this one.
In short, here’s what happened.
Mother lies to father and tells him that the baby is stillborn. Mother lies to her own parents and an attorney about knowing the father’s identity. Mother places her child with a family for another state. Father finds out from maternal grandparents about the baby after the child has already been placed. He then started a legal battle to get his child back.
The issues get stickier. Since the mother placed with a family outside her own state of Illinois, the other state’s law’s (South Carolina) are superceding Illinois law. When the Illinois courts ruled, three months after the child was born, that the father was not properly notified and that the child needed to return to the state, the baby was returned when she was eight months old.
So, what went wrong? Just about everything.
Well, the adoptive couple then filed in a South Carolina court. This is where I get outrageously mad. The father wanted his child. But this family decided to go ahead and throw their weight around. And guess what? South Carolina courts, as the adoption laws are different there than Illinois, ruled that the baby needed to be returned to the adoptive family.
But, no. We don’t need adoption reform with laws that are the same across all states. Not at all.
So, the mother and father who were apparently working together (but not living together) on caring for the child did not return the baby. They were found to be in contempt of court. Then, it gets even better. The supposed adoptive parents showed up at the mother’s door, demanding the child back. Great.
In the end, the child is now back with this greedy adoptive family. And, yes, I use the word greedy. The father was lied to about the child’s existence. As soon as he found out, he went about trying to get back his child in a legal fashion. The potential adoptive family should have, at that point, realized that if they decided to “keep” the child, they would have some horrific questions to ask at a later date. But, being greedy, they didn’t seem to care about the rights of the father or the child.
I’m sick of stories like this one. I’m sick of hearing that mothers are lying to fathers about children. I want to sit this lady down and tell her that all of this could have been avoided if she had just been honest. Once. With any of the parties involved. I then want to sit down with this adoptive family and ask them how they plan on having any respect from their child when she gets to be a teenager. They have purposefully and willfully separated their child from a father who wanted to be in her life. I wouldn’t want to deal with the anger that will come from that, especially combined with teenage hormones. Not at all. And I’m sick of states working against each other. This is just another blatantly obvious example of how much adoption reform is needed in our country.
My heart breaks for this father. But, moreso, my heart breaks for this child who will someday learn that her father wanted to be with her and the people who she knows as her parents simply didn’t care enough.