Dating the birth mother

By Caroline Leavitt

Published October 3, 2000 7:25PM (EDT)

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This article explains in a way that is more stark than any critic possibly could what is wrong with the advertising for a baby scenario. Think about it: "fudging" the truth? Is the attorney or paralegal or the birth mother also being advised to "fudge" when questions are asked? As the co-author of "The Encyclopedia of Adoption" and the editor of three editions of "Adoption Factbook," I can tell you that any time any person involved in adoption advises you to be anything less than 100 percent honest about any aspect of the adoption situation, you should run, not walk, away.

Thanks to Salon for providing the public with this cautionary and true tale. Unwittingly, perhaps, you have done the couples and singles who are considering adopting through advertisements a great favor.

-- William L. Pierce, Ph.D.
Founding (and former) president, National Council For Adoption
Executive director, International Association of Voluntary Adoption Agencies & NGOs (IAVAAN)

I cannot express to you how angry this article made me. When did adoption become about finding babies for couples? I was under the impression it was about finding parents for children. I resent the entire idea that prospective adoptive parents attempt to manipulate potential birth mothers. Birth mothers need honesty, not P.R., so they can make this heartbreaking decision knowing all the facts.

Birth mothers are not mindless idiots ready to hand their child over to a couple just because of a few pictures in a scrapbook. And they have the right to choose the adoptive parents based on what they know to be true -- not what the adoptive parents want to "fudge" about. Would you entrust your child to the woman who wrote this article based on what she has said here? If you had to place a child for adoption, would you want to be manipulated in this way?

-- Jennifer Cook

By Salon Staff

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