It’s not at all like Madonna’s adoption story. They aren’t talking about this on Oprah, or every news media outlet, but even with just a small almost silent plop in the pond, “Birth Mother Entitled to Visitation with Child Given Up for Adoption” Posted on November 21, 2006 by Daniel Clement has the ability to sure make some waves.

It’s not going to hit the big media. Don’t look for the AP to care, after all it was just the New York Divorce Report, a blog really. But considering that New York has some of the most antiquated adoption laws in the country, and nothing in the way of binding open agreements, this is, in the adoption community, pretty dern groundbreaking. It’s actually huge.

When a woman thinks to place her child for adoption, indeed one of the “carrots” used to entice her that “adoption is the loving option” is the promise of an open relationship with her child. In fact, it is known that though scientific research such as the Mech/Leonard paper actually were used to change the way adoption is viewed by the incoming expectant women to make it seem more becoming of a situation. “Adoption as an Option for Unmarried Pregnant Teens” by Marcia Custer also has the tell tale signs of budding adoption “policy” also know as “how to convince these chicks that living without their babies is fun”. Many agency websites wrongly counsels a prospective mother things like “You choose the amount of contact you would like with your baby.”. When in fact, once the ink is dried and the child is in the hands of the adoptive parents, the natural mother chooses nothing. Adoption agreements are only recognized as legally binding in 13 states and even in these areas, the bias is most certainly in favor of the adoptive parents.

All that aside, many, many a relinquishing mother, does not know this going into the situation, being that they are trusting the “experts” at the caring agencies. So they really do believe that they hold some power and choice . Many have gotten blindsided and felt the stab in the back when the adoptive parents have opted to close the adoption and deny the moms access to their children. Often many will feel totally betrayed as they will say “But I trusted them. I liked them. I wouldn’t have placed Jr. with them if I thought they would do this.” And alas, there is nothing that they can legally do except wait for the child to become and adult and hope that they will meet again someday.

Ah, but not so in New York anymore. Whoever Mary M.O is, my hat goes off to her in great admiration and respect. Thankfully, she had enough determination and the means to pay for legal services as well as the gumption to take this to court and win. That’s another thing that the adoption industry counts on, you see. They fiqure if you don’t have the money to afford your baby, then you are not going to have the money for legal representation either. It is rather amazing though what can change in just a few years, and most moms who do place are not deadbeats and losers anyway, but motivated and goal oriented and want a better future. I am glad that Mary M.O. did not believe that she was worthless or that she had nothing to offer her child but saw that her child would be harmed by not knowing her.

I am really glad that the judge involved saw that too. Ruled in the best interest of the child, the court found that “the child was aware that the petitioner was her biological mother and that a cessation of visitation could result in long term feelings of distress and abandonment. On the other hand, the Court found that continued visitation would convey a positive message to the child that the biological mother really cared.”

Let the agencies and wanna be adoptive parents beware. Don’t talk the talk if you aren’t prepared to walk the walk. You cannot shut a mother out if you promised her visitation. If that is a condition of her surrender than it is a condition of the adoption too. You might end up in court. You might also become the intense discussion on an internet adoption fourm. You even might be seen as unethical and chastised by your peers. And, horror of all horrors, you might have to deal with the woman you tried to cut out of your life for no good reason and you might have to explain to your adopted child why.

Learn to keep your promises!

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