Celebrities are becoming the poster children for adoption and infertility treatments. Both methods are aimed at one thing – becoming a parent. As many women age and are childless, they are faced with some serious decision making. If they are not able to produce on their own then what’s the next step? Can they stomach the idea of being a parent to another woman’s child?
In the case of a reality tv couple who chronicled their lives of trying to get pregnant naturally then starting fertility treatments, then the woman was diagnosed with cancer and treated, and ultimately giving up that aspect of the pregnancy fight and moving to surrogacy. Does it all seem a bit too much? I recognize that many people want to have a biological offspring as genetic posterity but what is so wrong with learning to love a child that is not genetically connected to you? The burden of getting pregnant is put on the woman and therefore she will put her body and mind through quite a bit in order to say I was pregnant and produced – is this a part of the female claiming her womanly identity? Is there a difference between loving your genetic offspring versus a child from someone else?
For the women who are not able to produce their own for whatever reason, their decisions to become mothers or mother figures are available. There is the surrogacy route with someone else’s genetic material, there is fostering children, there is adoption, and there is stepmothering. For the women who have chosen the non-genetic route, I applaud them for being able to look beyond the biological and find it in their hearts to learn to love someone else’s child. It is definitely not an easy task for some women, especially the ones who have dreamt about being pregnant and giving birth to their own.
This world has room for all sorts of good mothers who are willing to take the challenge. It could just be my bias regarding the situation but when it comes down to the gist of things, being a mother has nothing to do with biology. It has everything to do with a women’s capability to love. Because someone is genetically attached does not mean an automatic feeling of unconditional love and care towards the child that your birthed. Too many egg donors are doing irreversible damage to their ‘own.’ Women who make statements that they could not love anyone else’s child are the sort of women who should never have the opportunity of motherhood. Their love is only conditional. Back in the day when a village did raise a child, it was the responsibility of all the adults to become surrogate parents to the young ones. Instead, in this day and age, there is a systematic ‘us’ and ‘them’ when it comes to looking out for the innocent.
Mother’s day is coming up and many of us have been fortunate to have been raised by wonderful mothers-biological or adopted. The point is mother’s day celebrates all “good” mothers no matter what route they took to get to that point.