Legal Adoption Practices or Violations of Single Mothers’ Legal Rights?

Legal Adoption Practices or Violations of Single Mothers’ Legal Rights?

Millions of single, mostly white, mothers in America have been labeled “unwed” mothers or “birth” mothers and used as if they were only some sort of equipment producing babies for the adoption market. Origins America provides support for these mothers, educates the public about adoption issues and – most importantly:

Origins America and the Baby Scoop Era Research Initiative are demanding an inquiry into the unethical and illegal practices which treated single mothers differently from married mothers. We thank those moms who responded to our questionnaire about their experiences. Results of the survey will be posted when they are compiled.

It’s one thing when a child has no one and someone takes her in.

It’s completely different when healthy babies – mostly white babies – are turned into “orphans” to supply the market for healthy babies for adoption.

This is not “legal” adoption – it is systematic infant abduction

Many of us received extremely inhumane treatment.

Many of us were not even told whether we had a son or a daughter.

But even those who were treated more humanely were never told the truth about

  • The effects of adoption separation on mothers and their babies
  • The help that was available.
  • We were judged to be “unfit” based on marital state alone, without even giving us the opportunity to prove ourselves

Now we’d like to set the record straight. Read the quotes and articles on this website.

When there are no options, there is no choice.

We did not choose this painful sentence – sentenced to life without getting to raise our own sons and daughters.

Quotes from social workers and adoption professionals:

“Because there are many more married couples wanting to adopt newborn white babies than there are babies, it may almost be said that they rather than out of wedlock babies are a social problem. (Sometimes social workers in adoption agencies have facetiously suggested setting up social provisions for more ‘babybreeding’.)” SOCIAL WORK AND SOCIAL PROBLEMS, National Association of Social Workers, (Out-of-print) copyright 1964

“… the tendency growing out of the demand for babies is to regard unmarried mothers as breeding machines…(by people intent) upon securing babies for quick adoptions.” – Leontine Young, “Is Money Our Trouble?” (paper presented at the National Conference of Social Workers, Cleveland, 1953)

“. . . unwed mothers may have placed their children for adoption for any of the following reasons . . . (2) they were advised or pressured to release the baby . . .” COUNSELING THE UNWED MOTHER, by Helen E. Terkelsen, copyright 1964

“A grief reaction unique to the relinquishing mother was identified. Although this reaction consists of features characteristic of the normal grief reaction, these features persist and often lead to chronic, unresolved grief. CONCLUSIONS: The relinquishing mother is at risk for long-term physical, psychologic, and social repercussions. Although interventions have been proposed, little is known about their effectiveness in preventing or alleviating these repercussions.” Journal of Obstetric, Gynecological and Neonatal Nursing, 1999 Jul-Aug; pp. 395-400

“If the demand for adoptable babies continues to exceed the supply then it is quite possible that, in the near future, unwed mothers will be “punished” by having their children taken from them right after birth. A policy like this would not be executed — nor labeled explicitly — as “punishment.” Rather, it would be implemented through such pressures and labels as “scientific findings,” “the best interests of the child,” “rehabilitation of the unwed mother,” and “the stability of the family and society.” Unmarried Mothers, by Clark Vincent, 1961)

 “The director of a Boston maternity home has quoted a girl who felt she was being pressured into surrendering her child “It’s not what Mrs. K says exactly, it’s just that her face lights up when I talk about adoption the way it doesn’t when I talk about keeping Beth.” Adopting a Child Today, Rael Jean Isaac with Joseph Spencer, Legal Consultant, copyright 1965
“Adoption was cloaked in secrecy. Adoptions were arranged by an agency or other intermediaries, such as doctors or lawyers, who chose the adoptive parents. A mother had no control over who would adopt her child. Sometimes she saw her child once or twice after delivery, sometimes not at all. She was rarely given the opportunity to hold her baby because it was believed that she would then find it too difficult to place him for adoption. Adoptive parents were assured that the final adoption records would be sealed by the courts and that they need not fear future intrusion from the mother. Open Adoption Part 1 of 2, National Adoption Information Clearinghouse