Friday, April 29, 2005

"Our" Birthmother

"Our" birthmother. Hmm. "Our" birthmother.

This is an odd thing to say. Sort of like "our" Bessie (the house wench, of whom we are ever so fond - sarcastically speaking - as long as she serves us well).

I surfed the web on "our birthmother" and got 50,000 websites. Some of the websites had "the birthmother" in addition to "our birthmother". It's as if the mother of a child became so incredibly un-related to him that she is an object, sort of like being only the oven a pizza comes out of. Thus the mother is called a "birthmother" (aka birth object) and furthermore she is not viewed as connected in any way to her child. The consumer consumes the pizza, the baby, the product - and to heck with the baby production equipment.

"To our shock and dismay, our birthmother changed her mind."

"Will you continue to see the birthmother?"

"The birthmother became a real person with feelings and fears."

"...on April 1st, April Fools Day, we got the call about our birthmother."

On a book review: "One reviewer here talks about her adoptee's mother in terms of "our birthmother," a demaning title indeed that makes it seem as though the true mother is merely a breeder for the adopters." - Wow, I guess I'm not the only one who's disgusted.

"...despise our birthmother for changing her mind."

Of course, not all of the websites had "our" right in front of "birthmother". Instead, some emphasized the adopters' ownership of the baby, thus insulting the motherhood of the real mom:

"Dear Birthmother, Thank You For Our Baby" - that's pretty sick. Why not "Thank you for your baby?" I suppose such honest wording would make it too obvious that it is wrong to take a mother's child.

A little better (at least they are acknowledging the relatedness between mother and child in a minor way): "... Beth's birthmother .."

"We gave our birthmother this bracelet after she left the hospital." What - a TRINKET in exchange for her offspring?

" we wait for our birthmother to give birth,..." Do they OWN this woman even before she signs the papers?

"Our birthmother is due on April 16th, and I'm not producing any milk yet. I would love to look into donor milk as opposed to formula." Lady, maybe you can get "our birthmother" to milk herself and help you out. That way, her child will get the breast milk designed for him.

This one is precious in it's knowing depravity:
"Tonight we finished the final draft of our "Dear Birthmother" letter, wherein we attempt to convince the mother of our child-to-be to give us her baby."

Finally an adopted person speaks from the viewpoint of adoptees: "...we ourselves may be afraid of the Truth that we might find there, afraid of being turned away by our birthmother, or afraid that..."

It's an ironic tragedy, isn't it? A mother is told to "do the right thing" and "if you really love your child, you'll give him up" - and then her child is terrified she might not want him.

"Our" birthmother. Hmm. "Our" birthmother.....


At 1:59 PM, Blogger Leo said...

I'm adopted and don't have any 'issues' over it. I think it was a selfless thing for my 'BIRTHMOTHER' to do. She obviously wasn't in the right position to be able to care for me and giving me up was probably the greatest act of love she could have possibly given. I was raised in a great home and my parents were great.

At 4:31 PM, Blogger Concublogger said...

That whole "our birthmother" thing is hysterical. I cannot STAND reading about the "birthmother" changing her mind and the potential adoptive parents actually say "OUR BABY" "our baby" for months as if they have stocked the woman with the baby and are just waiting for it to come out.

Presumptuous people drive me crazy.

At 12:56 PM, Blogger said...

I hate the word birthmother. Fancy Leo talking about how selfless his natural mother was and then using the word birthmother in big letters. What does THAT mean?

At 7:51 PM, Blogger petunia said...

I have been reading all this debate on "birthmother". I'm sure over analyzing it you could think of all sorts of reasons it's not quite right. However, i think if you think about anything that much - you are bound to come up with all sorts of things about it. When i hear birthmother i think it's an endearing word. I'm adopted and it makes me feel good that my biomom chose to give birth to me. She took care of me in the womb, she wanted me to go to the very best place because she was not able to take care of me and she still thinks of me after all these years. BIRTH is a very sacred and special thing. I don't feel like it's a put down or a degrading thing at all - i use it with the utmost respect.
(I also use biomom - i said on another blog ---it sounds bionic or superhuman)

At 5:22 PM, Blogger Manuela said...

My biological/natural/first/birth mother and I both use the term birthmom... I use that word mostly because that's the term she prefers to use... but I am bothered by the baby factory connotations. Not just because it belittles her role... which it does... but also because it somehow implies that I'm just her product... rather than her child. The 'our' birthmother thing??? Makes me see steaming seething red... I find it incredibly offensive.

At 3:25 AM, Blogger Mad Blogger said...

As an adoptee and a BIRTHMOM, I have to say something. I love being both. My birthmom made a plan for my life and it turned out wonderfully. I made plans for my two boys and they are the happiest and healthiest boys around. I have no objections to the word "birthmom". That's what I am, a birthmom. My experience with adoption has been nothing but great. I am sorry that you don't agree. It is because of people like you that adoption has a "dirty" connotation.


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