Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Compulsory Medical Forms/ Why We Object

This is just plain cutesy tag lines or clip art. When we say that every person should have the same rights under the law, are we including the mothers? We are not if there are invasive and disrespectful requirements of the mothers that are not also applied to the adopted person and the adopters.

For instance; Jane Doe is a mother whose great, great uncle, John Doe, died of syphillis. It is not something those in the family who know about it talks about. It has no bearing on the health and well-being of the adopted person. It is nobody's business, isn't it?

Or, for insance; Jane went through a rough patch in her marriage and had an ill-advised affair. That is part of her psycho-social history, but is it the business of the state, her adult, surrendered child and that child's adopters?

Or, for instance; No one in Jane's family or in the family of the man who fathered her child has ever had cancer, AS FAR AS THEY KNOW,  but her adult, surrendered child develops cervical cancer. Should Jane be held liable?

Bastardette, in her blog about New Jersey bill S799 was direct and to the point. This provision of the bill is "intrusive." It allows for the ultimate kind of disrespect for mothers while tying up the adult adoptee in trying to meet ridiculous requirements in order to know their origins.

The ultimate lie is that this kind of muddying of the legislation for open records is done to "protect the mothers' privacy." Now, tell me how a compulsory medical form requirement from mothers does anything to protect her privacy and to protct her from frivilous lawsuits and liability? This only makes sense if the drafters of this rider to the bill hears strange voices in his/her head. This legislation is another in a long line of state bills that screw the mothers and throw a bone to the adopted citizens. It seems that "equality" is all for the industry and adopters.

There are things in my life that are my business, only..that I would not even share with the children I raised. Why should I be forced to answer these often insulting questions to have them shared with the state and adopters? Oh wouldn't it be boon to adopters, especially, if Jane had, at some point, been exposed to Herpese or gtenital warts. "See," they would say, gleefully, "We told you they were all sluts!" They, of course, won't mention the bout with clamydia that caused their infertility.

To those who draft these bill and then add all these provisions, Make. Up. Your. Minds! Either you are "protecting the mothers' privacy" or you are invading it. You can't have it both ways and you are losing your grip by pitting the adoptees against the mothers. We are noticing and some of us are getting together and talking. Just go ahead and say bye-bye to the adoption industry dollars in your campaign trunks and start getting real.

We mothers from the EMS aren't getting any younger, but over the years, we have become a lot smarter. Think about it.


Lori said...

BRAVO! My daughter said it best when she thanked me for not telling her about my sex life! LOL!

Seriously, BRAVO!

maryanne said...

Those deformer laws asking that the mother fill out a medical history form are stupid. They can't really be enforced. Why would a mother who did not want to meet her kid even bother to fill out the form?

Also, yes, they are intrusive. I don't often agree with y'all but I am with you on this one. Medical history is important, but it is a personal thing to be shared between mother and adult child, without the state as intermediary.How many people would see those forms as they were processed through state channels? That is a scary thought.

My surrendered son and I keep each other informed of medical stuff, it goes both ways and is helpful to me as well as him, and to my other kids too, like him training for a marathon bringing down blood pressure that was high, something I suffer from as well and control with medication.

I am so sad to live in NJ where this lousy bill is being proposed, after years of honorably fighting for a clean bill. The good news is that this one has no better chance of ever passing, and our new Governor is opposed to adoption reform so he would not sign it if it did pass.

Mandy Lifeboats said... going to tell my story again. I surrendered in Illinois and my daughter still lived in Illinois at the time I did this and we were already reunited. When I was searching for her I registered with the Illinois State Registry, in the hopes that maybe she would have done same (she hadn't). I found her on my own some months later after the registration. A few years into reunion and after Illinois passed the law that with the permission of the 'birth mother', as a registratant with the State Registry, the adoptee would then be able to have a copy of her OBC. My daughter at the time was interested in having her OBC. Now as I said when I done this, she and I were already reunited and I had said this to the state registry office in a phone I already knew my daughter's adopted name and the names of her adopted parents and I had already passed on my medical info to my daughter..person to person. Still for her to have her OBC, I had to fill out the medical questionaire. Being totally ignorant of what I was doing...thinking only 'in the best interest' of my now adult child..I did not think of the possible ramfications of my actions for the future and other family members as well. I filled out the medical questionaire and mailed it back. My daughter then decided she was no longer interested in requesting her OBC. So now! all my medical info is in the hands of the state, and I have no earthly idea who or how many people have pored over that questionaire AND that medical info was NEVER sent onto my adult child!
Here is a link to the medical questionaire I filled out.

Learning and now knowing what I know..I will never back an Open Records bill that includes the State Mandate demanding a nmother fill out a medical questionaire, that supposedly allows an adult adoptee access to their OBC. What if an adult adoptee changes their mind AFTER the fact, as my daughter did? All of my medical history and that of my family is now sitting in a state office somewhere and still was not forwarded on to the adult adoptee. These bills that are including state mandated medical not for the benefit for the adult is very much a 'benefit' for the state government's intrusiveness yet again into private matters of the individual and that individual's family. Now what will the State of Illinois decide to do with these questionaires...collect dust? I highly doubt that!

maybe said...

I looked at the form Mandy linked to. It contains the following:
"DISCLAIMER: The Illinois Department of Public Health cannot guarantee the accuracy of medical information exchanged through the Adoption Registry as the information is submitted by the registrants, not the Department."

Smart of them to alleviate themsevles of any liability. Mothers should do the same. After all, we're not doctors, so the info we supply could be inaccurate.

Anonymous said...

Kitta here:

This medical history issue has more than one origin.

Adoptive parents have been suing agencies for 'wrongful adoption' when the children they adopt have been less than perfect...sometimes because the child and the adoptive parents don't get along.

Madelyn Freundlich, an attorney who used to be director of the Donaldson Institute, wrote a book about adoptive parents who sue agencies, called "Wrongful Adoption." I met Madelyn at the Donaldson Conference in Anaheim.

Time magazine also did an article about the issue, some years back. And "60 Minutes" featured the Louise Wise case where the young man born to a schizoprenic mother developed the disease. The adoptive parents sued because they said they had asked for the background of the mother, and the agency lied.

Adoption agencies want to pass the medical/genetic liability they face from adoptive parents and potential adopters, onto natural parents.

The problems are many...liability, violation of privacy, lawsuits against natural parents, violation of privacy of other relatives, possible slander, accusations of fraud, damages from any of the repercussions. We have medical privacy for serious reasons. That is why it is so dear.

children are not a product.They cannot be guaranteed... we cannot guarantee ourselves, either.

We should not be forced to violate ourselves.

Thinking Mama said...

An awesome post, as always, Robin!

I may have told this story before, but when my mom and I reunited, she called the Virginia Bureau of Vital Statistics to try and get my original birth certificate, which she had signed. They told her, "it's as if you never had a child." A really nice sensitive thing to tell a mom who's lost a child to adoption, isn't it?