Friday, April 29, 2011

00K8: License to Breed


As is my impatient nature, I have already looked into all possible fertility options post-cancer.  Egg freezing, surrogacy, and adoption are all on the table if cancer treatment affects my fertility.  I have always considered the possibility of adoption after I'm in remission, as I know there are so many babies out there who need homes.  One would think a young, intelligent married couple such as Ben and myself would be great candidates for adoption.   
THINK AGAIN, CANCER-FACE! ... (is what the imaginary adoption agency would say to me)
In my research, I have found that even women who have been declared cancer-free for years are being shut out of the adoption process.  In fact, anyone who would like to adopt must be free of any life-threatening illness, have no history of cancer, have no diagnosed mental illness and be married.  Yikes.  I guess I have at least one of those.  
Let me address these one by one...
First of all, I must ask what they consider a life-threatening illness.  I mean, the flu can be life-threatening and I had that last week.  Can people who get the flu adopt?  
And what mental illnesses are we talking about?  Schizophrenia or just garden-variety depression?  Because if it's anything, then that cuts out about 75% of women--many of whom were probably diagnosed with depression because they couldn't have children. 
In that same vein, 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point, so that eliminates like 12% of the population.  Don't get me wrong--I totally get why women who are still in treatment or have only a few years to live would have trouble adopting.  But 5, 10 years down the line cancer-free and a married woman still can't adopt?
Let's talk for a moment about the requirement of being married, too (mostly the case for international adoptions, like in China or Russia).  If a woman is single and makes like $100,000 a year on her own, why shouldn't she be able to support a child?  While I totally believe that 2 parents are usually better than 1...isn't one great parent better than two bad ones?
That brings me to my main point: if this Social Darwinism can exist in public adoption, why the hell are some people out there even allowed to have children?  Is just having a decent immune system and a good set of ovaries all a person needs to deserve a child?  Shouldn't we have to pass a psych test or something?   
When I have full clearance from a physician and a reasonable assurance of longevity, am I really still not as capable of being a parent as Octomom or that couple that put their son in the weather balloon?!  I call triple shenanigans!  
No, octuple shenanigans!



  1. More crazy rules...

    Ironically, since 40% of children are being raised in single parent households now, the people working in adoption agencies making these decisions are probably single parent themselves and many with the very illnesses you describe.

    Why world (run mostly by men who make family planning rules and laws) don't you make sense?

  2. Welcome to the madhouse. :(