Sunday, January 24, 2010
Adopting your Parenthood
Miss Universe and film actress Sushmita Sen, is a single mother who adopted a second child in a row. As she puts it, - "this little girl needed a mom and I needed a child." It can be as simple and beautiful as that. Not just celebrities, but also common people, who wish to remain single, adopt children, in order to experience the joys of parenthood.
In India adoption has been prevailing since ages. Even the great epics like Ramayana and Mahabharata depicted adoption. It is great characteristic of Hindu culture that though out the Hindu period, right from the Vedic age to this date, the Hindus have always desired to have natural born son for the spiritual benefit and the continuation of lineage, yet right from the Vedic age, the existence of secondary sons in one form or the other has been recognised. References of Khetraja (Soil born son), Kanina (Mainden son), Dattaka (Adopted son) can be found in the Vedic literature. Most of these concepts of secondary sons in the course of time became obsolete and during the British period only natural sons and adopted sons existed. Still in India adoption for ages has been a tough time to deal with. The idea was to retain the property in the family sphere. Religious view was also a reason. The need for a male to perform the obsequies was critically needed. Although the main reasoning factor was the continuation of family line, yet many other religious motives were present in this regard. Adoption once became almost mandatory; otherwise the householder could never escape the tentacles or hell called Punnama Naraka (portion of hell set apart for son less males).
Nevertheless its time to celebrate we are in the 63rd Independence year and Adoption and its meaning have changed a lot in the minds of our society and in the hands of our laws. Though adopting a child is still a tough procedure to go with, becoming Parents Biologically or by adoption are two different yet unique experiences. The process of adoption might take one through a gamut of emotions ranging from intense hurt and grief to inexpressible joy.
Parenthood is parenthood no matter how it comes into being either biologically or through adoption. It often goes hand in hand with being married. Infertility is most often seen only as a medical problem, but such a viewpoint overlooks the emotional and psychosocial aspects, which are probably more important to the couple. Most couples simply assume that conceiving, childbearing and giving birth are matters of choice and an inevitable outcome of a marriage. Hence, an inability to conceive or to take a pregnancy to full term is an unexpected and traumatic shock. When you cannot have biological children, and when you think you might miss out on the experience of parenting, you may experience a void in your life. Infertility shows that in 40% of the cases the man is the cause, in another 40% it is the woman, and the couple share the problem in the remaining 20%. Still ignorance leads society to most often hold the woman responsible for childlessness.
Though Thankfully adoption did change its outlook in the modern society, its not just married couples adopting kids because of infertility its infact a huge number of Single parents both men and women willing to adopt kids and give them a happier life. More and More mature and successful men and women who do not feel the need of a partner are happier to have just a child in their life it fills the vacant space in their lives and adds meaning to it.
*Rohit a single father says " A word to the wise and I cannot stress this point enough. There are indeed a lot of parents waiting to adopt and the theory says that there is a ‘pecking order’. The reality is that good orphanages want to see their children settled with good families and they will match suitable families with suitable children based on their experience rather than simply waiting lists alone. Adoption in any country requires lots of patience, lots of perseverance, lots of time and some expense. So India is no different. "
Despite the difficulty and the long processes involved in it, the joy of being called a "Mumma" and "Dadda" from an angel's lips there's nothing like it. A successful adoption needs open communication, acceptance and a supportive environment in which one can discuss adopting a child as a viable alternative means of achieving parenthood. Another Father Rajashree delightfully says " Ist December'1990 was the most precious and important day for us. Our daughter Madhura entered our home. We were excited and delighted with her sweet smile and brown, round big mischievous eyes. She made our house a real home. But on all above this is she who has made us "parents" a "mother" and a "father". "
Somehow the meaning of adoption loses its value when people tend to express their choices not with love but with profitability. A person who is willing to adopt should not be driven by narrow considerations like sex and color of the child. Some couples only want boys, while some want fair girls. However, such choices defeat the purpose of bringing home and accepting a stranger. However every child needs love and understanding merely segregating the feelings of a child because of his/her incapability of fulfilling your needs defeats the feelings of parenthood.
Dr. Anjali.M a child specialist says " Adoptive parents should always keep in mind that children in adoption centers may not be the bouncing, bonny babies. They may have born underweight as a result of poor pre-natal care, malnutrition & undernourishment of the biological mother. With proper care & love, the child should soon blossom into good health. "
Most important of it all is that in any country or in any culture the will to adopt and nurture a homeless child has survived over mindless rituals. Adoptive parents should keep in mind that despite the struggle and hardships involved in the process of adoption the end result is a bundle full of joy in your arms. Just like a child is born and is meant to grow so are the parents who are born with the feelings of parenthood it only grows many folds with your child and his love. Parenthood is high above any boundaries.
( *Names changed to protect identity )
Courtesy - Comments and quotations internet/ opinions personal