Motherhood – Nine Months vs. A Lifetime
“You’re about ten meters dilatedit’s time to push!” You grab hold onto your husband’s hand a little tighter. Take a deep breathand the labor process begins. This is a common everyday scenario that happens thousands of times a day in hospitals all over the world. Yet sometimes, women will never be able to go through this process, due to circumstances beyond their control. Imagine never being able to have a child. Imagine infertility. Month after month, dozens of negative pregnancy tests, hundreds of dollars, infinite heartaches. What is a couple to do? Who can they trust? What are their options?
One option that is becoming more and more popular in today’s society is surrogate motherhood. Why? Some believe it is because of the continuous decreasing numbers of adoptable infants, especially healthy Caucasian infants. The advantage of surrogacy is that the child is usually related to one of the intended parents and can be the product of both genetic parents.
Yet the reason that many Americans don’t look for this as an option first is because of the large percentage of unsuccessful cases. A majority of the negative feelings towards surrogacy is mainly due to the uncertainty of the outcome. There is not a 100% guarantee that everything will work out as planned. There are many controversial topics surrounding surrogate motherhood. One is whether or not the surrogate mother has the right to change her mind, that is, to keep the baby.
Take a look at adoption for a minute, although the two may be extremely different. In adoption the mother has usually become involuntarily pregnant, while in surrogacy, the pregnancy is voluntary. Yet whom would you consider the true mother of the child? The mother who gave birth yet, chose to give the child up, or the one who has raised him/her? To me, the answer is simple. The couple who adopted the child is the “true” mother and father, and in most cases, the adopted child would say the same.
On the other hand, who decides which woman gains the title of true mother? “Do we define a true mother the woman who gives physical birth or a child, or the woman who spends her life shaping this baby into and individual. This question is a hard one to answer because most of the stipulations have double standards. Yet when it comes down to it, to “investigating” the circumstances a little closer, it can be stated that no matter who gives birth to the child, the one who raises it and cares for it can be called its mother.
The word “Mother” can have a lot of different meanings to different people. For some, their grandmother may be considered their mother, or maybe their aunt or close family friend. Because someone came from within a woman, it does not constitute her, nor does it automatically give her the right to be called the mother of the child. Of course they are the biological parent. Yet “mother” holds a higher meaning. If a woman has a child and then abandons itwhat kind of woman is that? She’s certainly not a mother by any means.
Webster’s Dictionary defines “mother” as: a female parent; a woman in authority; an old or elderly woman. Yet, I define a mother as someone who is there for you always, someone who is up with you in the middle of the night when you don’t feel well, someone who is there to wipe the tears streaming down your face, and there to place the band-aid on your knee after you have fallen on the ground, someone who gives you advice, cares, nourishes, loves, protects, hugs, kisses, someone you can look up to and say, “that’s who I want to be when I grow up.” In other words, a role model, who if she could, would take away all your pain and unhappiness just so you wouldn’t have to suffer. A mother is someone who would lie down her life for you. There are so many descriptions of a mother that have nothing to do with biology. Yes, of course, you may look like your mother maybe even talk like your mother; but