Friday, January 14, 2011

There's still a long way to go...but will we get the chance to go there?

Becca, over at The Bates Motel, posted about this article:

A New Down Syndrome Test Could Cut Healthy Baby Deaths

Just reading the headline makes me feel sick.  Where's the test that's going to cut the deaths of children with Down syndrome?  Because right now, there is AT LEAST a 93% abortion rate for babies that are prenatally diagnosed with Down syndrome.  I've even seen some articles claim that the rate is really 98%.  THAT, my friends, is a statistic that needs to be changed.

Buried in page 3 of the article, is this gem of a quote:
"We are saving babies," said Chui. "And just because we know the results doesn't mean women have to terminate. We are saving women from losing normal children just because of a procedure."
Gee thanks, Chui.  So after 2 1/2 pages of talking about how all the "normal" children will be finally mention that just because you will now know that your child has Down syndrome, you don't have to terminate.  But obviously you don't really believe that because in THE VERY NEXT SENTENCE you again mention that really, this test is just to "save" "normal" children.  The implication being that if, by chance, a procedure caused someone to lose a child that did have Down syndrome, so be it.  Ugh.
I realize that not everyone views this topic the same way that I do.  And I'm not trying to start a debate on abortion.  I'm just fed up with the way that the media, with the help of lots of people in the medical field, portray having a child with Down syndrome.  Are any of those people parents to a child with Down syndrome?  Who are they to portray abortion of a child with Down syndrome as the best option??  I can tell you now, that I have NEVER once regretted my decision to continue my pregnancy with Miss B.  Not then, not now, not ever. 

She is beautiful and perfect and radiates joy and light. 

Do we have hard days?  YES.  Having a child with special needs is not always easy--it is a different journey than the one with only typical children.  But IT IS A WONDERFUL JOURNEY.  It is a path on which I am grateful to be walking.  I NEEDED her to help me see how much I was missing out on before.  My eyes have been opened to the beauty of the world in a way that I would have never experienced without my little Miss Banana. 

Why does our society not value my daughter as much as the "typical" kids?  At times, I feel like we are making headway in our culture and that my child will be accepted and loved and valued...but then articles like this come up and I realize just how much further we have to go.

If more children with Down syndrome are prenatally diagnosed and then aborted...will society ever get the chance to see their true worth? 

If we practice this type of genetic genocide, will our society forever miss out on the rare magic that comes with an extra 21st chromosome?


Becca said...

Thank you for putting words to my rambling post this morning! I think about the child I dreamed of having, and know that I got *exactly* the one I wanted. I wouldn't change Samantha for anything. I hope there can be follow-up pieces to some of these news stories that show how people with Ds can live "normal," happy, productive lives.

Megan said...

Ugh is right. Carrie, you constantly amaze me with your power of words and ability to help us all open our eyes to what is around us. The 93% (or 98%!!) stat is shocking to me! So sad that those precious, precious lives were not given the opportunity to bless others with the lives God intended for them.

stephanie said...

I couldn't agree more, my heart sank when i read that article.

Technology and medical advances ares wonderful when used to save lives, but when the bulk of the celebration comes because now it's easier to save the "Normal baby", it just becomes sad. No more surprise Ds babies!! Sorry I'm not celebrating..

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