Parenting abilities of disabled adults questioned

Many people look forward to raising children. While many groups of people who previously may have not been able to have children can now adopt or have children through other means, there is still bias against some people parenting children. A woman with muscular dystrophy explains that disabled adults are one group that is still discriminated against when it comes to parenting.

This woman has four adopted children-all of whom have a disability. As a lawyer, this woman has worked with parents who were told they could not parent their children because of disabilities including blindness and deafness. This woman explains that just because a parent has a disability, he or she is not going to be a bad parent.

The stories of parents whose ability to raise a child has been questioned are abundant. For instance, one couple who are both blind, had their 2-day-old daughter taken away from them for nearly two months. During this time they could only see their infant a couple hours each week. Their ability to parent was questioned by a nurse who observed the mother struggle when attempting to nurse her infant-something many new mothers struggle with.

Raising a child is not something that every person wants to do. But for those who do want to have children, it would be very frustrating to be told by a stranger that a disability makes them unfit parents. This type of conclusion is presumptuous and does not allow parents with disabilities to learn how to parent a child, something new parents without disabilities must also learn how to do.

Source: ABC News, “Disabled parents face bias, loss of kids: Report,” David Crary, Nov. 26, 2012

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