Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Steve Jobs and Adoption Myths

After Steve Jobs' death, there was lots of chatter about that fact that he was placed for adoption.  Not surprisingly, many tried to spin some lesson about adoption out of his life story.  This author goes for a two-fer, lessons about adoption AND abortion, arguing how wonderful adoption is and how wonderful that his biological mother chose adoption over the only other alternative, abortion.  And she does so why decrying "adoption myths."  Unfortunately, she puts forward quite a big adoption myth of her own -- this notion that there's an unalterable link between adoption and abortion.

The myth goes that if only a woman would forego an abortion, she would place the child for adoption.  Completely false.  The most common alternative to abortion for single mothers is parenting the child -- that's why less than 3% of single mothers place their children for adoption. The reason most women have abortions is NOT that they are not able to parent, it's that they are unable, because of their own life circumstances, to be pregnant.

So this rank speculation that the only two alternatives Jobs' birth parents had were abortion and adoption is more myth-making.  Consider what happened AFTER Jobs was placed for adoption -- his birth parents MARRIED 10 months after placing him for adoption!  I'd say that the only thing that would have happened if they had decided not to place their first child for adoption was that they would have married sooner, and parented that child (if everyone else is entitled to speculate about their choices, so am I!).  And if the time wasn't the 50s, Jobs' birth mom would have parented him as a single mother, as do more than 97% of single mothers today.


nichole said...

Right on. I liked what Declassified Adoptee had to say:

harriet glynn said...

Nothing makes me more uncomfortable that linking abortion and adoption. But I have been wondering how to speak to my support of both options and have it make sense. Great statistic.