Over last few days I have seen many stories popping up on my news feed about the father who refused to give up his son because he had Downs syndrome.
I have also read the story about how his wife has now filed for divorce and most recently I have read her side on the events that have unfolded.
Being a parent of a child with Down’s syndrome I feel for both these parents to be given this life changing news about their son. I remember and know how lost, scared and alone I felt when the doctors told us our daughter diagnosis.
I can only describe it as being as if the whole room just freezing in one moment, while everything else carries on around you, like all the air and sense had been sucked out of the room and your left wondering the big question of WHY?
I can only imagine how much harder it is to be in a country like Armenia that hasn’t yet begun to accept or help families that have children with disabilities.
I agree with everybody that is giving Samuel Forrest support and commendation because I do believe he deserves a round of applauses and I take my hat off to him. What he is doing is amazing and I think it is great that he want to take his son back to his home country New Zealand and give him the best possible start in life. Don’t we all want that for our kids!
But I don’t agree with the way everybody in vilifying the mother Ruzan Badalyan. It’s not right or fair. This woman is still probably coming to terms with everything. I don’t think she is horrid or sick because she felt ashamed of her child, because in all honesty I was ashamed when my daughter was first born. I was worried about what people would think and I was scared that people would blame me, like it was all my fault and I had some how caused my child to have Down’s syndrome.
Even though I knew this wasn’t the case and that it was a genetic abnormality that has happened well before conception and actually happened when my husbands sperm or my egg cells were dividing and becoming sperms and eggs.
The day my daughter was born was one of the scariest and happiest days of my life. I am not ashamed that for a brief second the thought of giving her up had crossed my mind. I was a 26 year old mother with 3 other kids. How was I going to cope? Would I be able to give her everything she needed to look after her?
Luckily that second pasted quick and those thoughts pasted with it. Unfortunately with time and thoughts new ones come along and the seconds tick by.
See when you are in that situation and your head is whirling with hundreds of questions or thoughts you never know which to pick and which to say. I remember fearing that my husband would judge me, hate me, blame me or worst leave me because I had given him this child that wasn’t the child we had spent the last 9 months dreaming, talking about and planning for. In one moment that was all gone and was replace with dread, uncertainty and FEAR!
That’s why as a mother of a child with Down’s syndrome I can’t hate this woman because I can empathise with what she is and has been going through.
I do believe what she did was the right thing to do for her and child. He will hopefully grow up in a loving home with his father and maybe his mother. You never know what the future holds. in a country where his family can find medical help and support that he needs. Instead of his mother and family struggling on in a country that doesn’t help family’s of children with disabilities and her not being able to give him the care he needs to flourish and grow.
For this woman I don’t feel hatred or anger or even disappointment. All I feel for her is sadden because she won’t be able to see or feel the happiness and sense of amazement you get we her little boy smiles at her, holds his head high or gives her cuddles and kisses. She won’t feel the sense of pride that her little boy has taken in and archived something that other would be easy but for him is difficult. But most of all I feel sorry for her because she will never know how it feels to truly love and accept someone for who they are.
I know this because since having my daughter she has opened up my world to true beauty and shows me how truly amazing she is.