This was the Facebook rant of a friend of mine, Monday afternoon.
This is the baby, born to a teen against her will, that prompted the Facebook status. NewMom, abandoned by her parents, decided to keep the baby, and many people have promised to walk with her through this journey of motherhood. I showed up on the scene after the initial trauma, and well into the pregnancy. After the decisions were made, and commitments in action. I don’t know the details, I just know the present situation.
Unfortunately, the present situation is pretty complicated. At seventeen, without any experience with infants, the stress of the idea of this child and no parenting role models – NewMom has a lot to learn. They say mothering comes naturally, but I don’t know that that’s true. To me, caring for a child is natural. My first experience of being told to look out for my younger siblings came when I was four years old, and two more siblings were born after that. I was in a stable, two-parent home where I knew (even if I didn’t act like I knew) that no one was leaving, there would always be food on the table and my parents were going to to care for me. I have more friends with children than I can count, and I’ve lived with two different families with infants. With that background, that stability and that experience – of course caring for other children comes naturally.
This new mom has a lot to learn, a lot to overcome and not much time to do it – but a strong support group insisting it’s possible.
In the meantime, she’s staying with my friends and their two teenage daughters. A small posse of single women are spending the nights and some days at the house, working to fill in the gaps while the “mothering lessons” take place. Holding sweet, fussy and clingy baby girl Thursday, I had to realize – she doesn’t have a lot going for her by society’s standards. Born to a young, poor, single mother against her will, a rapist for a father and no family to advocate on her behalf. A mother that has no marketable skills is a sitting duck in Thai culture, and looked down on by the classist society.
When I tell my co-workers where I spent the evening, I expect to spend most of the conversation trying to explain how I even know this girl. Classes don’t mix, and I am expected to mingle with the Hi-So [High Society] crowd because I am white and educated. This is wrong and baby girl does have a future. She will be raised by her mother, with the support of at least 4 other single mothers, two couples and countless others who have seen her little soul struggle to survive and acknowledged her value. I am here now, maybe not for long, but I am here now and for today – she has one more woman who counts her as worthy.
I am participating in NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month), posting everyday for the month of November.
Below I will post links to other participating bloggers. If you’d like a link, please leave a comment. Thanks!
[All listed links + descriptions are at my discretion, they are not affiliate links, I am not being compensated in any way for the blogs I suggest]
1. Grumbles and Grunts : Somebody’s Crunchy Mother, and a former Hoosier
2. Expatria Baby: Another Expat! Living in Indonesia and blogging about her life, her family and dreams.
3. Sherbet and Sparkles: Another young, single Expat! Living in Germany, after being in Japan.