- Tonight, I watched a programme, that made me cry. And I have been called stone faced....I don't cry easily. Anyway, the programme was presented by actor Sally Philips (Smack the Pony, Miranda) and she was exploring the way in which screening tests are presented to expectant Mums, and the language used. And even calling them 'screening' tests hints at the leading language used. It's also devisive......your baby is perfect. Or it's not. According to whom? And that's just the beginning of a lifetime of division......
Sally Philips has a ten year old son with Downs Syndrome, and as more and more people abort babies with Downs, what message will he get from that? Not a good one.
In Iceland, the termination rate is 100% for known Downs babies. The programme featured a clip of Sally talking to a young lady, with Downs. She could speak English, as well as Icelandic. But how do you go about living in a country, where people have deemed themselves unfit to raise a child with Downs, or have decided that they don't want a child with Downs. I'm not suggesting that it's a decision that's made easily. Far from it. It also featured Karen Gaffney, who has Downs, giving a TED Talk. She was incredible and I plan to watch it all later. Now, I would shit a brick giving a TED talk, but not this young lady. She was so calm, and looked so comfortable. Her talk was called All Lives Matter. And I've pinched that for this blog. Thank you Karen.
This got me thinking.....in the future, will other diseases or syndromes be identified? Or a risk assessment made about diseases/syndromes occurring? Like cancer or Multiple Sclerosis for example. Now, I wouldn't wish MS on anyone, but would I abort a baby that had that in their future? No. I'd had four of my children pre diagnosis. One or all of them may develop MS. And I had number five, after my diagnosis. I was 39, so my risk factor had increased for a child less than perfect. But I am less than perfect too, so I decided that I'd take and love, whatever came my way.
*I don't know how I made that first paragraph move in a bit, with the black dot. And I don't know how to undo it either. So, sorry about that. I'll try and get a lesson later.