The Safe Haven Law

November 21, 2008 at 2:04 pm Leave a comment

Interestingly, some states have a Safe Haven Law that protects unwanted infants.  For example, a young mother decides that she can’t raise the baby and after delivering, instead of leaving the infant in a bathroom or a dumpster (which used to be what you’d hear about), she can drop the infant off at a hospital with no repercussions to the mother thereby allowing the baby to be adopted.

Well, Nebraska got it a bit wrong. They enacted the Safe Haven Law in July.  That was the good thing. They didn’t put an age limit on the law (under 10 days old for example). That was the bad thing.  In recent months, not one infant has been dropped off under this law; only children and teens. Yes, children and teens.  Families have dropped off their kids to area hospitals because they can’t handle “it” or “them” anymore.

As someone who has been estranged from some members of my family for over 13 years, this was a crushing blow to continue to hear about these stories.  I know what it’s like to be abandoned but for me, it wasn’t quite as definitive as parents going to a hospital to drop their kids off and say “take them, I can’t deal with it anymore” while kids cry and wail “I will be good, please don’t leave me”.  It absolutely breaks my heart to hear these stories because I can surely empathize.  There is obviously a real issue at stake here when over 34 children are abandoned by frustrated parents.  But this law was not designed for those situations (maybe this will spur some other community action though).

Nebraska is doing it what it can to address both very serious issues, which I applaud.  But for those out there that wonder about the future of these children, as someone who can relate, blood is NOT always thicker than water and you can absolutely find love, support, friendship, success, and happiness in this world on your own terms.  I say this as living proof.

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Entry filed under: Relationships, thoughts. Tags: , , , .

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