Mom in adoption battle for baby

2012-07-02 09:01

Durban - A KwaZulu-Natal woman has been left traumatised after she changed her mind about giving up her baby for adoption - only to have a social worker refuse to give her son back to her.

The Sunday Tribune reported that Aritha Govender contacted social workers after the birth of her child, saying she wanted to give him up for adoption.

It was Govender’s third child and both she and her husband were unemployed.

“I love my baby, but I wanted what was best for him. I wanted him to be placed in a loving, Christian home. That was the only way I would have peace. It wasn’t an easy decision to make,” she said.

But she changed her mind after two days, saying she no longer wanted to give him away.

The social worker, however, would not give back her baby, despite the law saying that a mother had 60 days to change her mind about adoption and even though she had signed no papers.

The mother refused to leave GJ Crookes Hospital in Scottburgh until her baby was given back to her.

A hospital spokesperson said the social worker was concerned that the couple couldn’t look after the child and that a third party may have forced them to change their minds.  

The baby was being fostered by family friends while his future was being discussed.

  • kabelo.leballo - 2012-07-02 09:10

    just give the baby back!

  • melania.nel - 2012-07-02 09:18

    Maybe the social worker needs to get out more. Has she been to any townships and squater camps recently? Those kids are left alone. These parents can apply for child grants for their children and they won't go hungry at least. Just give the child back.

  • Clementine - 2012-07-02 09:34

    There's many instances where we know things shouldn't happen regardless of what the law says. She may be completely wrong (SW), but I can actually see the other side of the coin as well, what has changed in 2 days since she made the decision to give him up? has either parent found a job? (which presumably was one of the major contributing reasons she gave him up).

      marleze.baartman - 2012-07-02 09:49

      But it is still her child that she gave birth to and her right to change her mind, and the Social Worker broke the law, regardless.

      marion.friedenthal - 2012-07-02 10:04

      I think what happened during the two days was that the mother realized that she couldn't do it. I think any mother would understand that thinking you can do what you consider to be best for your baby and actually being able to separate yourself from the baby you have carried in your womb for 40 weeks are two totally different things. If a child lives in a squatter camp it is not considered to be sufficient criteria to remove the child from the parents so why should the SW now be using concern about the parents ability to care for the child as an excuse to keep it? Abuse is the reason kids are taken away from their parents, not unemployment.

      sanet.oelofse - 2012-07-02 10:45

      Well said Marion!

  • daCouncillor - 2012-07-02 09:45

    Lets not judge people, children are gifts from God. . . but is tough in this current economic time. . . but maybe the mother was hoping that her employment status would change. . . As for the social worker, charges of extortion must be brought against her. . .

  • colline.maule - 2012-07-02 10:02

    why breed when you don't have a job!!!!! THE PILL IS FREE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      marion.friedenthal - 2012-07-02 11:11

      @colline - did I miss something in the article that said that she became pregnant after becoming unemployed? Insofar as the pill goes, it can fail for numerous reasons. A couple of reasons it will fail is if one takes certain antibiotics or St John's Wort whilst on it.

  • keikantseng.ruth - 2012-07-02 10:09

    As a birh Mother, she has every right to change her mind.

  • lesley.tucker.7 - 2012-07-02 10:12

    It's concerning that nurses and social workers feel it their right to make life changing decisions on behalf of others. Many woman seeking termination of pregnancy are abused by hospital staff and teenagers seeking contraception are turned away or lambasted for being sexually active. Now it's permissible to withhold a child from a willing parent. Just give the child back and uphold the law. Women have the right to change their minds and make decisions for themselves. Who died and made this social worker god?

  • faizieishlah.shabalala - 2012-07-02 10:24

    Should have changed her mind about breeding in the first place.

  • Karel du Toit - 2012-07-02 10:39

    why are the social workers allowed human trafficking? who are they to decide the fate of another human?

  • candice.ridgway - 2012-07-02 11:30

    thats bad, I didnt even no my boy existed until day 61. The mother has a right to think about it for 2 months which is fair i think. This social workers heart was probably in the right place, but i hope she got reprimanded for her actions.

  • Ryno - 2012-07-02 12:50

    social worker most prob wanted to sell it off on the black market...anything for a quick buck

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