7 February 2015

Shame on Dad?

Well, the articles have gone viral, everybody throws in their opinions and the attacks on the mom are wicked and cruel.
I always jump on board when it comes to ignorance surrounding Down syndrome. I automatically assume that what the media is telling me, is accurate and truthful. I have learnt from past experience that the media twists and turns the stories to make them more attractive to readers and viewers.
After reading numerous articles, I decided to sit back and think about both sides, what was going on in mom's head and how dad was feeling at the time that he was told that he would be raising his son on his own.
Today, mom hits back at father's claims and denies the allegations.

The world has attacked this mom on social media sites all around the world, meanwhile, we have only read and watched dad's side of the story. I have to admit, mom really didn't make herself sound that much better in her article, but at least she came forward to share her version.

This is how I see it.....

We have all given dad this big pat on the back for keeping his son. Wow, a father who wants to keep his newborn son, who has been diagnosed with Down syndrome. He is a saint. What a stand up kind of guy. He deserves a medal for wanting to actually raise this boy who will be a lot more work than a 'typical' child. Why are we doing this? Why are we giving him so much praise and support when he is doing what he should be doing. Nobody ever said to James that he was an amazing father for staying with me after we gave birth to Adele. Nobody patted him on the back or whispered in his ear that they were floored that he stayed and that he didn't go running.
He is Adele's daddy and Brinley's daddy. He has a job to do, which is to take care of his wife and children. We all take care of each other.

The other thing, I was taken aback that a Go Fund Me page was set up so quickly. Where was my fundraising page? Nobody stepped up and said "it's going to be work Krista, here is some money." In 11 days, he has raised almost half a million dollars. Now, Samuel promises to give back to orphanages and to help those with disabilities, so that they have a more promising future. This is not how the world works. What is happening? Mom gives birth to baby with Down syndrome. Mom runs. Dad sets up Go Fund Me page. Dad makes a whack of money.

Little Leo has Down syndrome. Why is the world treating him like he has a life threatening disease? The world sees Down syndrome as something so horrible, so much more work, that the only way that dad will make it through this, is if we all donate money and bash mom.
If Samuel has plans on moving back to Auckland, he needs to contact his local Down syndrome chapter, find out about services and resources in the community. He is Leo's dad. This is what a parent does, they take care of their child, they love their child and they do whatever is possible to ensure the health and safety of the child.

The mother.....

After reading numerous articles, I have come up with one conclusion, mom is uneducated when it comes to Down syndrome. The doctors provided her with such a grim picture. They felt sorry for her and gave her the option to run. They didn't walk into her room and congratulate her, they didn't give her a hug and tell her that it would all be ok and that they would provide her with the necessary supports. They made Down syndrome sound like it was a curse, it will ruin her life and that the future would be dismal and full of upset.
What would I have done? I don't know to be honest. Those first words are the most important words that a mother will hear. Those first words that come out of the doctor's mouth, sets the tone for how a family will proceed; with confidence or with fear and worry.
Why is this happening in our world today? There have been huge advancements in medicine and technology, why can we not fix this? Why are doctors not educated on how to deliver the news that a new baby has Down syndrome? Why is there still so much shame and ignorance surrounding Down syndrome? There needs to be a shift and it needs to happen right away. I feel sorry for Ruzan Badalyan. She was robbed of the excitement and joy of having a brand new baby. How wrong. I blame the doctors and the nurses. I blame them for not doing their jobs properly. They should be ashamed. I also put blame on the mother for not seeking support, for not wanting to be educated.

None of us know the real story. None of us know if the marriage was falling apart long before the arrival of this beautiful miracle. Instead of criticizing and spitting venom at this mom, let's spread awareness and continue to educate the world. Let's change how the news is delivered. Let's jump on board together and show others that this journey is beautiful. This journey is rewarding and full of blessings and joy.

A sweet little miracle named Leo was born.

The littlest feet make the biggest footprints in our hearts. (unknown)



  1. Ah, great post, I agree with everything you said here! Something about this story doesn't sit right with me. First of all, ya, that Go-Fund me page was set up awfully quick...As was the filing for divorce. It all seems...Off. And I suppose we will never really know the truth.

    My heart ached reading the story. Just knowing that in some parts of the world kids with Ds are instantly shuffled off to institutions...That they are never really given a chance. That people are afraid to love them...It's sad.

    Because we don't know the truth of this story, I cannot judge the Mom. I remember how heartbroken and scared I was when Russell was born. I just feel sad for her. I feel sad for her boy.

    Great post Krista.

    1. Thanks Jenny! I'm pretty sure that more will come out, the media will dig deep, as they always do. I feel sad for her too. She doesn't know, she doesn't get it. All we can do, is try to keep changing the world. You're doing a great job in this area. :) xo

  2. You said everything I said to others who were posting this story on their FB wall as an "oh wow, what a great dad". I said this man didn't find this child on his doorstep, he's the father so i would expect nothing less. Also, I was very bothered by the go fund me as well

    1. Thank you!! Well said! I like your doorstep comment. I also checked out his Twitter feed and he sent tweets to many Ds organizations, not asking for support or resources but he attached his Go Fund Me link.

  3. Hey, just read your post. I like it.
    You may ask yourself: „Where was my fundraising page? Nobody stepped up and said "it's going to be work Krista, here is some money." I think this question is allowed for all mothers, especially those who raise kids with down syndrome alone, means: without the dad.
    I know at least 10 of them of a small community here in Germany. They have earned my respect. What they do is awesome.
    For me, it is easy. I have a very nice, intelligent and chraming woman, and a daughter with down syndrome, she is healthy, and I have good job.
    For many others, it is not. They should receive a starting pack. Definitely. But they don't.
    On the other hand: I really like it, when people hear about a hartbreaking story, and are willing to support. They do it, because they want to help, and because they are able to do so. This is human, and this is beautiful. Those supporters are not under pressure, they are not forced, they have no personal advantage when spending some bucks.
    And: yes, there are more mothers, fathers and kids who should be supported. There are many situations which are worse. Wars. Death of hunger. Deadly diseases.
    We should help and support there, too. Everyone, who is able to do so.
    The supporters of Leos dad are right. They want to help. And that is, what is needed. Here, there, and everywhere.
    And, greysonandgavinsma, I see no problem when Leos Dad contacts DS organizations. Shouldn't he? Why?

    You wrote: „None of us know the real story. None of us know if the marriage was falling apart long before the arrival of this beautiful miracle. Instead of criticizing and spitting venom at this mom, let's spread awareness and continue to educate the world.“ –– Totaly agree. One difference: „Instead of criticizing and spitting venom at the parents, let's spread awareness and continue to educate the world.“ And that's what happens.

  4. Chris, I love your feedback and your comments. You are right about the supporters. It is up to them and nobody is pressuring them. I hope that he uses the money the way it was intended. Thank you again. I really enjoyed reading your thoughts. :)