Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Prenatal Child Abuse

by Gaetane Borders

As a child advocate, I normally write and talk about child abuse that happens postnatally. However, today’s blog post is a bit different because it will focus on prenatal abuse. The idea came to me after running across two different recent research studies about pregnancy and the affects of drug and alcohol use during gestation.

We all know that pregnancy can be really stressful with all the changes your body goes through, and with the constant worrying that the baby will be healthy. So why not take some of the edge off with a few glasses of wine. Heck…it could help dull the back pain you get in the latter months. Sounds crazy you say! Not according to a group of researchers.

In a recent study, they found that "Light drinking is fine, but heavy and binge drinking should be avoided." (Note to self….avoid binge drinking when pregnant. Oh yeah...and any other time!!!) Reports indicate that “pregnant women who drank one or two units of alcohol a week didn't harm their children. The scientific proof is that by age 5, children who were part of the study were still doing well -- able to walk straight lines and touch their noses with the tips of their fingers.” I can’t make this stuff up if I tried (sigh). Listen up people (said in my best School Psychologist voice), I encourage you to set the bar higher for your children. Sure, the kids in the research study were able to touch their noses and walk a straight line…but could they read and comprehend….recite the alphabet…..hmmmmm or ……speak coherently? I’m just saying...

Another research study about the post-natal effects of Methamphetamine (a.k.a Crystal Meth) has been discussed recently. Crystal Meth is a stimulant drug that wreaks havoc on the nervous system, causing brain changes that could cause anxiety, mood problems, and violent behavior. Researchers found that pregnant moms who use meth can also pass some of these behavioral problems onto their kids. Here’s my question….Did anyone ever doubt that there would be repercussions from using meth whether pregnant or not?

I consider the use of drugs and alcohol during pregnancy to be a form of child abuse because it harms children physically and intellectually. In fact, it can limit their potential even before they enter the world. Low birth weight, premature delivery, birth defects, learning difficulties, and infant withdrawal symptoms are just some of the problems that can happen.

So ladies, please put down the wine glass. The nine months will fly by before you know it. Though you may crave a nice glass of Châteauneuf du Pape, resist that temptation until after the baby is born. Moreover, any illicit drug use is undoubtedly going to affect your unborn child. Trust me…I work everyday with kids whose moms did not heed this counsel, and for those kids being able to touch their noses would, indeed, be a milestone. You might hear contradictory arguments about this issue. Some will swear that a glass here and there is nothing to get worked up about. But would you really want to chance it? Not this mom!

However, there is help out there if you are someone who struggles with drug and/or alcohol dependence. Please consult any of the resources below, or contact your healthcare provider for guidance.

American Pregnancy Helpline (866) 942-6466

National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (800) 622-2255

Substance Abuse Treatment Facility Locator (800) 662-4357 

Gaétane F. Borders is President of Peas In Their Pods, an organization that helps to spread awareness about missing children of color. She has dedicated her life to helping families and children, and is a noted child advocate. Gaétane often lends her expertise to various media outlets such as CBS, CNN, and FOX. In addition, she frequently contributes to magazines and newspapers.
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  1. While I agree about not taking drugs and alcohol during pregnancy, there is an undercurrent of energy here, which I detect and find it offensive to the Mother aspect of the Goddess/Wombman.

    You see first we as patriarchs demonised the virgin- the strong independent woman who did not need a man to protect her- virgin had nothing to do with having sex- that was a church twist on truth.
    Next came the post menopause woman- the witch- the crone, the healer, the wise woman and so we tortured her, burned her off, took all her property and destroyed the self sustaining communities, so patriarchs could take control.

    Now is the turn of the Creator Mother herself- the last aspect of the Divine Feminine and here we are as a patriarchal society controlling her, taking her power, making her feel she is under the microscope, and in millions of cases taking her children, using crystal balls and citing she MIGHT emotionally abuse her child in the future.

    The we give the natural children to some needy woman who wants to play mummy...thus creating a whole money making racket that AlCapone would be proud of.

    As a society of fake do gooders we act like the men of god, moralising, passing judgment on others based on our own inner children, who have yet to grow up and mature.

    We- patriarchs lecture to mothers on breast feeding, nutrition etc, but think back to a time when mothers were honoured by the whole community and their mothers and grandmothers all helped out without any payment and society had happy healthy children.
    We have not improved nor evolved. We have more hospitals for sick children, vaccine damaged children with mothers being blamed for that too in order to let corporations off the hook.

    And all this goes back to Fairy stories where we as children were brainwashed to demonise women and women demonise women.

    As they say in law A Mother is never a good enough Mother, but a father is always good enough- be he a druggie, an alco, a criminal.

    So, what of the sperm donor druggie- surely science can prove his sperm is tainted too and causes a certain amout of child abuse?

    Oh forgot, he is the superior male patriarch, the owner of the wombman and her child.

    We need to wake up and stop before we kill off the Great Mother herself Earth.

  2. I dont understand why some other mothers can such terrible act.


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