To be honest the AHR (assisted human reproduction) legislation and the position of children troubles me more than marriage equality. Nonetheless, I’m not suggesting that I accept the idea that the forthcoming referendum can be viewed as a matter of simple equality. There’s no doubt in my mind that this legislation has been separated from the marriage referendum deliberately because it’s highly likely that if the legislation was part of the referendum it would swing many people in the direction of a no vote.
Back in the thirties my grandmother gave birth to my father outside marriage. I was 19 before I even knew my grandmother was alive – and to make matters worse I learned of her existence on the day of my father’s funeral!
I’ve survived quite well without her of course but nonetheless from the moment I knew about my grandmother’s existence I’ve always experienced her absence as a loss – more so as I get older. I never knew the woman but that wasn’t my fault – it’s never the child’s fault – rather it’s the deliberate deprivation of a child by adults. But the deprivation doesn’t stop there. My grandmother later married and had other children. I have no idea if they know about my father or about my sister and I.
Here’s the question: Why should I have been denied the experience of knowing my grandmother because adults messed up? Why must adults impose their issues on children so often?
It goes without saying that I’ve always experienced the death of my father as a deprivation.
Interestingly, I know nothing of my paternal grandfather and I’ve survived without him. Nonetheless, why should I as a child have been denied the experience of knowing him because it suited an adult agenda?
On Sunday last, Mother’s Day (or should that be parent’s day?) I spent some time with my eighty three year old mother. Sometimes I look at her knowing that I’ve limited time with her and I marvel at this woman, at the fact that I came from her womb, that I am flesh of her flesh, and I find the suggestion that this doesn’t matter to be outrageously stupid and beyond reason.
Here’s the question: Why should a child be deliberately denied the experience of a mother because two adult men can’t naturally give birth to a child?
And why should a child be deliberately denied the experience of a father because two adult women can’t naturally give birth to a child?