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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 01, 2013 1:57 pm 
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These stories are absolutely terrifying. I would never have imagined that we'd be facing the real possibility of women being stripped of rights and agency, and effectively demoted to non-person status the minute they become pregnant. My first pregnancy was an accident, and I was about 4-5 weeks along by the time I found out. I was in college and still going to parties and stuff a lot, so at my first prenatal appointment I asked if it was cause for concern that I'd had a few drinks and smoked pot before I knew I was pregnant; my OB-GYN said not to worry, don't do it anymore, and everything would be fine. And it was! But if If I were planning a family nowadays, I'd be trepidatious about taking a little passenger on board (and afraid to open mouth if I did), for fear the hospital would have cops waiting to catch the little darling and whisk it away to foster care the moment it emerged. Making expectant mothers too scared to discuss their history can only have negative consequences…the idea of women not feeling safe enough to share their anxieties and ask their doctors the millions of questions that come up during pregnancy is just awful.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 01, 2013 2:31 pm 
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I heard about the case at St Barnabas years ago and is part of why I didn't ever see doctors associated with that hospital, even though that's totally irrational, and it's not like you are protected from bullshiitake like that by being at any particular hospital. There are so many cases like this out there and lots of cases of forced c-sections. I felt lucky, even though it is such a horrible thing to have to feel lucky about, that I was not forced into a c-section when I gave birth, since I was forcing my care providers to behave so far outside the lines of common medical practice by waiting it out so long.


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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 01, 2013 3:06 pm 
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Well the pediatricians at Morristown Memorial threatened to call DYFS on me if I took Leela out from the hospital against medical advice, despite the fact that her pediatrician was willing to write us a script for a bili blanket and a visiting nurse for her "newborn jaundice."

Their tone really was "do what we say or else." The problem with the medical establishment using DYFS to punish pregnant women/parents for not complying with their treatment suggestions is that you set in place events that can't be undone.

I thought the Harvard Law article (http://www.law.harvard.edu/students/org ... 81-112.pdf) was excellent and it talks about how even the stress of labor can be construed as a lack of competency and then held against the parent, so in effect a woman who has mental health issues can be deemed to be abusing her child just by giving birth to him/her.

And on some level, I feel for the DYFS workers. If you read the Appellate Court order (on the last page), its kind of interesting how many medical professionals evaluated the parents and came to about 20 different diagnoses for the parents before finally agreeing that they were no threat to the child. If you are not trained as a mental health professional, but also not getting reliable information from the professionals you rely on to inform your decisions, then of course you err on the side of what is safest for the child. It sounds like the Courts ended the attempt to terminate parental rights when the child was 4.5 and that unfortunately at this point, the child has a strong bond with the foster parents who want to be able to adopt hr, so it is very traumatic for her to still be in limbo about who her family is now that she is almost 8. It really is a no win situation for them.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 01, 2013 4:13 pm 
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i can't help but think of DYFS or Family Services as an echo of local police forces-- agencies that used to have their own function, and which have been charged with carrying out functions which are really not their issue or their responsibility because of political pressure [police with immigration enforcement, now DYFS with weird prenatal bullshiitake] and ultimately end up doing everything poorly.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sun Dec 01, 2013 11:01 pm 
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Tofulish, yes, obviously, it doesn't matter which hospital, they all have the same bullshiitake going on. Your story is why it was silly of me to think I could avoid that kind of thing by being at MM instead of StB. (Although, luckily, I got no meaningful flack for saying "no" to pretty much everything the whole way through my stay there.)

I'll save that Harvard article for later reading. When I read about this specific case however long ago, it sounded like the birth parents had actually failed to show up at hearings (because they weren't informed of them sometimes), and that that had exacerbated the situation from early on.

I think DYFS is screwed - there is no way for them to get appropriate information to make choices about children's welfare, they are too often directed by the police to do things that proper legal channels haven't had time to make determinations about, and of course you can't just separate an 8-yr-old from a family they grew up with. There is no way for that story to end well and who the hell knows if they were acting appropriately (based on the info they had) in the original case. But really the problem in most of these stories is medical staff who think they're gods, think that it is in their purview to make medical decisions for people (which it absolutely never is - even in the most extreme cases of a person actually being incapacitated, it is the role of legal proxies and the courts to make those decisions based on the advice of the medical staff), and who routinely infantilize women and treat children as inanimate objects.


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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Tue Dec 03, 2013 8:12 am 
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These photos struck me as particularly creepy in light of our current discussion, since they seem to fit right in with the theme of motherhood - even when it's still only pregnancy - making women "disappear."

http://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign ... 30&index=0

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Tue Dec 03, 2013 5:18 pm 
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The judgment for adoption has been publicized. No judgment regarding the cesarean section has been publicized.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Tue Dec 03, 2013 10:26 pm 
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What a douche. It sounds like the whole system is forked if this judge is permitted to do this. It makes no sense to me that a British court can terminate the parental rights of an Italian national and a Senegalese national (and what exactly was the argument for terminating the father's rights, except his immigration status?). This should be a giant forking international blow up. And exactly why would it be a terrible thing to find a temporary placement for the child (in Italy, near the mother's home if possible, with regular visitation) until whatever stupid condition proving her stability could be fulfilled? Ugh.

If there were already proceedings against her parental fitness in Italy, which he sort of hints at, this should all just have been sent over to them to add to the pile after the child was born. I also have a really hard time understanding how she couldn't have been fit to make her own medical decisions after being held in the hospital and presumably medicated for 6 weeks if she is apparently in awesome condition to testify in front of the court after being properly medicated.


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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 04, 2013 3:41 pm 
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Artificial hymens.

Discuss.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 04, 2013 5:03 pm 
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They've been around for a while, in some form or another. If only more people understood that they can break at any time, and not due to penetration. Mine broke when I was 10 from running in PE at school.


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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 04, 2013 5:24 pm 
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Um. Well. Um. At least it's cheaper than hymen restoration surgery?

8ball wrote:
They've been around for a while, in some form or another. If only more people understood that they can break at any time, and not due to penetration. Mine broke when I was 10 from running in PE at school.

Even better, if only more people understood that a woman's worth isn't tied to her virginity. But yes, it's pretty amazing that anyone still actually believes a broken or absent hymen actually means anything at all.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 05, 2013 1:24 pm 
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Here is an interesting article regarding the Italian/UK case.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 05, 2013 1:25 pm 
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I just read this article How Accepting Leggings as Pants Made Me a Better Feminist It was interesting cause I have had the same internal dialogue in my head about leggings (THEY AREN'T PANTS) but whatever if it makes people comfortable and happy who am I to judge.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 05, 2013 3:26 pm 
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rachell37 wrote:
Here is an interesting article regarding the Italian/UK case.


This is helpful.

However, it doesn't really answer all my questions. For instance, the question about why the father was not more seriously involved - in the judgment 8ball posted above the judge said that he had written a letter opposing the adoption. The fact that he couldn't travel there should not mean his parental rights are negated (unless they're saying that improperly documented immigrants/guests don't have family rights in the EU, which I'm having a hard time believing). Where's the determination that he isn't a fit parent? The article you posted also says that the Italian courts decided that it should be handled by the UK, but the judgment doesn't reference that, which makes me think it's not true/not the full truth, because that's a pretty essential element in deciding who has jurisdiction, no?


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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 05, 2013 4:02 pm 
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I wish I could offer more information, however health and welfare is one part of the Court's work that I'm not well versed in. I doubt that the father not being at the hearing meant his parental rights were negated, it's probably more to do with his situation where he has no status, however this is not to say that improperly documented immigrants/guests don't have family rights in the EU. I just don't understand the legislation enough to be able to say more on the subject.


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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 05, 2013 5:09 pm 
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In American lingo, if the child was put up for adoption, his parental rights were terminated. In the lingo of the judgment you posted, the judge said something to the effect of ignoring the parents' lack of consent. Either way, it works out the same way - the guy doesn't get to be the legal parent of his kid anymore. It just didn't seem that the judge was much interested in making it clear why the father's claim to the child was ignored - I just can't see how such a thing could happen without showing that the father was not fit to parent, and how can you do that if he's not even there to defend himself?


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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 06, 2013 10:33 am 
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LazySmurf wrote:
I just read this article How Accepting Leggings as Pants Made Me a Better Feminist It was interesting cause I have had the same internal dialogue in my head about leggings (THEY AREN'T PANTS) but whatever if it makes people comfortable and happy who am I to judge.


Thanks for posting this. Just the other day I was judging a young woman in my office who wears leggings as pants and this definitely called me out on being so judgey.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 06, 2013 11:35 am 
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I have never ever heard anyone say that leggings aren't trousers/pants. I know people who wear them with skirts/dresses but I never have never personally made a habit of that. I've always just worn them with tops and jumpers.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 06, 2013 11:43 am 
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That's such a UK thing though! When leggings came back in fashion several years ago I was so confused when I went to England and Scotland and everyone was wearing them as pants. It took awhile for that trend to reach America but it definitely has now! I will never personally be able to get on board with it but to each their own. Nowadays I just look around and think how many people must have freezing cold asparagi.


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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 06, 2013 11:48 am 
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vijita wrote:
That's such a UK thing though! When leggings came back in fashion several years ago I was so confused when I went to England and Scotland and everyone was wearing them as pants. It took awhile for that trend to reach America but it definitely has now! I will never personally be able to get on board with it but to each their own. Nowadays I just look around and think how many people must have freezing cold asparagi.


On the contrary! Leggings keep me much warmer than jeans. Must be because they're so tight? I don't know, but I definitely feel warmer when I wear leggings. Like, good leggings, not those cheapie ones that you can sort of see your underwear through. I don't wear leggings as pants often, but sometimes I do as a casual, around the house or to the grocery store outfit. I can't really make it work for work, since they're just a liiiiiittle too close to pajamas for me. I mean, unless I'm wearing them with nice boots and a blouse, I guess. But then I feel too dressed up. Who knew leggings were so versatile?

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 06, 2013 11:55 am 
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See now I'm confused what you guys wear them as! haha. With skirts and dresses or under trousers? I'd boil with trousers over them!

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 06, 2013 11:56 am 
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Sorry, pants.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 06, 2013 12:04 pm 
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I wear them with skirts and dresses! Because they are warmer than tights, and warmth dictates 100% of my fashion choices.

I do wear them as pants for dance class, but who does ballet in pants?


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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 06, 2013 12:07 pm 
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I wear them with skirts and dresses as a warmer substitute for tights, but also as just pants with a normal length top when I'm feeling sporty or super casual. This morning I went out with my kid to jump in puddles wearing leggings, a fleece cardigan of normal shirt length, and rain boots. That is a pretty normal relaxing and running a few errands outfit for me (besides the boots - that is rain dependent).


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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 06, 2013 4:55 pm 
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I wear leggings as trousers for aerial circus stuff, but also under my jeans/trousers as an extra thermal layer in winter. I don't think I would go out and about in just leggings for trousers, mainly because I think I would be too cold.

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