The Onus of Adoption is Worse for a Single Mother

The Onus of Adoption is Worse for a Single Mother

Adopting a baby is not considered acceptable in most of the societies in India. There are those who still have a very narrow perception of an adopted child as their heir. But nonetheless, with the rise of a cosmopolitan culture over the years, there has been a drastic change in the way people think. Broad minded couples are going forward with adoptions and its becoming more acceptable in the society.

For working people, who do not wish to get married but want to give themselves a chance to experience the bliss of parenthood, are increasing following the adoption trend.

Some of the key provisions for adoption in India include:

  • There are specific guidelines and documentation for each group of prospective adoptive parents.
  • A single female or a married couple can adopt a child. In India, a single male is usually not eligible to be an adoptive parent especially of a girl child.
  • Under the Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act of 1956, a single parent or married couple is not permitted to adopt more than one child of the same sex. However, a few years back, actress Sushmita Sen had successfully won the case to adopt her second child who is also a female.

According to the reports by the Indian Association for Promotion of Adoption and Child Welfare, the case of adoption by single women is rising in number. However, one cannot lose sight of the numerous hurdles which come along in case of  single parents and that too for women.

Just by the virtue of being a woman, she is considered incompetent to raise a child on her own. This is especially in regards to her financial stability which is a major prerequisite for someone wanting to adopt a child.  Agreed that the provisions of a certain degree of financial stability and family background are necessary but it should not be stretched beyond that. After all, a financially independent woman is considered as a rare sight in the indian society.  The orthodox perception of a man being the sole breadwinner and financially capable of taking care of the family still prevails.

In terms of adoption, single mothers are disadvantaged not just at the hands of the society but legally as well.  Some institutions make it necessary to mention the father’s name. Here, women have to give countless proof of their competence and ability to take care of their child without any assistance.

In the West, homosexual couples are fortunate enough to become parents of an adopted child but in India,  it is highly inconceivable for homosexuals to become parents in the years to come. The rate of acceptance is much slower than what it should be. Civil Societies and NGOs are working in the direction of making amends and looking at the impact they have on the governance, we hope the adoption culture  will get more acceptance than ever before.

Bollywood actress, Sushmita Sen is an idol for women who are wanting to be single parents and are financially capable of handling the expenses of the child. Her bold move created a stir in the society as well as in the Bollywood industry. We salute her for her spirit to fight the judgemental society in the most courageous manner.

It is just disheartening to see that single women are considered incapable of adopting a child and taking responsibility. Our society should be more encouraging and open minded in this aspect. We hope that in the coming years, single mothers have it easy while trying to adopt and there is leniency observed during documentation and other legal issues.

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