Watching women gain strength ...

... is a beautiful thing to see.

It's especially beautiful for me to watch Korean mothers face the challenge of taking control of their futures. It will be no mean feat for them to do this, given the patriarchial nature of Korean society. But they're doing it all the same - standing up, speaking out, demanding the right to be mothers to the children they carried.

I often wonder what my children's mothers think when they read these articles. They undoubtedly read them, because the topic is one that's often in the Korean news. I'm sure they feel regret when they read stories about women who buck the system and keep their babies; resignation, too. And sadness mixed with a little fear, I think, when they imagine how their lives might have unfolded had they made the same decision. Yes, I'm sure they feel all of these and more.

I hope, though, that sorrow isn't the only emotion these articles bring to them. I hope that the experiences of the women in these articles gives my children's mothers the courage to do what they haven't allowed themselves to do before: Reach out to their children. I hope and pray that reading about women like Choi Houng-suk gives strength to those who couldn't find it before, to seek and hopefully find the children they surrendered.

I like to imagine my children's mothers reading articles like these, the possibility of reunion turning in their minds, hands reaching tentatively for telephones or paper to take the first tenuous steps. Whenever I read one, my thoughts and prayers inevitably start to say just do it.

Start looking. You will find your child. He is here. She is here. Safe and sound and waiting to know you.

More here:

Reaching out to unwed mothers
Raising child not a matter of choice
Unmarried mothers coming out of isolation
Helping our single mothers


korean war baby said…
Hello Third Mom,
"Like minds", I posted on this same article today. It is my hope that exactly what you wrote will happen...that Korean mothers will see the bravery and risks that the 50 women of Korean Unwed Mother's Support Network members are doing by sharing their stories. There are literally thousands of Birth mothers who ARE keeping their children now a days, yet many are keeping it quiet. I have met many of them and they are just incredible. Some of them do speak English and would love to hear encouragement from you. Please check my post to get their links.
I met Dr. Richard Boas, MD who helped to start the group KUMSN and I also linked articles from NY Times on him.
I believe it will take a long time but more and more Korean unwed mothers (Now 37%) are keeping their children. Everyday, though 1-4,000 are aborted, 21 are born, 7 staying with their mothers, 7 secretly adopted in Civil Courts, 3.5 to Domestic and 3.5 to InterCountry Adoptions.
That is just the way it is...
Cavatica said…
I hope you are right and I hope something similar happens in China in for this next generation of kids.

Also, I gave you an award because I love just these kinds of posts. I have learned so much from you. Do whatever you want about the award. I just wanted to express my appreciation.
kyungmee said…
Hi Margie!! Happy New Year! I am sorry for not visitng for so long! I just read your posts to catch up. Congrats on ypour new employment..I am soo happy for you! You are a very strong woman and while you were going through so continued with so much responsibilities and commitment to helping have great discussions and hope here! I know this is a posts of Korean womden gaining strength but I thought of you when I read the title:)
Margie said…
Awww, thanks Kyung Mee, I really appreciate it. Honestly, my experience was nothing compared to the thousands - millions? - out of work for months on end, years even. I was incredibly fortunate, and know it.

Thanks for stopping by, Don, I will read that post!

And Cavatica, thank you! Totally undeserved, as I've been an incredibly lazy blogger these past few months!
Mad Tomato said…
It would be great to hear unwed moms in Korea to finally find the courage to work and speak for themselves.

Great post! Thanks for sharing this.
Terra said…
It is my hope too that exactly what you wrote will happen. Thank you for making it easy for everyone to vote.
korean war baby said…
This a small beginning of 50 Korean Unwed Mothers Support Network:

Dr. Richard Boas helped to start it. He is not against adoption but decided to support women to try to keep their children. I just met him and you might comment on the blog, some of the brave single mothers do speak or read enough to help the others.

Someone said, "it takes a village?"

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