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Adoption, a bundle of joy, not burden

Over ten couples attended the personalised session where three Pune-based counsellors talked on adoption at NASSCOM 1000 startup warehouse, Kharadi.

pune Updated: Jan 22, 2018 16:10 IST
Ananya Barua
Ananya Barua
Hindustan Times, Pune
adoption,burden,joy foundation
(From left) Shyne Devasia Kochuveed, Ivanka (child) and Protima Sharma share a light moment at the event held in city on Sunday. (Shankar Narayan/HT Photo)

Ivanka was just three months old when she filled the family of Protima Sharma and her husband Shyne Devasia Kochuveed with joy. Now, the two-year-old is an unofficial mascot of joy for the adoption counselling camp organised by NGO Families of Joy Foundation on Sunday.

Over ten couples attended the personalised session where three Pune-based counsellors, Protima Sharma, 39, Smriti Gupta, 37, and Mukti Shah, 34, talked on adoption atNASSCOM 1000 startup warehouse, Kharadi.

Bringing her up, Ivanka’s mother Protima shared, has been a treat, especially because of the support she and her entrepreneur husband Kochuveed, received from their family.“We were surprised when my mother-in-law expressed her delight in the idea of adopting a child. It is but a myth that adoption is always associated with sadness, and unnecessary drama, mostly thanks for its incorrect representation in mainstream films and serials. it should be put across to parents and children, as a happy affair,” said Protima.

Also an adoption counsellor, Protima explained the importance of letting the children know about their adoption.“Our children deserve to know, although it is not a rule, but parents can always convey it to them in a way depending on their age. For instance, in case of Ivanka, we keep telling her bedtime stories that personify our bond, or tell her tales about mythical figures like Krishna. It is important forparents to internalise and also convey to our children, that adoption is just one event, a happy one. But, now that event is over and that we have moved on,” she said.

“It is not a burden or a regret and so it should not be portrayed as the last option or resort for parents who have been unable to conceive biologically. It sets a negative precedent. I feel more parents should chose adoption beyond the limitations, just because it is in fact a beautiful and joyous thing to do,” said Smriti, another parent and counsellor with Families of Joy Foundation. She along with her husband Sriram Subramanian, a technology entrepreneur, have adopted two young daughters,aged four and five, after having decided not to conceive biological children.

Speaking about the impact of positive adoption language, and the issues caused by the lack of it, she said,“Strange questions and adjectives are often associated with adoption which we are trying to change. For instance, the terms like,‘own child’ or‘real parents’. Why not simply use biological child or parents?Language is very important as it forms the basis of one’s psychological and emotional growth and so we cannot afford to get this wrong.”

Talking about her professional and personal journey, she criticised the incidence of preferential adoption trend in parents nowadays.“I personally had decided to adopt a slightly older child with special needs, during by second adoption, because most of the times, parents do not consider adopting them and rather go for babies. The issue I have seen is that parents come with biases and preferences to chose fair-skinned, healthy and plump babies, as opposed to children older than two years, with or without medical or physical issues.”

First Published: Jan 22, 2018 16:08 IST