The Realities of FAS in Kids… and Adults
The epic snow and winds of Winter Storm Jonas are heading toward the East Coast of the United States, meanwhile the Russian Ruble’s freefall continues past 80 Rubles to the Dollar and oil prices are tanking. Thinking of blizzards and rubles already, as a Russian adoptive parent, the recent Washington Post article on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome especially hit home.
Most a-parents chat about the shocking discovery of FAS in a child adopted as a baby. Unless there are obvious developmental delays and telling facial features, nobody knows for a while. Even with older adopted children, it’s not always evident. But the WaPo gave a helpful insight into a world not often seen: what FAS looks like years and decades down the line.
An American mother in her early sixties with an FAS-affected daughter in her early forties is a glimpse behind the curtain in the Oz-like existence of many Eastern European adoptive families where drinking alcohol when pregnant is more of a given than an anomaly. In this case, it was a teen mom indulging on weekends before the dangers of mixing alcohol and pregnancy were clearly connected.
All you have to do is look at the only photo and part of the caption featured: Karli Schrider is 43 years old, but she has the developmental age of a first-grader.
That picture and the text which follows says it all. This is a loving, caring family, the mother realizing long ago that it was her drinking that caused the daughter’s neurological problems. She went through detox and now is trying to spread the word to others: don’t drink if there’s any chance that you may become pregnant.
Don’t drink at all. It need not be binge-drinking or alcoholism to affect a child in utero. Especially as we come up to the major, annual, National March for Life on Washington, DC’s mall tomorrow, the unborn need to be a priority, along with all of us already here on Planet Earth.
————-Tags: FAS in adopted children, FAS in adults, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome characteristics, how much alcohol causes FAS?, how to handle FAS over the years, National March for Life