Advocacy vs Ownership

As a parent of a medically complex child I have been baffled by the assumption that parents who disagree with health care professionals think they “own” their children.

Parents DO NOT own their children, neither does the state, or the hospitals, or the health care professional looking after a child. Children are not a possession to be owned.

They are a parents responsibility, and the job of any professional whose care they are in. But the flip side of a parental responsibility for their child’s health and welfare is to advocate for them. Parents advocate for what they believe is in their child’s best interest, independent of what one doctor, or two or more, or a judge or a court.

Parents don’t do this out of a misplaced sense of ownership, they do this out of love, out of hope. Out of a belief that as their child’s advocates they have a right to a second or third opinion. Regardless of their age or economic status.

In the knowledge that medical error is the third leading cause of death in the medical world, not including all the other errors that can lead into lifelong complications. That as much as healthcare professionals can have the best of intentions they are not impervious to scrutiny or flaws, they are not God, they do not know everything.

In a world where medical science and biomedical research and understanding is evolving at an unprecedented rate. That any doctors believe they know it all, and that their professional opinion is more important than another’s or a parents right to advocate with hope and faith and get more opinions, or relocate.

With scandals and whistleblowers, controversy is rife. With funding and research, whose motive is right?

No one is impervious to their external environment. Doctors or parents. Judges or jurors. Second opinions the world over.

Everyone has an opinion or say.

Who is deemed right will vary by day.

But though not all parents are caring or loving, those who are should be cherished and blessed for their struggles.

When they advocate for what they believe is their child’s best, it’s an insult to take them to court to contest.

Advocating for hope and a chance should be blessed. Who are you to say any hope is void, when professionals around the world – one view – will not hold.

So, here I am, as a parent who’s been bullied and pushed around by professionals, who I have a right to disagree with. To say, I know it is hard to face opposition but I know my intentions are in faith and not tainted. But as a parent we advocate with our hearts, for our children.

Whether you believe in God or the “Universe” or something different all together. I believe we are blessed with our children, and they with us, to fight for them and their best in our love.


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