Doctor tells mother of baby with down syndrome: “don’t expect much”

The mother of a child with down syndrome talks about how her doctor reacted when her baby was born:

“So they diagnosed Amelia right away, on the delivery table. She was barely out, I barely got a chance to catch my breath or marvel at my first baby when the doctor pours this bad news all over us. “She’s got down syndrome,” he says to us, very coldly. And after he tells us about blood testing and confirmations and all this stuff, we say to him, “But what does this mean? What should we expect?” And just as coldly he says, “Don’t expect much. Maybe she’ll grow up to be an elevator operator. Don’t expect much.” We clung to each other and cried.”

Rayna Rapp Testing Women, Testing the Fetus: the Social Impact of Amniocentesis in America (New York: Routledge, 1999) 263

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Author: Sarah

Sarah is a member of the board of The Pro-life Alliance of Gays and Lesbians.

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