60% of unwed mothers want adoption, spiral of regret after sending child

Thesis presented in a volume of women’s research

Through investigation, it has been found that six out of 10 Korean mothers want adoption. However, when compared with unwed mothers who raise their children, unwed mothers who decide on adoption have a higher feeling of sadness and a deep regret.

Last year, the Korean Women’s Development Institute (KWDI) surveyed 571 unwed mothers from all parts of the country as the foundation of the thesis “Ways of supporting child-rearing unwed mothers’ lives and self-sufficiency.” This thesis was presented today in the afternoon at Seoul Chunggu Taepyeong Korean Press Center “60th Women’s Policy Forum.”

According to the thesis, at present, 59.1% of unwed mothers who were surveyed wanted adoption during their pregnancy or after they gave birth.  While only 29.5% of the unwed mothers made a plan to raise their children, 11.4% were unsure or couldn’t decide and wavered.

The biggest reason for unwed mothers choosing adoption was  “no economic ability” at 34.4%, followed by “for the baby’s future” at 29.8%; “playing the parent role is difficult” (9.8%),  “for my future” (7.4%) , and “family members’ advice” (7.0%) in that order.

The biggest response from mothers who chose to raise their children regarding their decision was, “It’s my baby, and I have to raise my baby” with 40.8%. “I love my baby” was the response of 33.0%, and “If I send my baby for adoption, it’s like committing a crime,” with 13.6%.

It was found that the decision over whether to raise their children had a big impact on unwed mothers’ psychological and emotional state. Unwed mothers’ psychological states were measured on a scale of 1 point (completely disagree) to 4 points (strongly agree) .The results showed negative psychological states for unwed mothers who decided on adoption, who averaged 3.39 for sad, 2.88 for regret, 2.51 for despair and hopelessness, 2.46 for anger, etc.  Mothers rated their agreement with being “comfortable” or “lighthearted” at only 1.7 on this scale.

translation by me.

“미혼모 60% ‘입양’ 원하지만 아이 보내고 나선 크게 후회”여성정책硏 논문 발표

국내의 미혼모 10명 중 6명은 아이의 입양을 원하는 것으로 조사됐다. 그러나 입양을 결정한 미혼모들은 양육하기로 한 미혼모에 비해 슬픔과 후회하는 감정이 상대적으로 높은 것으로 나타났다.

한국여성정책연구원은 24일 지난해 전국의 미혼모 571명을 상대로 실시한 설문조사를 바탕으로 작성한 ‘양육 미혼모의 삶과 자립 지원 방안’ 논문을 통해 이같이 밝혔다. 이 논문은 이날 오후 서울 중구 태평로 한국프레스센터에서 열리는 ‘제60차 여성정책포럼’에서 발표된다.

논문에 따르면 조사 대상자 중 현재 자녀를 출산했거나 임신 중인 미혼모의 59.1%가 입양을 원한다고 답했다. 양육을 계획하고 있는 미혼모는 29.5%에 불과했으며, 양육 여부를 결정하지 못하고 망설이는 사람은 11.4%였다.

미혼모들이 입양을 선택하는 이유로는 ‘경제적 능력이 없어서’가 34.4%로 가장 많았다. ‘아기의 장래를 위해서’라는 응답이 29.8%, ‘부모 역할을 하기에는 아직 어려서(9.8%)’, ‘나의 장래를 위해서(7.4%)’, ‘가족들의 권유로(7.0%)’ 순으로 뒤를 이었다.

양육을 선택한 미혼모들은 이 같은 결정을 내린 이유에 대해 ‘내 아기는 내가 키워야 하므로’라는 응답이 40.8%로 가장 많았다. ‘아기를 사랑해서’라는 응답은 33.0%, ‘입양하면 죄를 짓는 것 같아서’라는 응답은 13.6%였다.

자녀의 양육 여부 결정은 미혼모의 심리와 정서에 큰 영향을 끼치는 것으로 나타났다. 미혼모의 심리적 상태를 1점(전혀 아니다)에서 4점(매우 그렇다)의 4점 척도로 측정한 결과, 입양을 결정한 미혼모들은 평균적으로 슬프고(3.39), 후회스러우며(2.88), 절망스럽고(2.51), 화가 나는(2.46) 등 부정적인 심리 상태를 보였다. 편하거나 홀가분하다고 느끼는 정도는 1.7점에 불과했다.

이용권기자 freeuse@munhwa.com

Thank you for visiting my blog. I no longer have time to update this blog regularly, but I appreciate your comments, even though I cannot respond to all of them. All comments (except spam) have been allowed to go through unmoderated since June 16, 2014. Any comments you see prior to that date have been read and approved by me. Thanks again, and wishing you peace and blessings.

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