Dad Applauded for Keeping Down Syndrome Baby But I Feel for the Mom​

 bring leo home

Awesome dad alert! When Samuel Forrest laid eyes on his son Leo -- born on January 21 in Armenia with Down syndrome -- he fell in love and decided he wanted to keep the child. The mom, Ruzan Badalyan, however, wanted to give the child up for adoption. Due to their differences, the couple divorced.


Forrest, a freelance business contractor who plans to fly back to his homeland of New Zealand to raise his son, set up a GoFundMe page titled "Bring Leo Home" to help defray the costs of raising his child alone. In a mere nine days, the page raised over $175,000; the site now says any additional donations will go to charity.

So fine, this dad is pretty darn awesome ... but let's talk about the mom for a minute.

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It probably comes as no surprise that the online commentary pegs this mom as callous, selfish, perhaps even suffering from postpartum depression. Still, though: is it that bad to know your limits? To know you're not ready to take on a special needs child? She wanted to go with adoption -- a perfectly respectable decision. Being a biological mom who chooses the adoption route is also a wonderful thing; it does not make her a bad person.

So please, go ahead and applaud the dad, but don't demonize the mom while you're at it.

How do you feel about the mom?


Image via Bring Leo Home/GoFundMe

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