Baby Veronica, the adorable curly-haired 4-year-old who has been at the center of one of the country's most contentious custody battles, has reportedly been handed over to her adoptive parents, Matt and Melanie Capobianco. The couple had been fighting to get back custody of the little girl they adopted ever since, at 27 months old, she was taken away from them and handed back to her father, Dusten Brown, a member of Cherokee Nation. Veronica's birth mother put the girl up for adoption while she was still pregnant. The mother and her fiance at the time, Dusten, began arguing and cut off communication with each other, but apparently not before Dusten text messaged her that he gave up his parental rights. Courts would later say this is not binding. At any rate, very shortly after Veronica's birth, Dusten began fighting it.
The legalities of what happened here are complex and there are plenty who side with Dusten, plenty with the Capobiancos. But I can't help wondering what it is going to be like for a little girl who has now lived with her biological father and his family for two years to suddenly be wrested away from them.
She does not understand legalities. Adults can barely understand them.
At least from what media reports were showing, Veronica was blossoming in her home and doing well. I certainly understand that having raised her from the time she was an infant, the adoptive parents must have been a tremendous bond with her and simply wanted their little girl back.
But in a country with so many fathers who slack off on their parental duties, or who don't even do them at all, here we have a man who is willing to do anything to keep his little girl. Should that not be commended and rewarded somehow?
No word on whether the adoptive parents will even let him visit. It would be understandable that they'd have some negative feelings toward him and not want him having a relationship with her. But how is she going to feel about all of this when she's old enough to understand it -- old enough to understand that she had a father who wanted her, wanted her badly, and she was taken away from him? Something about this doesn't sit right.
There are so many children in the world who aren't wanted at all. I'm going to ask the obvious question as to whether or not the Capobiancos could have found it in themselves to let go of Veronica and to find another little girl or boy who desperately needed a home.
It will be interesting to see what kind of relationship Veronica has with her parents when she's older.
What do you think of this decision?
Image via CBS News