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Author: toni

~ 05/20/09


Normally we at MAMMAKAZE have smart-ass, sarcastic things to say about everything. We can’t help ourselves. Well, we can. But we don’t usually. It’s not our style… 

But here’s a story that’s no snarking matter. It goes to the heart of motherhood and the choices we make regarding our children and their well-being.

There is a Minnesota family THE HAUSERS whose 13 year-old son DANIEL has Hodgkin’s lymphoma.  The family belongs to a religious group that believes in “natural” healing methods and have refused traditional chemotherapy treatment for their son, which could save his life.

Authorities intervened and a court ruled that his parents were medically neglecting Daniel and ordered that the boy get treatment.

Well, guess what? After the court-ordered doctor’s appointment and X-Ray which showed that Daniel’s tumor had grown, Daniel AND his mother COLLEEN HAUSER have disappeared. An arrest warrant has been issued for the mother and there is now a nationwide manhunt for the pair.

So there you have it. So determined are the parents to stick to their religious beliefs that they are willing to go on the run, risk arrest and imprisonment, all to avoid the treatment that might save their son’s life.

So I ask myself:  Would I – as a mother – be willing to take this risk with my child’s life? I know the answer to that. But I’m not the right person to ask. I mean, there is nothing in this world (or outside of it) that takes precedence over the well-being of my kid. But that’s just me. And I openly admit that I cannot understand or relate to this mother who is putting her desires and beliefs over the physical well-being of her child.

What about what the boy wants? Well here’s the thing. The boy himself has said he doesn’t want the chemo. But it turns out the boy has a learning disability and can’t read. So I’ve got to ask – is this really the boy talking or is this the influence of his family? Does he really have all the information necessary to make this decision? Does he really know what he’s dealing with? Does he understand the risks? And would he make this same decision when he was say, 21, and legally free to do so?

Our power of persuasion as parents over our children is profound (the teen years to the contrary). Who they become, what they believe has much to do with who we are. BUT shouldn’t they have the chance to actually BECOME? Aren’t these parents taking that chance away from their son by making this choice?

I don’t know if there is a right or wrong answer. I only know what I would do.

WHAT WOULD YOU DO? Would your religious beliefs outweigh all else? Would turning your back on that part of your belief mean you weren’t devout? Would it be worth taking the risk with your child’s life?

We’d love to hear your COMMENTS. Click below.

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  1. I so enjoy your funny comments daily, but just like in real life there are times we have to be serious and talking about the little boy with cancer is one of those moments. I don’t think anyone’s religious beliefs should be messed with BUT I feel God gives you a brain to use and if those parents would READ they would find this type of cancer is about 95% cureable with treatment, if given in time. I would give my child every chance at life and. therefore would go for the treatment. This child is 13 but has a disability so I don’t think he really is making a decision only verbalizing what his parents are saying and discussing in front of him. I heard last night on Nancy Grace (I think) that the father has changed his mind and now wants his son to have treatment. Maybe he can change his wife’s and son’s minds in time that they can save his life. I pray so. Thanks for letting me state my opinion. What do the rest of you think??

    Comment by MomofMaci — May 20, 2009 @ 1:21 pm

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