I think the reasoning’s on why a woman may continue her substance use throughout pregnancy is very complicated to understand. There are many differing reasoning’s from each woman to another. As we have talked and learnt addictions themselves are very complex with a multitude of causations, or antecedents. The fact that a women can carry children and are expected to be morally and physically responsible for the wellbeing of a fetus does not change the dynamics of addiction which often are preexisting to the pregnancy. Therefore why does much of society assume that women should automatically be able to abstain from substance use once finding out they are pregnant, when they are unable to abstain before finding out they are pregnant. Society makes it appear, as it is a mind over matter decision and a simple choice. I question this assumption and hope many look beyond this for an explanation.
As stated by Cormier, Dell, and Poole (2004) substance use arises from a interplay in biology, genetic, psychological, social, cultural, relational, environmental and spiritual factors, these factors may be stronger of a force then the desire for a mother to quit use for the safety of her child in the womb. However she cannot be blamed for this as the sole contributing factor in why her body was in need of this substance. Yet within society the shame, stigma and barriers that are placed on woman usual direct a message that she is solely responsible. This makes it harder for her to seek or find, and at times even hinders her in being directed and informed of trea...
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...fetus. I however believe that these stats show although it is a prevalent issue in today’s society that there are far more women who due recognize the consequences. Furthermore, there are many women who take on the difficult issue of abstain from the substance to protect their child and do so successfully can be very difficult.
Ultimately, I believe a pregnant woman faces all the same challenges of individuals that have substance use issues and are barriers for them in stopping their use. Yet, I believe pregnant women face more blocks and barriers in stopping their use with the added shame, and/ or personal guilt they may place on themselves or others place on. Exploration of preventative measures need exploring and could support a woman in success. Along with the ecological model to help assist those who find themselves engaged in substance use during pregnancy.
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