Saturday, September 3, 2005

Maternal Love—Is It Instinctive?

From a commenter arguing in favor of abortion rights:

"Maternal love is not instinctive. It's learned and chosen."

I would like to ask two groups of people to comment on this:

1. Mothers

2. Licensed psychotherapists, psychologists, or psychiatrists

Specifically, I would like to know, if a woman feels no instinctive maternal love towards her child, can she be called psychologically healthy? Or is the complete lack of instinctive maternal love a sign of mental illness?

When you give your answer, please explain on what evidence it's based, e.g. personal experience, professional experience, studies, or any combination of those things.

Please note: To keep this comments thread relevant to the post, only commenters who fit into the above two categories—either mothers or psychology professionals (or both)—should comment. Others will be deleted. Also, please stay on topic, answering the questions above. I'd like this particular thread to be a vacation from outright prolife-vs.-prochoice arguments. Thanks in advance, very much, for your participation