Bezrukova O. N., Samoylova V. A. “Invisible” mothers: social profile of women abandoning their newborn babies, Р. 57-73

The article is dedicated to the analysis of the social profile and typological features characteristic of the mothers that abandoned their newborn babies. We have interviewed 2000 respondents in 8 federal districts of the Russian Federation, conducted 27 expert interviews and 15 focus groups (N = 142) with managers, specialists, and parents. We have distinguished the social groups of mothers that have a higher risk of child abandoning as well as surrendering them to the baby boxes based on the evaluation of citizens, experts, parents and governmental agencies and NGOs. We have come to the conclusion that the predominant reason of child rejection or abandonment is a lack of internal and external resources. The research helped to identify the regional differences of the social groups of abandoning mothers. In Saint Petersburg they mostly belong to migrants, in Ufa those are the women who gave birth to an illegitimate child and may be afraid of harsh condemnation as a result of the influence of national and religious norms. In Krasnodar, Perm and Vladimir we more frequently noted women with a lack of external resources and support, both financial and social. At the same time, our researchers in Vladimir quite frequently pointed to deviant groups, and in Perm referred to the intact ones. We have reached a conclusion Russia lacks a developed infrastructure to support vulnerable families with newborn children. Russia lacks an established system of crisis centers for pregnant women in difficult life situations. There are significant regional and territorial differences in providing assistance to mothers, and in general there is a lack of integration between the government agencies. We offer solutions to comprehensively support pregnant women that belong to vulnerable groups.
Read in PDF