"young women who did not live in a maternity residence during some portion of their pregnancy had a predicted probabiliity of placing that was less than half of that of women who did live in such residences." (p. 209) From: Namerow, P., Kalmuss, D., & Cushman, L. (1993). The determinants of young women's pregnancy-resolution choices. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 3(2), 193-215.
Framing is a term used in media studies, sociology and psychology. It is the process of influencing a group or individual's perception of the meanings attributed to words or phrases. A frame defines the packaging of an element in such a way as to encourage certain interpretations and to discourage others. Think of it like a picture frame. It surrounds what you see and how you see a picture. It influences your view of the picture beyond.
For example, lets consider the "home for unwed mothers".
Why is it necessary to add the adjective of "unwed" to mothers? What difference does it make if the mothers are wed or unwed?
The difference is that for many in American society, particularly the very religious, unwed and mother are terms that should not be used in the same sentence. They are bad. They induce a feeling of digust and horror.
The term unwed mother is translated in the minds of many into "single dirty slut girl" or worse. By adding the qualifier of "unwed" to "mother" one is influencing anothers thoughts on that mother. They are suggesting there is something wrong with the mother. She is bad, or wrong, or slutty or deranged and alas, certainly not qualified to be a mother. Sooo, lets take that baby and give it to a nice clean wedded woman who cannot have her own baby.
How about that for framing?
Why dont we refer to those "homes" as "homes for expectant mothers"? Or how about "homes for mothers". Perhaps I am biased (because I lived in one of those lovely "homes") but I feel removing the "unwed" implies a more helpful environment geared towards keeping mother and child together.
Remove the bias.
Remove the frame.
Gives these mothers and children a chance.
Those who gift their bodily organs to save the life of others are called organ donors. Why dont we call those that surrender their children to adoption to women who cannot have their own children as baby donors? Ooh, that sounds ugly, right? We dont want adoption to sound ugly. It must sound lovely. We must give it a nice gilded frame.
If it is a home that is going to help a mother make an educated, informed, decision in the best interest of HER and HER CHILD, can we call it a "Home for Mothers".
My vote is yes.