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Rosie Walter

George meets Rosie Walter. Rosie’s mother Gladys was married to a white man and had fallen pregnant with the child of her black lover, and left the marital home.

George explores the field of mixed race adoption as one of the areas in which identity has been heavily discussed as a key concern. Rosie’s story illustrates the types of social attitudes which contributed to the over-representation of mixed race children in the care system.
Rosie’s mother Gladys was married to a white man, but had a secret black lover with whom she had a child. Keeping her pregnancy a secret, she felt she had to leave the marital home. Rosie explains how her mother Gladys was unable to cope with the difficulties of single parenting due to ill health and depression.
Gladys sought help from family but her sister wouldn’t take them in for fear of the social stigma attached to having a mixed race baby in their family - they were worried what the neighbors might think. Gladys would now have to make a decision which would mark Rosie’s life forever: she contacted the National Children’s Home. Rosie would spend the next 16 years of her life in the care system and as with many other mixed race individuals, questions of identity and ‘fitting in’ would be raised throughout Rosie’s life.

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26 seconds

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