UPDATE : 2022.12.5 Mon 00:49
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Having Children Outside of Marriage: Sayuri Sparks Discourse in Korea
  • By Kim Da-eun, cub-reporter
  • 승인 2020.12.07 08:53
  • 호수 285
  • 댓글 0

▲ Sayuri announced that she had given birth to a baby via SNS (source: Sayuri’s Instagram)

Sayuri, a Japanese citizen and a TV celebrity in Korea, announced that she had given birth to a baby in Japan on November 4. Before her pregnancy, she had been told her obstetricians and gynecologists that it would be difficult for her to become pregnant through natural insemination. After a long period of consideration, she came to the conclusion that she wanted to have a child, but she didn’t want to marry someone she didn’t love just so that she could have a child. So she chose to go to a sperm bank in Japan to become a mother through artificial insemination despite being single.

She said, “In Korea, there is still severe social stigma associated with having a child out of wedlock, and it has been illegal since 2005 for an unmarried woman to get in vitro fertilization.” Hearing her story, there are conflicting opinions in Korea on whether having a child outside of marriage should be socially acceptable. Many who oppose the concept are worried about the breakdown of the image of a traditional family. The Campus Journal asked the students of Changwon National University for their opinions.

84.8 percent of the 33 respondents responded positively. They said, "Since marriage is an option, pregnancy should also be an option." "I don't think there's anything wrong with raising a child as long as there’s a sense of responsibility." "Choosing to get in vitro fertilization is a much better parenting decision than parents who don't take responsibility for a child even though they chose to get married and have children.

15.2 percent of the students responded negatively. They said, "No matter how financially stable the single parent is, it will be difficult for a child to grow up with a single parent." "Not knowing anything about the father could lead to identity problems in the child." "I think it's a selfish choice for a woman, considering the stress that a child will have on his or her birth.”

As people continued to express their support and criticism, the Korean Society Obstetrics and Gynecology said, "we need to listen to the voice of the people regarding further discussion of the subject." However, hasty changes to improve the system are bound to have numerous unforeseen side effects. This is why it’s important to take the necessary time to create relevant legislation.

However, it would be more important to increase social awareness around single-parent families, and to reduce the prejudice around these families, especially families who had children outside of marriage. Our society is paying keen attention to what kind of societal changes Sayuri will make.

By Kim Da-eun, cub-reporter  daun021800@naver.com

<저작권자 © The Campus Journal, 무단 전재 및 재배포 금지>

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