Dong Genlao, a 24-year-old new father, was giddy over the birth of his child, a robust 8-pounder, until the obstetrician beckoned him into the hallway and lowered her voice.
The newborn had a serious genital deformity and could never lead a normal life, she explained.
“He is not completely male, but not female. It will bring shame on the family,” whispered the doctor, Zhang Shuxia, a trusted family friend whom they affectionately called “Auntie.” “Don’t worry,” Dong recalled Zhang telling him. “Auntie can help you.”
She advised that Dong and his mother give up the baby, euphemistically, to let him be euthanized, a fate common in China for disabled newborns.
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