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A Mile In Their Shoes

Posted by on in After Abortion
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‘I could/would/will never do that’, ‘how could anyone think/do that?’.  These are just a few examples of things that people write, say, think, etc after being made aware of someone else’s ‘mistake’ (premarital sex, abortion, keeping an unplanned baby, giving a baby up for adoption, and so many others).  Frustratingly, I am not immune to it.  I have my moments where I am judging someone, sure I would do a better job, were I in that position. Come to find out, I ended up doing the same thing, and not necessarily for malicious reasons.  Ugh.  It’s not pleasant, but it reminds me to be careful how I look at/speak to/think of others.  I know quite a few people who can relate to that type of attitude.

I can give many examples, but being in the pro-life movement and all I will focus on some related to this subject.

’I would never have an abortion.’  I have heard this MANY times.  Sometimes from women who have never been pregnant.  As one who lost a sibling in this way,  naturally I would love if this was a true statement, but I have met plenty of post abortives, who have said or thought the same in the past, sadly.  But then they found themselves in an abusive relationship being forced into it, or with multiple kids and dwindling finances/small or no house, etc, or perhaps super sick with hyperemesis gravidarum (severe throwing up, which can continue through the whole pregnancy for some).  Dealing with frequent stomach troubles (minus throwing up, thankfully) I can’t imagine how horrible that would be. Some have been on necessary medication and became unexpectedly pregnant, feeling unable to keep the baby because the lack of meds could make them very ill.

Also, rape.  I know women who have been raped and it has been super traumatizing for them. Some do not feel able to keep the baby.  They fear they will think of the rapist every time they see their baby.  Or perhaps they and other mothers feel their babies will be mistreated, as a result of their conception, mixed race, etc.  The world is not always kind to those who are different.  

Another reason, tokophobia. A phobia of pregnancy and/or childbirth. I heard about this relatively recently, and my heart goes out to these women. Anxiety is a hard enough struggle, but this seems much worse in some ways.  I know at least one who felt all the cutting, etc during her c-section, despite the anesthesia.  Others could’ve had days long labors, etc.

Perhaps some of you readers have been through these situations and NOT aborted.  If so, I truly am happy for that!:)  But I ask you all to be more gentle when speaking of the abortion minded/post abortive.  Many times, it’s not such a carefree/flippant decision as some people make it seem.  Many of these women are suffering beforehand, and even more so afterwards.

I also can not stand the shaming of those pregnant before marriage.  Some of these men/women had every intention of waiting, and fell into temptation, some were using birth control.  Some were raped, and some just see nothing wrong with it.  Whatever their reasons, or our personal views on the matter, I think it is best to react peacefully.  The more we condemn them for their choices, the less likely they are to feel comfortable sharing.  Some may abort simply because they feel judged and alone.  While a big goal of mine is to save siblings from abortion, I think a bigger goal is reaching out to these parents in love.  No matter their decisions.

 

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Tiana is CEO of Women and Babies Support (WOMBS) International Ltd and a mother of five, who writes about human development, pregnancy, abortion and related issues. She tweets at @wombs_intl and welcomes discussions on these important topics which affect so many women and their babies.

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