Friday, May 6, 2011

Thinking Gone Askew

Many people assume, and anti-abortion groups insist, that giving up a baby for adoption is not only an easy choice, but a righteous alternative to abortion. It's not. First of all, it's unusual: less than 1% of women confronting unintended pregnancy today choose adoption. And for the birth mother adoption is difficult, often much more emotionally painful than abortion, according to many studies. With abortion, a woman almost always puts the decision behind her, and moves on; with adoption that can be considerably more challenging.
Cristina Page - Should Adoption be a Reproductive Right?

I am always surprised by how people on the pro-choice side of the abortion issue see everything reversed. The fact that only 1% of women consider adoption these days is, not because adoption is the least preferable choice to abortion, but because abortion has been offered so easily that it is chosen first.

Abortion is the choice that lets everyone else off the hook, while the woman who gets the abortion has to deal with it all, usually alone. Where are those abortion-advisors when she wakes in the night from a nightmare, or when she feels suicidal? They are gone, because she has been left to "deal with it" so that they, not her, can get on with their lives.

When I got involved with pro-life advocacy, I was surprised by the number of people working alongside of me who were adopted themselves. This told me something significant, that they were grateful for the lives they got and were involved in this in order to try and ensure that for others not so fortunate. Often, while holding prayer vigils outside the abortion center, passersby will turn and say "I was adopted" and give us the thumbs-up. Now, why do you suppose they do that? Gosh, I would say they are grateful for their lives.

There are other areas in which pro-choice groups can lend political power on behalf birth mothers. For example, "Safe Haven" laws, now in effect in 49 states, have been tremendously harmful to birth mothers. Safe Haven laws were intended to prevent situations where birth mothers, at the moment of giving birth, feel so desperate without the financial, physical or emotional means to parent a child, that they inflict harm or cause death to their newborn baby. In practice, however, the law serves to deny women, the vast majority of whom would never consider harming the infant, important information about their options. Instead, women who have not yet given birth to a child and/or who have safely given birth to a child within a hospital setting and have indicated that they do not wish to parent their child are inappropriately encouraged to relinquish their baby to "safe haven" in lieu of being offered options counseling so that they may formulate a plan for their baby. This practice has the unintentional and unacceptable consequence of undermining a birth mother when she is at her most vulnerable by depriving her of information about her options, such as open adoption, and the right to reconsider relinquishing her child should she soon after regret her decision to do so. Alterations to these laws are necessary to address these violations.

Once again, the author has missed the point. "Safe havens" exist precisely because the woman is at her most vulnerable; by allowing her to give up her baby, no questions asked, they provide an alternative to killing. Yes, let's call it what it is. Most women can live better with having abandoned a baby to someone who will ensure that it is cared for, than they can live with the fact that they had their own child killed. Do these pro-choice advocates ever really think about the fact that the post-abortive woman carries, in her person, the scene of a murder for the rest of her life?

Once again, they retreat into the statements that these unborn human beings aren't really persons. They have to, because recognizing them as persons would mean that we have to give them the same rights we accord ourselves.

It is just so surprising how upside-down their thinking is from what is normal and sane, what is humane and right.

h/t Huffington Post

1 comment:

Roseberry said...

Adoption has declined as a choice for other reasons as well. Not only has the process been bureaucratized signficantly, but potential adoptive families have often found themselves insulted and humiliated by those agencies that oversee adoptions.

More significantly, everywhere that governments have reneged on their promises to keep secret the identities and whereabouts of birth parents the interest in putting children up for adoption and the interest from potential adoptive parents has declined dramatically.