The Pressure to Abort: Real or Imagined?
Abortion is a highly emotive and, sometimes, controversial topic; many people have very strong opinions about it. I think too, that your viewpoint changes once you have had your own children. Going through the miracle of birth, and I use that term non-religiously, makes you feel differently forever about your place in the human chain. The very fact that we grow from these tiny cells into great big human beings is literally amazing.
Of course, there are times in our lives when having children is not the best option. When we are very young, as adolescents, we may have the sexual maturity to conceive a child but usually not the emotional maturity to raise a child. Having babies is only the first step, nurturing them and parenting them is when the real work starts and that lasts a lifetime. It is unfair to saddle both an immature mother with a child and it is unfair on that child, himself or herself.
What about when the parents, or parent, is older and are more in a position to consider raising a child, are there still viable concerns to consider an abortion? For some, it may involve an unplanned conception with an unwanted or unsuitable partner. Fine for sex but not for a lifetime commitment of shared parenting; situations like these are all part of modern life. Timing, everything comes down to timing in the end; is it the right time in my life to have a child?
Is there a pressure to abort in certain situations? From parents with great expectations for your future; or from a career and those who you work for; or from a partner you adulterously wronged – all of these circumstances can exert real pressure on a pregnant woman. This is why counselling is available from all abortion clinics and must be recommended by your local GP before you can book into a clinic. Talking to a dispassionate professional counsellor can be a relief after the, often, highly emotional encounters with partners, family and others with vested interests in your decision.
The pressure to abort: real or imagined? I would say that it is very real in many of these situations. We live in a highly individualistic age, where gender equality is very important, and many women wish to pursue a career at the expense of having a family until the last possible minute; sometimes with disappointing outcomes. Once you do have children, family becomes very important and doing your own thing fades into the background. There are no wrongs and rights when it comes to making this decision; but it is best to be ready if you can. Having children is a blessing if you are able to subsume your own life into the service and nurture of theirs.