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Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Updates -- Abortion debates first, then risk factors

I'm sorry I haven't posted in a while. I meant to do so earlier and need to do my seven things post from Jenn that I haven't had a chance to do so. I will try to get to that later this week.

I've spent the last three days debating abortion on babycenter. The murder of Dr. Tiller has caused a huge swell of posts about abortion, and I can't help but chime in, especially when it comes to late term abortions, since many (if not most) of them are done to due poor prenatal diagnosis.

His murder brings back so many memories of last year when I felt like I have no where to turn. I can't help but think that some women might not have any place to go now that he's gone and will be in the same situation I was in. It was hell for me, and I wouldn't want anyone else to go through it.

I was told by one poster that anyone who terminates a pregnancy due to a poor prenatal diagnosis is a murder of a the worst kind. I shared my story with her, why I feel the way I do, and asked some rather pointed questions. She later apologized and said my story made her think. She now thinks she might be wrong about terminations for poor prenatal diagnosis.

Her changing her mind is one of the chief reasons I am speaking out against it. If I could make someone see that those who want to spare their child a life of pain aren't monsters or evil or want all people who receive a poor prenatal diagnosis to terminate, I will have done something good. When I speak out for a woman to have the right to choose, I am speaking out about the right to choose to terminate but also about the right not to terminate.

I'm not sure if anyone who decided to carry to term for a poor prenatal diagnosis reads my blog, but I just wanted to say I respect your decision to do so and will fight just as strongly for your right to do so as I am for the right not to carry to term and terminate. I've been on both sides of this equation.

I am definitely going back to school next year to finish my degree in psychology and then get my masters, so I can be a therapist. I've decided I would like to counsel women who have received a poor prenatal diagnosis or lost a baby. Since I've made the decision to terminate, came about as close as you can get to terminating without actually doing so, and then having to attempt to carry to term, I think I would probably be able to offer those women advice and help from all aspects. I've given it a lot of thought, and women who receive a poor diagnosis or have lost a baby are near and dear to my heart. I want to help them, and I think becoming a therapist would be the best way.

Anyway, on to some good things. I had my appointment with my regular ob/gyn yesterday. She read my report and said the ultrasound looked great. My risk factors are 1 in 99,000 for Trisomy 18 and 13 and 1 in 17,000 for Down Syndrome. She said if it was her, she wouldn't have the AFP test or the amnio. She wants me to have the 20-week ultrasound and decide from there, so that's what I'm going to do.


Mirna said...

What you're saying makes sense. I think you will be a wonderful Therapist too. Yay to those super risk factor figures! Take care and try not to work so hard. :)

Brendan and Brenna's Mom said...

If it means anything you've changed my mind. I always said that if I had a baby with a poor diagnosis I would carry him/her to term. I think twice about that now. I think it is something I would really struggle with if I knew that my baby was in or was going to be in pain. How could I bring a child into this world knowing all he/she will know is suffering? It seems so very selfish to me. Of course we never know what we will do until we are in that situation, but you have told you story so well that I feel as if I have been there.

While I do support women who induce early due to health reasons- I have a very hard time with elective late term abortions for no reason. I have a friend who had an abortion in her seventh month of pregnancy just because she decided she didn't want "it" anymore. This was when we were in high school, but it has always stuck with me. I know that, given the chance, that baby could have lived. I really have a hard time with that. (I should also say she did too. I will spare the details, but it was a very horrible experience and to my knowledge she never had any other children because of that.)

I don't know what the answer is.

Meg said...

Congratulations on such a healthy appointment!

Violet said...

I would like to ask your thoughts on something. My friend and I were talking about both prenatal testing for fetal abnormalities as well as termination for poor prenatal diagnosis. The focus of our conversation was on prenatal diagnosing. I have no qualms against it, and personally believe I would take any non invasive testings such as blood work and ultrasounds. She declines even blood work. One thing she said she is concerned about as medical science and prenatal testing advances is that some medical insurance companies some day use these tests as a reason to decline prenatal care aside from termination. That some day, insurances will require women get the tests, and if given poor prenatal diagnosis, will refuse care for both the baby and the mother, unless she follows their chosen protocol, which may be termination.

I know you support women's choice to terminate OR NOT. But what if, by changing some laws, we inadvertently give persons like insurance companies the ability to take away the choice by there willingness to pay for medical care when the woman makes her choice?

Anonymous said...

Yay for super positive results!