I had an unwanted pregnancy.
“The mother at birth was an attractive 19-year-old girl, 5 feet 3 inches tall, weighing 103 pounds, green eyes, brown hair with red high lights, light complexion and was of German, English and Scottish descent. She described herself as light, serene, with a low temperament and sometimes considered herself capricious, and if she was angry that it didn’t happen often, she seemed to think it was going pretty fast. The social worker described his mother as a quiet, serene person who, of course, did not allow himself to get involved in talking about himself or his situation.
These are some notes from the maternity hospital where my native mother spent most of her pregnancy not being able to return to school and unwanted returning to her family’s home.
It was 1973. At the beginning of the second trimester my mother, who was a native, passed Rowe v. Wade, which made abortion a legitimate choice for her. My existence literally hung in the balance of Rowe vs. Wade. Although I will never know what guided her decisions, my mother-in-law eventually decided to bring the pregnancy to term and sent me for adoption.
I don’t know how her story went, but I know how mine was. I was lucky, at best: I was adopted into a large family. I enjoyed a life full of love. All my needs were met as well as many of my desires and my life was full of opportunities.
It is clear that someone in my situation – the one whose existence was a matter of choice – would be a supporter of life.
This is not the case.
I am grateful that my native mother chose the way she did, but I am also grateful that the choice was her own. Not only did she have legitimate freedom of choice, she was also lucky that she was able to bear me. Pregnancy itself can put a woman in medical, social and economic ruin. In some cases, abortion is really the best option. Only a pregnant woman can make that decision.
It is impossible to imagine how I would have felt if the story of my life had been different, and my mother-in-law referred to the term not as a choice, but because she was forced to do so by the authorities. I like to know that the decision was made for her not according to the law or circumstances. Deciding to take me to term, she took advantage of her freedom.
Abortions have always been and will be. Study after study shows that most Americans believe that a woman should have a choice. However, a woman’s legal right to reproductive autonomy has degraded in the decades since I was born as the religious view of conception has infiltrated our national discourse. Those who want to ban abortions often say that life begins from conception. They view abortion as murder. And yet, the vast majority of them also believe that there are exceptions when abortion should be allowed, such as rape, incest or risk to the mother’s life. They believe that circumstances matter. They believe there is a gray area. In other words, they believe that a choice must be made.
Of the minority of people who want to ban abortion, only a much smaller number believe that there are no exceptional cases in which abortion can be justified. This is a small minority committed to a doctrine that few Americans believe in, and which, both religious beliefs and minority opinions, should not be the basis for laws in our country.
If the Supreme Court overturns Rowe v. Wade, the previously established right will be overturned. What for 48 years was a deeply personal decision that fell within the scope of a pregnant woman and those she consulted will now be decided by a cohort of legislators who are not interested in her personal circumstances and are not interested in the outcome. for mother or child.
It comes down to this: who should make the choice? Without Rowe v. Wade it will no longer be a matter of adhering to a separate moral or ethical code, it will no longer be a matter of the actual circumstances of each pregnancy. This will be left to the whims of politics, the arbitrariness of the bureaucracy, the dogmas of the minority and the coincidences of the social and economic class. If we want to consider ourselves a fair and ethical society, we must support Rowe v. Wade.