10.06.2005

Understanding the Decision

This story talks about a typical pro-life protest.

Nicole Clement, who is 38 weeks pregnant, used a lawn chair to help her make it through the hour as she held her sign. “Pregnancy shows how beautiful the gift of life is,” she said. “As someone who has had a child and is about to have another, I cannot understand the decision to abort.” (Emphasis mine.)

This misses the mark. I suppose that people who are just out to protest abortion really don't need to understand the in-depth reasoning involved when you do outreach to pregnant women, but then again, education needs to take place across the board regarding why women have abortions as well as why it is an understandable (although wrong) decision most of the time.

It's a slight shift of words - "I cannot understand the decision to abort" needs to be changed to "I cannot agree with the decision to abort," but at the same time, it's a major shift in thought. It goes from pitting "us" against "them" to allowing "us" to reach out a helping hand to "them." Because once you begin to understand the reasons why a woman might decide to abort, you get a little closer to being able to help. Women allow you to get a little closer to them when you don't start out the conversation by saying "I don't understand you and I never will" before even finding out what her situation really is.

4 comments:

Silent Rain Drops said...

I'm happy to see you address this with thoughtful compassion. As a post-abortive woman, I recoil at these kinds of statements because they imply I am something other than a normal human being. And as you say, they pit us against each other - and you are right in thinking that it does not help us come to an understanding of each other.

I would add only one thing, and it won't make me popular: I think Christian pro-life workers in particular need to consider the Scripture: "there but for the grace of God, go I." We must look into the mirror and understand that each of us is capable of grave sin of every kind, given the right circumstances.

I go through a similar trial with my own thoughts, and it may help to describe them: sometimes it's tempting to think I am somehow more enlightened or better than the woman who has had multiple abortions, because I only went through one experience, and then learned the painful truth. But that's absurd - I was never tested to see if I would withstand another unwanted pregnancy, so how can I be so sure I would have refused? I can't. I can't be sure there is any sin that I would not yet commit in my life; so I must remain vigilant.

Thank you very much for your perspective and for the opportunity to comment.

The Pro-Woman Pro-Lifer said...

Thanks so much for your comments. I too agree that we need to have the mindset of anything being possible for any one of us. I often comment that when I work with some of the women I work with, I can't help but wonder, "What in the world would I do in that situation - especially if I lived apart from God."

'There but for the grace of God, go I' is absolutely something I believe in. So you'll fit right in here with that belief - no worries about being unpopular. Take that message to some other organizations, and I can't promise anything though.

Thanks again for commenting.

Dick Masterson said...

The reasons why a woman might decide to abort? How about because she wasn’t careful when it mattered. There’s no other reason.

Here comes the rape card.

-Dick

The Pro-Woman Pro-Lifer said...

Well "Dick," first I thought you were just ignorant on the details. Then I checked out your blog, and now I know you're just ignorant.

So anyway, thank you for gracing us with your presense and for revealing such insight "Dick."