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Where are all these supposed unsupportive pro-lifers?

post #1 of 118
Thread Starter 
I keep hearing people refer to pro-lifers that say a mom shouldn't have an abortion, but then don't support helping her out after she has the baby. I ask, who are they? All the pro-lifers I've ever met are totally supportive of moms who choose to keep their babies. Our family and others we know have:

* Taken in pregnant moms who didn't have somewhere to stay
* Donated money to crisis pregnancy centers
* Donated diapers, wipes, baby clothes, breastfeeding books
* Driven pregnant moms to prenatal appointments
* Bought food for moms who needed help
* Driven moms with babies to pediatrician appointments
* Rented a breast pump for a mom with a 30-week preemie
* Adopted babies
* Been foster parents
* Work at WIC as a Breastfeeding Counselor

So that's us and the pro-lifers that we know personally. In addition, there are pro-life groups that help with:

* housing assistance (they paid my friend's rent once)
* parenting classes
* maternity clothes
* baby supplies (siapers, wipes, clothes, cribs, high chairs, car seats)
* education assistance, helping moms finish high school or college

And what are they pro-choice people doing to help pregnant moms and children? They're proving birth control and abortions. I would have to say the ones I see doing more to help are the pro-life people. At least among those I know.
post #2 of 118
Phathui5--



Cool Breezes,
Jenne
post #3 of 118
phathui5: pro-choice women do all those same things to help out pregnant women who are keeping the pregnancy.

I've done many of them. And, maybe, I'll be adopting, too.

The only difference is, if a woman make the decision to use birth control, I don't judge her bady for it. Quite the opposite. I think she is being responsible for taking steps to prevent an unwanted pregnancy and, therefore, the need for an abortion.

And, if she has to make the decision to have an abortion, I accept that, too. And I still don't judge her badly for it. And I don't coerce her either way.

It is her body, her decision. Not mine.
post #4 of 118
Phath,

We have PLENTY here right now....In NY. A quick run down (because I;m in a rush....if you'd like, i can fill in more later)

1. Promise baby clothes to a poor mother who is considering abortion, then tell the mom they don't have any more (has happened more often then not that they have no means to support their promises).

2. Refused my offer to give FREE childbirth classes to the women they "saved", because these women are no longer their main priority (I'm assuming because they have to "counsel" more women, as they have an agenda to fulfill)

3. Offered help with discussing options of going through with pregnancy (i.e. adoption, foster care, parents raise it, keeping it, etc), when all they frequently do is push for foster care or adoption if the mom is poor and/or a teen, despite the woman's interest in raising her baby.

4. No follow up call to a mother after the birth of her saved child. BUT I've had these same organizations call a woman who aborted on her due date to remind her that her baby would have been born today had she not "killed it". Talk about harsh and disgusting. This I feel is one of the worst.

5. I've met only one anti-choice activist who adopted a "special needs" saved baby. The special need? The kid was half Mexican. Perfect health.

6. They are available 24 hours a day for crisis "phone counseling" and even in-person counseling, BUT, if a woman needs the maternity clothes she was promised, she must make an appointment within a very narrow time slot (i.e. between 2-4pm on mondays, or on the 2nd wednesday of the month).

I've heard similar stories from women accross the nation that I have spoken to both IRL, on MDC and other internet sources.

I have to leave, but best wishes, and please let me know if you'd like more info, I have plenty. And please note that I am not saying that all are like this, but ALL that I have come into contact with are.

best Wishes, Kelly
post #5 of 118
Many of the people who are anti-choice are also anti- welfare, and other gov't programs to help the families that these babies are born into, and to help the babies themselves. While it is wonderful that you do those things for mothers who choose to keep their baby, that doesnt negate the lack of societal support for struggling families.
post #6 of 118
phathui5 good for you!
post #7 of 118
Quote:
Originally Posted by CookieMonsterMommy
...Offered help with discussing options of going through with pregnancy (i.e. adoption, foster care, parents raise it, keeping it, etc), when all they frequently do is push for foster care or adoption if the mom is poor and/or a teen, despite the woman's interest in raising her baby...
Yes! I get so tired of this line, "She shouldn't have an abortion, she should up the baby up for adoption." Okay, so not only should this women be deprived of the right to legal abortion, she should then be deprived of the baby she is being forced to carry to term? And, yes, the anti-choice activists I know are overwhelmingly against expanding programs like welfare that would help poor and/or teenage mothers keep their babies with them.

When I workd at a battered women's shelter, we would get women with newborn children who had been kicked out of the town's "crisis pregnancy center", despite having a violent boyfriend or husband to deal with. Once the crisis center had determined that these women were not going to abort nor were they going to be "good girls" and give in to the pressure to relinquish their children, they were out of luck.


Quote:
Originally Posted by CookieMonsterMommy
...I've met only one anti-choice activist who adopted a "special needs" saved baby. The special need? The kid was half Mexican. Perfect health. ...
I'm so tired of this too. My completely anti-choice BIL and SIL are so proud of themselves for considering adoption...from China. A healthy, baby girl from China.
post #8 of 118
Quote:
Originally Posted by phathui5
...And what are they pro-choice people doing to help pregnant moms and children? They're proving birth control and abortions...
Pro-choice means exactly that, it means supporting women in whatever choice they make, be that abortion, adoption or keeping the baby. I have done, or know other pro-choice advocates, who have done everything on that list plus actively support women's right to not have to continue a pregnancy in the first place.

Pro-choice means supporting all women, not only the ones who agree with your personal agenda.
post #9 of 118
My best friend's 16yo sister got pg by a total jerk. Her initial desire was to have an abortion, but her very catholic family coerced her not to. She got enough "help" to survive from the local anti-choice "crisis pregnancy center" right up until the baby was born. At that point they dropped her like she had the plague. She had planned on placing the baby for adoption, but the child had numerous birth defects and she couldn't find a family.

This girls's story is a very long and painful saga, but suffice it to say it involved rape, drug abuse and eventual suicide. My friend ended up raising the child after her sister's death. The toll it has taken on my friend's marriage and her children is enormous.
post #10 of 118
Thread Starter 
Quote:
pro-choice women do all those same things to help out pregnant women who are keeping the pregnancy
Pro-choice women may, but pro-choice groups do not. I checked NOW's site and the last time they were involved with an issue in the Family section of their site was like a year ago. They are the National Organization for Women, but they seem to focus on abortion an awful lot. Abortion isn't women's biggest need.

I did a home visit with a mom from WIC today whose "pro-choice" friends all pressured her to have an abortion as soon as they found out she was pregnant. None of them offered her any practical help. They told her that since she wasn't having an abortion, then she got what she deserved. So she's taking care of her newborn twins with hardly any help. The only help she's getting is from her (pro-life) church, medical assistance, and WIC. Where are the helpful pro-choice women there? The way they saw it, if she didn't want an abortion, she wasn't making the right decision and they weren't going to help her.
post #11 of 118
It seems as though you are upset about pro-choice people making generalizations about the anti-choice community, yet you are doing it as well. I do not see how this conversation is helpful
post #12 of 118
Quote:
I keep hearing people refer to pro-lifers that say a mom shouldn't have an abortion, but then don't support helping her out after she has the baby. I ask, who are they?
my dad and all of his friends, to start with. just about all of the republicans around here that i've met. obviously i'm not going to name names because this is a public forum... but it's a lot of people. generally their belief system goes like this: no women should have abortions and then... those lazy stupid welfare mothers need to get off their ass and get a job; they're just sucking up taxpayer dollars.

my own dad has referred to Them as "welfare families, just like you." : (this was even AFTER we got off of welfare, which i clarified to him, but it didn't make any difference.) and no, he doesn't believe in abortion. he doesn't believe in premarital sex. he believes women should be subserviant to men. he doesn't believe that taxpayer dollars should go to poor families for aid. he believes in helping the elderly, driving cancer patients to their appointments.... but he refused to give aid to the family of a dying girl who is my age and has a daughter ~ because she had a daughter out of wedlock and is in a committed, but unmarried, relationship to the father. when i was 17 and pregnant and my mom was about to kick me out, he offered that i could stay with him ~ if i stopped being in a relationship to the father of the baby, who was at the time working full time to provide for our new family. uh, thanks dad, but no. (my SO and i have been together for well over 5 years now and he's still my best friend.)

the other pro-life people i know will generally give aid to families who need it only if the families are willing to begin participating in their church and religion. forcing people into a religion to get aid ~ yeah that helps.
post #13 of 118
I don't think naming people we know personally who do this or that in whatever situation is going to add any useful information as to whether pro-choice or pro-life people are supportive of mothers in tough situations.

Obviously, anyone who looks hard enough is going to find tons of examples of both pro-choice people and pro-life people helping new mothers who need help.

The biggest issue I see here has already been mentioned, and that is one of policies of organizations and governments. The same goverment that is vocally anti-abortion is also the same government that slashed medicaid funding, forced mothers of infants and toddlers into work a-la "welfare reform," and cut education spending, mental health services, and child care subsidies. Oh, and then, made an appeal to the American public to do more volunteer work and talked a lot about how charity should be privatized at the public's discretion. Fact is, the public isn't picking up the slack on a national level.

I think it's awesome that there are private organizations that are trying to compensate for the lack of official and government support for at-risk mothers, but short of supporting a woman through parenting classes, rent money, etc. for years and years, I'm not impressed with the overall effect.

I don't agree with Pathius's point, which is that pro-life people do a lot to help out mothers (and the examples she gave were of very compassionate acts, albeit acts that help out the pregnant mother and new mother only); and that pro-choice people don't help out mothers, but only provide birth control and abortions. The entire reasoning behind this POV is flawed.
post #14 of 118
Quote:
Originally Posted by phathui5
Pro-choice women may, but pro-choice groups do not. I checked NOW's site and the last time they were involved with an issue in the Family section of their site was like a year ago. They are the National Organization for Women, but they seem to focus on abortion an awful lot. Abortion isn't women's biggest need. ...
No one is trying to make staying pregnant, giving birth and raising a child illegal. However, there are entire groups and lots of money being spent on trying to make legal, safe abortion illegal.

Do you really not see the difference and why the focus is where it is?
post #15 of 118
I was never pregnant as a teen but there were several times I thought I was and I went to CPC's because they would provide a free test.

They leaned heavily toward adoption/foster care for unmarried pregnant teens. They also encouraged marriage. Sorry, but I think getting married as a teen is more harmful than being a single parent. (Not to say it can't work, but most of the time, I don't hear good stuff about it.) They even gave me a booklet that said people who co-habitate are likely to experience domestic abuse, but that the risk level drops if they get married! (No, actually it gets worse.)

The same center I went to also denied services to a 13-year-old girl who had a baby because she would not press charges against the baby's 25-year-old "father." So this little girl (who was homeless, BTW) gets knocked up by a pedophile who won't support the baby, and these religious organizations decide to punish the BABY for the sick man's behavior?! Aren't the needs of a child more important than getting a mother to do what you think she should do?

Oh, and they also did not tell me anything about how to get welfare, food stamps, medical help or child support if I happened to be pg. Instead, they told me these "inspiring" stories of women "like myself" who "got themselves into this kind of situation" (yeah, without the help of men, I suppose?) and "pulled themselves up by their bootstraps and got a job." Yep, we sinful wanton women got ourselves into quite a pickle and now we should get ourselves out.

So, I think it's great there are women who go to great lengths to help struggling pregnant women and new moms. I think it's irrelevant whether they are pro-choice or not; as long as they help women it shouldn't matter. But I think a lot of people who are helpful in one way are harmful in another. For example, you can donate all the maternity clothes you want, but if you have this attitude that women who "get themselves pregnant" deserve what they get, it's going to show.
post #16 of 118
post #17 of 118
This is such a sad thread. Everyone thinks that the other guy isn't doing enough, and that is pretty much always true. But it also implies that you think you ARE doing enough and I don't think that can ever be true. Yes, those are sweeping generalizations and there are no easy answers.

With all the thousands of homeless families, unwanted children, rampant over population of the world... I don't like the idea of abortion, but I cannot support the idea of making it illegal. I think we have failed as a nation on this issue and while I applaud anyone who tries to lessen the burden I don't think ANYONE should be pointing fingers or playing the "we (as a group) do more than you (as a group)" game.

I don't know how to make it better... and I am really saddened by this thread.
post #18 of 118
ITA gingerlane.
post #19 of 118
I think there is probably a good many pro-choice and anti-abortion individuals who help out preg, women in need. I do not in anyway think that helping pregnant women is unique to anti-abortion groups or individuals.
Also I believe many want to know how these anti-abortion groups are helping women in the long run. Providing a pregnant woman with maternity cloths, temp place to stay, diapers etc.. is really nice but how about 5 years down the road?
Anit-abortion org has a purpose of stopping abortion and they claim to help pregnant women in need to continue their pregnancy so they really do have the burden of prove on them (as in what to they do for all these women and children in LONG run). These orgs should live up to
what they sell.
As far as I know most pro-choice orgs don't claim to finacially support/give a place to live or donate baby items to women who decide to carry a pregnancy to term. I am sure many give women information to where they can be helped in these ways but that isn't the purpose of the orgs.
*NARAL Pro-Choice America works to reduce the need for abortions. Americans need better access to contraception, health care and sex education.
*http://www.ippf.org/about/mission.htm
*MISSION
To achieve reproductive freedom for women, the Feminist Women's Health Center provides woman-centered healthcare and education, and we advocate all options for all women. Our health services and education expand women's choices and empower women's decisions.
http://www.fwhc.org/welcome.htm
post #20 of 118
Hey all I'm back...some very good points on how those who are anti-choice are also anti-welfare AND anti sex ed (which is an issue I have BIG problems dealing with--makes no type of sense!). Basically-don't teach them to have safe(r) sex, don't let them have an abortion when they get pregnant, and restrict their access to healthcare, food and housing assistance.

The suffolk county perinatal coalition (SCPC-don't know if they have a website, but I'm sure they do-google it pr PM me if interested) in Suffolk County NY is a pro choice, private and government funded organization (non-profit) that offers MANY services to women who either chose to abort or (moreso) chose to continue with the pregnancy...what they offer:
Counseling...Baby and Childrens Clothes/Supplies (they have a whole room of diff sizes and only accept the nice stuff), Smoking Ceasation Programs, Transportation to and from Dr's Appts/WIC/DSS/etc, Referrals, Job and Training Referals, Parenting Classes, Case-Workers, and probably the two biggest ones (both of which I'm proud to say I am a part of) FREE doula services (both labor support and post partum), and a free mentor program (where a trained volunteer visits the woman at least once a week for emotional support, help, problem solving, etc) that continues as long as the woman feels she needs these services.

Phath, I really do appreciate what you do for these women, but this is not the norm....What does NOW do? How about advocating for equal rights for women (including pay and jobs? So they can support the kids they birthed), helping stop domestic violence and rape...so no, I don't think they have been directly involved in a program titled "Helping women who specifically considered and avoided abortion" or anything like that, but look at the big picture here. NOW is helping ALL women by the work that they do-they do not hone in on one specific group that may or may not have wanted an abortion.

EF mom's description is VERY typical of what I have heard (altho many times, the "support" stops once the abortion may not been done both legally and electively and it is clear to them that the woman will not abort). Please keep in mind that these centers are funded by people looking to stop abortion, not those wanting to help the new moms....please do not tell me that I am wrong, I come from a VERY anti-choice family, and NONE of the fundraising literature mentions one word about follow-up or after-birth support. None. (And my parents get newsletters from at least 3 or 4 such organizations incl birthright and the Coalition for Life). They mention stopping the "Silent Holocaust" and putting a stop to "Senseless murders of millions of God's precious babies" throughout the literature and newsletter however.

And many anti-choice agencies are religious in nature, and I can personally attest to the women being forced to participate in religious programs to get the services (One 15 year old JEWISH girl was promised a car seat, so she went there...turns out, she'd get the car seat once she had 100 points....you only get points by attending Mass and/or doing Bible study and attending Christian youth group...and this was after she told them she was a practicing Jew....it didn't matter-rules are rules....).

I'm sorry that things are this way. In a perfect world, we wouldn't be having this thread because there would be no need for abortions because everyone would be educated in safe sex AND abstinence, there'd be no peer pressure, no rape, no incest, and pple who were engaging in sexual intercourse would be taking vitamins and be healthy, there would be no poverty, and women would be equal to men. Not gonna happen....Sorry. And it really does make me sad.

Best Wishes All,
Kelly
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