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To wonder why one is acceptable but the other isn't? (POSSIBLE TRIGGERING, BE WARNED)

(42 Posts)
badgeradnauseum Wed 19-Feb-14 16:40:25

Not a TAAT but inspired by a thread and also by talking to others and hearing their opinions. Why is it acceptable to talk about how much you want a baby if you're struggling to conceive, but not to talk about not wanting a baby if you're pregnant and don't want to be?

It seems like a really common thing, people are hushed from saying "I don't want this baby" or "I'm considering an abortion" because "some people would do anything to get pregnant"... but if people say "I'd give anything to be pregnant", it's unacceptable to reply "Some women would give anything to not be pregnant".

FWIW I don't think saying that to someone TTC is right, but I don't think saying "Some women would do anything to get pregnant" to someone facing an unwanted/unexpected pregnancy is right either.

Just wondering what people's experiences of this are, if anyone agrees, if others know people who think like this or if I just spend time with unreasonable people. Hopefully the 'triggering' warning will avoid people being offended but if it has offended you for any reason I apologise.

StickEmUpBigStyle Wed 19-Feb-14 22:32:04

Anyone who says "some women would give anything to be pregnant" to a person experiencing unwanted pregnancy is an arsehole.

^^ this

deakymom Wed 19-Feb-14 22:25:50

not unreasonable just honest to be honest i did not plan on having children i did everything except celibacy to ensure that and i still got pregnant i don't believe abortion is a viable option this was a surprise baby and unexpected but i could not bring myself to have an abortion i thought about it for a couple of minutes and decided it was not for me (makes me shudder to be honest) i dont regret my children (ive had three now) i possibly would never have had them but for my first accident but i agree people are disgusted by you if you tell them you never wanted the child in the first place the feel as if a woman's job is to be a parent its uninspiring to be told this is all you are and all you will achieve is a baby and a low paid job you fit in around the kids

badgeradnauseum Wed 19-Feb-14 18:45:56

Abortion isn't an easy peasy snap solution for everyone hmm for me, I spent six weeks after finding out I was pregnant, tearing myself apart over whether to have an abortion. Even now I wonder whether I made the right choice. Why does the same sensitivity not extend to women having unwanted pregnancies - their situation has no bearing whatsoever on yours.

The point is, the situation isn't cut-and-dried on either side, but a lot of people seem to assume unwanted pregnancy? Oh you can just have an abortion. For some people, the decision is 'easy'. For others it's hugely difficult, and saying "But there are women out there who are desperate to have a baby" is just as insensitive, IMHO, as those who go out of their way to offload on friends who are TTC about their own unwanted pregnancy.

leezl Wed 19-Feb-14 18:33:22

Both are insensitive and I hate when people use the "there are people out there desperate to have kids" (sure I've heard Jeremy Kyle say that on more than one occasion, actually, which probably heightens my distaste for it) line. I'm TTC atm but I've also had a termination in the past, and the two situations have no correlation for me. I don't think to myself now that I'm TTC that I was selfish or a bad person for having an abortion. The existence of abortion does not have any bearing on the ability of other women being able to conceive, so I don't think there's any need to be upset by the fact that for some women, abortion is the right choice. Of course there's a need for sensitivity in both scenarios, but in my opinion YANBU.

sebsmummy1 Wed 19-Feb-14 18:19:57

I wonder if it's because one involves an action and the other doesn't. Ie the woman who is struggling to conceive is powerless to influence her current position whereas the 'with child but unhappy' lady has the power to abort her foetus.

Personally I just have a problem with the tone of some of these threads and that's why I've commented on them. I think a degree of sensitivity when talking about an unwanted pregnancy would be the decent thing to do. If you chose to act like it's a bloody inconvenience then it's not unreasonable to expect some posters on a Parenting board to get a little angsty.

Meerka Wed 19-Feb-14 18:12:14

I have, shalli (not that I was the one in the situation). But the person who was, was devasted as contraception had failed and she could not see any way forward that was okay, either continuining the preg or terminatin.

It ranked along with the fuckwits who said "oh don't be sad your mother died, she's in heaven in a better place and god must have needed her more than you", which was said to me when my adoptive mother died when I was 10.

As a note, our first son was born after no less than 2 forms of contraception failed - on top of being told it might be very hard for me to conceive (we were nothing if not cautious, becuase it really wasnt a good idea to get preg literally 14 days after moving in together, which involved me moving to another country). We were probably stupid for continuining the preg. Fortunately we really wanted him, but quite a few people would have quite reasonably and responsibly gone for a termination and planned pregnancy later.

QueenStromba Wed 19-Feb-14 18:08:58

I agree with Home that you sound terribly smug Katie. I've never had an unwanted pregnancy and, despite using contraception, I know that is because I have been lucky not to be one of the ~5% of sexually active women who've become pregnant due to contraceptive failure.

HomeIsWhereTheGinIs Wed 19-Feb-14 18:07:36

Purple but I'm sure you wouldn't tell a friend who had an unwanted pregnancy that she should want the baby because you would love to be in her position?

evertonmint Wed 19-Feb-14 18:03:26

Shallishanti - I wonder that too. Would the people who say these things to strangers on the Internet say it face to face to their best friend in the same situation? I doubt it, in which case don't effing say it on screen either. If they would say it, then they're utterly heartless.

purplemurple1 Wed 19-Feb-14 17:58:44

When I had an unplanned preg I just got a quick abortion within the week. I didn't need people to be sofly softly with me as it was my own fault I'd got pg and I could easily deal with it.

Later when I had difficulty ttc it took 2yrs of trying and treatment to get ds I did need people to be sofly sofly with me as I was in a situation I had no control over and that had no end in sight.

Shallishanti Wed 19-Feb-14 17:34:18

OP, you say you've read that response on here (how dare you consider abortion when there are women who would love to be pg)
...but has anyone heard it in RL? I just wonder maybe people feel free-er to be mean and judgemental when it's just a screen in front of them not a real person?

LRDtheFeministDragon Wed 19-Feb-14 17:32:40

I think sal is right.

I also wish we could be more open about abortion and unwanted pregnancies. I think the 'oh, you will love it when it comes' response is often really well-meant and might be true for some people, but it's also quite cruel, because I reckon a lot of people in that situation know perfectly well they'd love it, but also know there are other issues.

Tailtwister Wed 19-Feb-14 17:27:17

It's strange because prior to having children (even whilst dealing with infertility for 8 years), I had no emotional response to abortion at all. How I've had children, I find the idea much harder to process although I still do understand and support women who want/need an abortion.

HomeIsWhereTheGinIs Wed 19-Feb-14 17:26:54

badger You're right. It's just plain mean to respond to someone's request for help with a "How dare you, loads of women would love to be in your shoes!".

As you say, one woman's situation has no impact on any others.

whossauhnafuffafwayay Wed 19-Feb-14 17:24:16

Nonetheless, it is the language I chose without the intention or indeed the possibility of "inducing" other people to feel or do anything.

I don't really want to get into an ethical discussion on abortion, it is what it is, it is just not a thing of the same nature as hopefully trying to bring about the birth of a person to love.

badgeradnauseum Wed 19-Feb-14 17:21:46

I am aware that they're completely different situations and can't be compared in terms of whether there's 'cure' for one and not the other, it's the attitudes towards it (from my own experience) that confuse me. And I don't just mean IRL, I've seen it on here too - people posting about an unwanted pregnancy, "But some women would do anything to have a baby". But surely those women's situation is entirely different to this woman's situation, and whether those women want a baby or not is completely irrelevant to whether this woman wants/is ready for/can support a baby - so why do people think it's acceptable to go ahead and say it, when they wouldn't say the opposite?

HomeIsWhereTheGinIs Wed 19-Feb-14 17:16:32

Again, I think people are veering away from the point that the OP is making, namely that surely the different circumstances aren't what matters, what matters is that people are told not to be unhappy with their circumstances because other people would love to be in that situation.

Kungfu I agree. It's apples and chairs and both are really hard situations.

JanineStHubbins Wed 19-Feb-14 17:15:38

Destroying a baby - emotive, unhelpful, guilt-inducing language.

For lots of women, having an abortion is not particularly traumatic.

SeaSickSal Wed 19-Feb-14 17:14:22

First of all I think you are wrong.

Infertile women who discuss how much they want a baby would be looked upon as weird obsessed baby snatchers if they talked about it too much. Hell, quite frequently you are when you don't even talk about it that often.

Normally just like abortion it is only something you discuss with people you know well.

Secondly abortion is available and you can just go and do it with the minimum emotional trauma. It is a short term condition once you decide you want an abortion and will be over very quickly and abortion is almost 100% reliable.

If you are infertile there is no 100% cure. It goes on for years and becomes the centre of your life and a massive trauma.

whossauhnafuffafwayay Wed 19-Feb-14 17:14:12

Destroying a baby is a sad and traumatic thing that should not be done lightly.

Trying to conceive a baby is a wonderful and life-giving thing that should not be done lightly.

Just because both are serious, it does not make them the same, or different sides of the same coin.

KungFuBustle Wed 19-Feb-14 17:14:08

I'm 2 years (plus some) into TTC.
I just hope if any of my friends needed my support in dealing with an unwanted pregancy I would be able to do as others have said, put my own problems aside and be compassionate of my friend's problem.

It's not even apples and oranges, it's apples and chairs. Two very different issues, both hard to deal with.

HomeIsWhereTheGinIs Wed 19-Feb-14 17:13:56

Katie I think that the point you're missing is that you don't have to choose to feel more sorry for the women who long for a child. It's not like there's a finite amount of compassion in the world. The whole point the OP is making is that it seems unfair that a whole group of people (those less lucky than you, clearly) are stigmatised.

Would you really think it preferable that someone that doesn't really want a baby has it, resents it and never really loves it?

HavantGuard Wed 19-Feb-14 17:13:28

You come across as very smug and judgemental Katie. I'm glad life has worked out so perfectly for you.

WooWooOwl Wed 19-Feb-14 17:07:45


I think if we are going to have legal abortion then we should make the best of it, and that includes people being able to talk freely about it without any stigma.

KatieBurningham Wed 19-Feb-14 17:07:16

Obviously there are extreme situations, where it's not straightforward, but so many people I know are feeling sorry for theirselves because they've fallen pregnant and it's with the wrong man, or they can't be a mum right now because of this amazing job opportunity, or they have a holiday of a lifetime planned. It's irresponsible as far as I'm concerned to get in that situation. If that man isn't the right man, prevent it. If that job is that important prevent it. Etc. I wanted to be married before I had children. I've been with my now DH for 8 years, no accidents, no oh shit moments, or phew moments, we got married, when we were ready tried and luckily am pregnant. Every situation is different but I feel a lot more sorry and sad for those women who long for a child and can't, and can't do anything about it, instead of people who make mistakes. apologies to anyone who feels that my opinion is wrong but it is only that, my opinion.

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