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Would like a discussion on abortion hopefully without it descending into a fight

(218 Posts)
DogAgain Sat 12-Sep-09 21:18:16

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MsHighwater Sat 12-Sep-09 21:20:57

I don't think I could ever have had an abortion - I chose not to have any screening tests despite my age being a risk factor - because I knew that termination was not an option and saw no other point in putting myself through it - but I stop short of wanting it to be unavailable to anyone. I know it's a bit of a cop out but I can't help that.

DogAgain Sat 12-Sep-09 21:23:32

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MrsShrekTheThird Sat 12-Sep-09 21:25:39

what makes you want to debete this tonight - just wondering...

FWIW I am not "anti" but could never do it - had too many m/c's and although not all the pregnancies were planned I would never want to end one intentionally. Having lost so many I realise more than most how the odds can be stacked against you.

I do think that the option should be there though - but I do agree that the late version appears barbaric unless there are desperate circumstances - also well aware that there are many of those desperate situations of which I speak that crop up on these boards, where you can only have sincere sadness for those involved.

CrackWhoretoPaulDacre Sat 12-Sep-09 21:26:49

Personally I'm very glad I've never had to make the choice, although have taken the MAP a couple of times.

If DS had had the Edwards Syndrome his triple-test predicted, I would have terminated. And termination would then have been at about 20 weeks, given the delays for confirmation. I cried pretty constantly between getting the result and getting the reassurance, because I knew I couldn't put a baby through the pain and misery.

I don't think you can judge a woman having a late termination. Whatever you're going through must be pretty extreme if you can terminate after you've started to feel the baby and show it, surely?

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

2shoes Sat 12-Sep-09 21:27:44

I am lucky never to have been in the position to have an abortion.
I don't aggree with late abortions(up to term) for disability.
This will not stay pretty

LuluMaman Sat 12-Sep-09 21:30:41

thikn something like 1% of abortions would be classed as late abortions.. vast majority are in the first trimester

i firmly believe that women who termiante late on do so for cxomplex emotional reasons, are perhaps young women in denial of being pregnant,women in abusive relationships,those who've decided to terminate bsed on amnio results

i doubt very much if these later abortions are just because the woman did not get roudn to it sooner

i firmly believe in the right to safe,free, legal terminations,the mother's rightss have to supercede those of the father and the foetus she is carrying, or we reduce women to mere incubators

DogAgain Sat 12-Sep-09 21:31:56

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bubble1 Sat 12-Sep-09 21:31:59

found out very late (22weeks) that baby was Down's. As already got a young child, did not feel it fair to write out his future for him...ie carer for his downs' sibling. Late abortions are bad, but every situation is different, too grey an area to make a decision that is right for all.

LuluMaman Sat 12-Sep-09 21:32:15

however distasteful, i believe termination up to term should be available,as i believe it is done for medical rather than social reasons,and again the wishes of teh mother has to supercede anything else

Wonderstuff Sat 12-Sep-09 21:32:23

I hate the term 'pro life' everyone is pro life really. After I had a mc I thought long and hard about this, because I was shocked at how sad I was, to me I had lost a baby even though it was only a 6 week old embryo.

But actually my opinions didn't change. I feel women absolutly need the right to choose to terminate. It is rarely an easy option. In fact the only friends who seemed to understand my sadness after miscarrage were friends who had terminations (no one in my circle of friends had miscarried).

I think that the current law works well. I think that late abortions are rare and done for good reason if mothers health is at risk.

I am thankful that we don't have the situation that they have in the US where it is so political and many women don't have access to abortion services.

PacificDogwood Sat 12-Sep-09 21:34:57

I am in theory very much pro choice, however in practice struggle not to judge some termination requests in RL (I am GP) since I had my own children. It is hard to remain impartial when 19 year old attends for 3rd termination, however it is then doubly important to maintain a good relationship with her and go over her contraceptive options again when all is said and done sad.
I am also very glad I never had to make the decision whether or not to terminate a pregnancy. IME the very vast majority of womaon do not make the decision at all lightly and those who suffer psychologically afterwards are often those who terminanted for the "wrong" reasons (money, pregn not planned and terminated v quickly without having time to really think about it, to save others feeling ("I could never tell my mum"), etc etc).
Late terminations are heartbreaking to all concerned as the vast majority are done for babies with severe malformations. Woman having late terminations (thankfully a small minority) do not need judgement, they need support and sympathy, IMO.

DogAgain Sat 12-Sep-09 21:35:16

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DogAgain Sat 12-Sep-09 21:37:54

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woozlet Sat 12-Sep-09 21:39:41

Having had an abortion 5 years ago I am very much pro choice. I do agree however that the 24 week limit should be lowered, unless in the case of medical issues.

bubble1 Sat 12-Sep-09 21:42:33

Problem with lowering the limit is that amnois are not available until 20 weeks then two week wait, leaving no time for thinking it over

MrsShrekTheThird Sat 12-Sep-09 21:43:18

DA - thanks, I wasn't being nosey - only wondered if there was a support issue buried in here somewhere, that's all - have seen you on other threads so not being judgy iyswim smile
that must have been a bit shock to click to view something you thought was a developing baby and it turns out to be a termination. Agree it does set your mind on a whole track, no matter how many times you have discussed it.
Very thoughtful posters here - varied opinions but lots of respect.

2shoes Sat 12-Sep-09 21:44:09

I think it should be made higher, so all are treated the same, if you can abort for disability upto term imo it should be the same for non disability.

PacificDogwood Sat 12-Sep-09 21:44:35

Look at the legal requirements here. A pregnancy can be terminated right at its v end if the womans life is in danger etc. Thank goodness I've never had any dealings with this sad.

pasturesnew Sat 12-Sep-09 21:45:30

Personally, I couldn't do it, I do think that babies are people when in the womb but my feelings are particularly strong due to the loss of a much-wanted pregnancy at 7 weeks when I had thought and dreamed a lot about our child before, during and after the pregnancy.

However, I would not judge another woman if she felt that this decision had to be made, as I know that a lot of different and difficult circumstances could lead to that decision and I have never met any woman who has been through it who has suggested it is simply a form of contraception (although I have heard this view elsewhere sad).

But I am conflicted / confused about the following even on a personal basis:

- identical twins don't come into existence straight away and this could happen a fortnight after conception - so I suspect this means that the morning after pill would not terminate a baby but a collection of cells which are not yet purposeful;
- in countries and times when abortion has been illegal the practice is driven underground and women have died in really horrific ways, surely we wouldn't want this;
- where there is a tubal ectopic pregnancy it is clear that the baby cannot develop or live but the mother will die, so the law obviously needs to allow treatment in these circumstances, and I am not sure but I think some countries anti-abortion laws would not even allow this, which is pretty much murdering the mother in these circumstances surely?
- I think that technically it is an "abortion" or "termination" when a woman is pregnant with a baby that really absolutely cannot survive outside of the womb and the doctors advise not to continue the pregnancy e.g. if a baby has no brain and is only alive because of the mother's support systems, which I think might only be diagnosed at a 20 week scan and therefore the law needs to allow "late abortion" in these circumstances. This last reason for "abortion" is a difficult medical issue and I am sure that there may be conditions which are not totally clear cut but I think the law needs to give space for medical opinion to work rather than force women to have full-term stillbirths.

I do think there should be more support for unplanned pregnancies, as I suspect that many abortions may not be for unwanted babies. I don't think that teenage mothers should have to feel like unfit mothers, for example, simply because of their age.

I don't think abortion should be easy to do or socially seen as simply a form of contraception, because then women may feel it is hard to make a stand against partner or family pressure to do it BUT then again it has to be accessible because it is better for the woman's health to do it as early in the pregnancy as possible if it is going to be done (although feels a bit like Macbeth typing this, as in, "If it were done, when 'tis done, then twere well/It were done quickly").

DogAgain Sat 12-Sep-09 21:46:03

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pasturesnew Sat 12-Sep-09 21:47:01

I also think that there should be more support for families with disabled children and a full place for disabled people in our communities.

Harimosmummy Sat 12-Sep-09 21:48:30

I am Totally pro-choice.

I am blessed with two gorgeous children, neither of whome were planned, within two years of marriage.

I'm not going to say I can walk in the shoes of a woman who is struggling TTC and the problems associated with that.

Neither am I going to say I can walk in the shoes of someone struggling with a PG that, for whatever reason, can't be continued.

All I can say is: There but for the grace of God.

And I truly mean that. I am lucky beyond words to have my children and I am equally lucky that I never had to make a difficult decision.

I feel that anyone in the position of having to choose, at any stage, to terminate a PG should be given support. My support will always be for the mother...

MrsShrekTheThird Sat 12-Sep-09 21:49:28

pastures, you speak volumes - (no I don't mean your post is over long) what I mean is that you have completely identified all the things that you think - and I share all of that with you. You put it really well.

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