A Matter of Personal Choice

First, let me start off by saying that I am an advocate of a woman’s right to choose. I am also an adoptee. Wait for it… Wait for it… yes it sounds like a contradiction. In some people’s opinion, it may be. For me, I feel like a woman should be allowed to decide for herself how she handles her reproductive issues.

I think that a woman in a reproductive crisis has enough drama in her life, and having a radical pro-lifer waving an oversized placard depicting an aborted fetus is unnecessarily cruel.

Back to me. In 1968, my birth mother, a college student at the time, was attacked and raped by 2, 3, or 4 assailants. They were neither identified nor apprehended. She had to live with the shame associated with being raped, and to add insult to injury, she was now pregnant. She was unmarried and unprepared to be a mother. Her doctor was also the doctor of another young woman, who had been unsuccessfully attempting to get pregnant with her husband. The doctor helped to arrange the adoption of the baby of the unmarried college student during her pregnancy. She was able to give birth, resume her education, and put the ugly incident behind her. The couple, my mom and dad, got me, straight from the hospital maternity ward.

Back to the contradiction. The mere thought of being raped by multiple men is enough to handle in and of itself. Learning in addition that I was pregnant by someone who was capable of committing this type of crime nauseates me as I write this. Even now, knowing the story of why I was put up for adoption, I don’t know that I could have made the same choices that she made.

Initially, I had issues wrapping my brain around the circumstances of my conception. Who wouldn’t? But something in me on e day stood up and said, “You didn’t ask to come here.” For whatever reason, it resonated with me. I decided that instead of dwelling on how I came to be, it was more important to concentrate on who I became.

So I applaud my birthmother and many countless others who made difficult decisions under impossible circumstances. I am glad that she was able to take the route that she did, and I am grateful that she had options to choose from. Every woman in this situation should be able to choose this option for themselves, without coercion from the conservative left or government mandate.

Now before you pass judgment on me, think about the situation. In place of my birth mother, insert yourself, or better yet, insert your daughter. The choice doesn’t necessarily seem so clear anymore, does it?

“Not here by mistake. No luck, only grace…” – Kirk Franklin’s “I Am” from Hello Fear


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