Mother of baby aborted due to disability describes her partner’s grief

 

By Sarah Terzo

takehandnotlifeA couple aborted their baby because he or she would’ve been handicapped. In this quote, the mother is talking about her partner’s reaction:

“I think it’s real for him, but there’s just a real difference in how the experience feels. I mean, he doesn’t experience it in the same way, it wasn’t as much of a personal loss, it was a different kind of loss for him. He’s very closed off about his own emotions, and it’s something that he doesn’t articulate, and he doesn’t want to articulate, he prefers to get away from it. He grieves differently… I kept a journal the whole pregnancy, and I wanted to burn that journal to finish it that way… And he couldn’t do it, he just couldn’t do it. The most he could do was read it privately – he absolutely had to do it by himself – and then he had to put it away, he couldn’t burn it… We approach life differently; I just have to respect his way of doing things.” [1]

This quote shows that both men and women sometimes grieve after abortion. Abortion is not the easy, quick solution it seems to be, whether the couple is aborting because they do not want a baby or aborting because they do not want their disabled baby in particular.

[1] Rayna Rapp Testing Women, Testing the Fetus: the Social Impact of Amniocentesis in America (New York: Routledge, 1999) 260