HomeoldWhen abortion is the man’s choice

When abortion is the man’s choice

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Abortion is presented as a woman’s right, yet a study has revealed that 64% of women feel pressured by their partners to have an abortion. Men may exert pressure on their partners to have an abortion for various reasons, including a desire to avoid the financial responsibilities of child support.

One common method by which men influence women to have abortions is by threatening to leave them. In some cases, a woman may be so emotionally dependent on her partner that she is willing to sacrifice her unborn child in order to retain his affection. In other instances, the threat of physical violence or financial dependence is a factor. It is, however, unsurprising that these efforts to maintain the relationship often prove unsuccessful. In many instances, the man will ultimately leave the woman, or the couple will separate due to resentment and regret about the abortion.

In her book, Frederica Mathewes-Green presents a compendium of testimonies from women who have undergone abortions. One account was that of a woman named Eunice. Eunice was influenced by her husband to have an abortion. However, even at the last moment, she desired that he would intervene in a manner that would halt the procedure, as is commonly depicted in traditional narratives.

“When I was in the clinic waiting for the abortion, I kept hoping my husband would show up. I kept hoping that he would come in and say, ‘Don’t do this! I’ve changed my mind!'”

Subsequently, the couple divorced, as the emotional distress associated with the abortion proved to be overwhelming.

Another case presented in Mathews-Green’s book concerns Kate, whose husband was experiencing health problems at the time of her pregnancy.

“Nobody asked me, ‘Is this really what you want?’… I was hoping and praying that someone, my husband, would come in and stop it. But he was totally against what I wanted to do. I felt I was just being selfish, wanting the child; it was too much of a burden on his health”. I ask her how her husband’s health is now; she replies that he’s fine, but he’s not her husband anymore. He left her a couple of years ago.

A study conducted in 1985 revealed that 70% of relationships that underwent an abortion subsequently dissolved. [Vincent M. Rue, “Abortion in Relationship Context,” International Review of Natural Family Planning, Summer 1985, p.105.] This study, conducted over three decades ago, indicates that feelings of guilt and resentment can have a detrimental impact on the stability of a relationship following an abortion. This may be an area worthy of further investigation. A more contemporary study could serve to verify the conclusions of the 1985 study.

I recall a former classmate from high school, who, two decades after undergoing an abortion, was observed to be in a state of distress while speaking on the telephone. She was a 16-year-old adolescent at the time of the incident, and the pregnancy resulted from a sexual encounter with her boyfriend. Her boyfriend, who was several years her senior, was insistent that she undergo an abortion. Furthermore, the girl’s mother exerted considerable influence, stating that her son would undoubtedly abandon her if she did not undergo the procedure. My friend recounted that this woman counseled her to terminate the pregnancy, citing the potential for her boyfriend to resent her forever if she became pregnant. The girl proceeded with the abortion. Within a week of the abortion, he terminated the relationship. Subsequently, she experienced suicidal ideation and depressive symptoms, leading to her hospitalization in a mental health facility. Throughout this period, she maintained the secrecy of her pregnancy and abortion, even from me. Subsequently, she informed others that she had experienced a miscarriage. It took her 20 years to even express what had occurred to her, and she continues to experience the trauma of the abortion on a daily basis. She continues to grieve for her child, whom she has named.

It is unfortunate but true that a man who pressures a woman to have an abortion against her will is unlikely to remain in the relationship. It is challenging, but women must resist the pressure they may face from their partners. It is imperative that crisis pregnancy centres and other pro-life groups are sensitive to the problem and are there to help and support women to find the courage to resist.


Daniel Miller is responsible for nearly all of National Right to Life News' political writing.

With the election of Donald Trump to the U.S. presidency, Daniel Miller developed a deep obsession with U.S. politics that has never let go of the political scientist. Whether it's the election of Joe Biden, the midterm elections in Congress, the abortion rights debate in the Supreme Court or the mudslinging in the primaries - Daniel Miller is happy to stay up late for you.

Daniel was born and raised in New York. After living in China, working for a news agency and another stint at a major news network, he now lives in Arizona with his two daughters.

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