‘I couldn’t believe someone would think it would be all right to have a termination because his view was that baby isn’t going to live and he automatically assumed I would take a termination.’
Abortion activists claim that feticide is about “choice,” but the reality is that when abortion is legalized, in many circumstances it becomes an expectation. Many women find this out the hard way — when they discover that they are pregnant, it turns out that the availability of abortion has created the expectation among men who do not consider themselves fathers that they will simply get an abortion.
It is their choice, and thus their problem. Those who are pregnant, after all, can make themselves unpregnant by procuring an abortion — and this choice will be celebrated, to boot.
The same is true for children who are diagnosed with a disability or life-limiting condition in the womb. Often, mothers are pushed by medical professionals to opt for an abortion if it turns out their son or daughter has Down syndrome, or a condition that will likely end their lives. (Last year, I interviewed the Irish pro-life activist Vicky Wall, who lost a little girl to Trisomy 18, about the work she does with ‘Every Life Counts’ walking with parents and children who have been diagnosed with life-limiting or terminal conditions.) Abortion activists regularly use children like Vicky’s to claim that abortion is necessary, so it is no surprise that many parents find the option being pushed on them.
In fact, according to a BBC story last week, one mother in Guernsey found out that an abortion had been booked by the Medical Specialist Group she was consulting without her consent. Soozy Jenner’s baby, a little girl named Grace, was diagnosed with encephalocele. She asked for a second medical opinion, hoping for an MRI in order to determine what was wrong with her daughter, but didn’t get one. Southampton Hospital also told her that her baby’s “brain stem was damaged,” and in Guernsey she was told that “the baby wasn’t viable.” Despite that, the baby girl had a strong heartbeat.
“The way I was treated was lacking in any bedside manner,” Jenner said. “Ultimately, I wasn’t given an MRI as I’d chosen to go against their wishes.” And what were “their wishes”? That Jenner get an abortion and have Grace killed and surgically removed.
In fact, the medical team was so confident that Jenner would choose this option that they went ahead and booked an abortion for her without her consent. When she declined, Jenner says the attitude of the doctor changed immediately.
“I was completely shocked,” she said. “I couldn’t believe someone would think it would be all right to have a termination because his view was that baby isn’t going to live and he automatically assumed I would take a termination. I refused it and after that nobody got in touch with me. I had to seek out that second opinion.”
According to the Medical Specialist Group: “No patient can be booked in for a procedure without their consent. Without commenting on an individual case as that would breach the patient’s confidentiality, we can say in general terms that we would never and indeed could never book a patient for a procedure without consent.” Despite that, this apparently did take place.
Soozy Jenner carried her daughter to term, and baby Grace died during labor. She does not regret her decision to treasure the limited time she had with baby Grace rather than having her life “terminated” as suggested. Faced with having only a few months with her daughter, Jenner did what most people do when they realize their time with a loved one will be cut short: She valued it even more.
Unfortunately, our medical institutions consider the lives of children like Grace to be worthless. Because her life was short, their logic goes, they should simply make it shorter by ending it. The shock of Jenner’s doctor when she declined to terminate her daughter’s life is revealing — it tells us that most parents, in those circumstances, either want an abortion or cave to pressure.
After all, the Medical Specialist Group was so certain that Jenner would agree with their evaluation of her daughter’s life that they proactively booked an abortion.
Editor’s note. This appeared at The Bridgehead and reposted with permission.