We all probably know someone who has been adopted. In my case, my brother, 8 months my elder is adopted. I also have dear friends who are adopted. I can hardly imagine my life without them. I think about the times I have spent with them, I have participated with them in their success, and seen the things that bring them joy. These people have made me who I am and I am ever grateful to them. The thought that their birth mothers may have been so close to abortion and the idea that these people way not be in my life is enough to make me cringe. I marvel at the love of these birth mothers who so unselfishly carried these precious people to full term to put them into a better situation.
My desire is that each may come to a better understanding of the dangers of abortion, and the positive aspects of adoption. I will discuss the effects on the aborting mother and the anguish that she passes through emotionally and physically. I will touch on proposed methods to educate people about pregnancy and safe sex, and provide information about an organization dedicated to making the adoption process smooth.
The Center for Bio-Ethical Reform states that 52% of abortions are performed on women younger than 25 years old. Teens account for 20% of all abortions. To stunt the problem of teenage pregnancy parents must take responsibility for teaching their kids about sex. Families must discuss the risks of becoming sexually active and the dangers that are associated with having multiple partners. Our schools must also tastefully teach sex-ed and students should be informed on the topics of contraceptives. Teens must understand the power of procreation and the problems that can arise in if this power is misused.
We must also teach the public about the dangerous reality of abortions. Many studies have revealed some startling facts about the after effects of an abortion. The British Medical Journal published that physically, women who have an abortion run the risk of becoming sterile, never able to have a natural child. Those who are not sterile face a greater chance of having complications in their future pregnancies. Many other health concerns arise after an abortion operation such as hemorrhage, convulsions, and severe infection.
Worse than the physical effects are the potential emotional damages to an aborting mother. According to The British Journal of OBGYN, in the weeks after the abortion 50% of women admit to feelings of intense guilt and one-third regret their decision to abort. According to studies by Dr. David Reardon, a leader in the study of post-abortion research tells that the most frequent reactions to an abortion include: depression, loss of self-esteem, self-destructive behavior, sleep disorders, memory loss, sexual dysfunction, chronic problems with relationships, dramatic personality changes, anxiety attacks, guilt and remorse, difficulty grieving, increased tendency toward violence, chronic crying, difficulty concentrating, flashbacks, loss of interest in previously enjoyed activities and people, and difficulty bonding with later children. The most devastating findings from research say that 80% of women who have abortions later express feelings of “self-hatred” with 60% entertaining the thought of suicide with 30% of them actually attempting suicide. These stats are depressing and hopefully they awaken us to a need for an alternative to abortion that avoids the physical and emotional damage.
One organization with the cause of helping women make the decision between adoption and abortion is LDS Family Services. LDS Family Services is an organization run by and paid for by the LDS Church. Although the organization is run by the church, it’s services are available to people of all faiths, religions, races, economic standing, and sexual orientation. According to the LDS Church website, LDS Family Services is a non-profit organization that offers individual, marital, and family counseling. Their unwed parent services include counseling, medical, and educational assistance, along with the adoption services if the parents so chose.
If a mother chooses to give her child up for adoption, LDS Family Services will guide her through the entire process. The mother can choose the couple who will receive her child and the mother and couple may even discuss if the adoption is an open or closed adoption. Although adoption may normally be expensive, this organization is able cut cost thanks to donations from members of the church and donations from members of the community.
This is a topic that is very real and close to me. A lot of the happiness in my life has come from the close interactions I have had with adopted people in my life. On the other hand, I have had the opportunity of meeting with several women who have had abortions. I have looked into their eyes and felt their pain. I have gained a personal knowledge of adoption and abortion and I wish that each of us could gain our own understanding so that when it comes time for us or someone we know to make a decision we will be ready.
I hope that the right to life is always respected. I hope that when a decision is being made about an “un”expectant pregnancy all factors are taken into consideration, especially the factor of potential for both mother and child. I call to each of you who have been informed, to share these dangers of abortion and spread the good news of adoption. In truth, LDS Family Services does not need your money, but they do need you to tell others about their many services, especially those who will benefit as they make the difficult choice as to what steps to take as they deal with an unexpected pregnancy. As we support adoption, we support the life of a mother or an adopted individual who will come into our lives and change us for the better.