Archives For It’s So Personal

A reader writes:

In August 1989, my then five-and-a half-month pregnant wife and I went in together for a routine sonogram at her OB's office. The sonogram showed that the fetus was Davinci

Immediately after the test we sat down with the OB in her office where she told us the reality of what we were facing. We scheduled a hospital visit for the next day. At the hospital they induced labor and the pregnancy was terminated. The baby was a little girl and she died during delivery. We were able to hold her for about an hour after the procedure. We named her and buried her.

It was a traumatic time and decision, but it was the right decision to make. How can you make a woman carry a baby to term when she know that the baby will die soon after it is delivered? Psychologically how much damage does that do to the mother and the family who cares for her?

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A reader writes:

I know that you and many others do not approve of late-term abortions and those who perform them and I understand the reasons.  However, there is one aspect of this moral dilemma which I have not seen addressed by you or the media: the fact that clinics like Dr. Tiller's can help SAVE the lives of unborn children. Here is my best friend's story…

Davinci My friend "Katie" is pro-choice, and her husband "Rob" (raised Catholic) always considered himself pro-life.  They have two wonderful children, one of whom is a special needs child.  With all of the complications of raising their autistic daughter they decided against having a third.  But Mother Nature vetoed this decision and Katie became unexpectedly pregnant at the age of 39.  Though unplanned, there was no question they would keep the child. So they initially decided against any invasive screening.  However, due to her age and other factors, the doctors recommended extra testing.  And sure enough, one of the tests came back with measurements that indicated chromosomal issues and/or heart deformities.

It was then that the reality of their situation sunk in. Rob started seriously thinking about what their situation might be if they had another child with even bigger medical issues and perhaps Down syndrome.  So it was Rob who asked Katie whether they should get genetic testing.  She agreed.  In the meantime, Rob was experiencing ambivalence about the future and what the best choice might be.  Time became a factor; Katie was starting to show and was bonding with the baby, whatever its condition.  Rob, on the other hand, became more and more certain they couldn't handle another baby with severe health issues.

Katie and Rob started discussing the "what ifs".  What if it had Down's – keep it or not?  What if it didn't have Down's but major cardiac malformations – keep it or not?  All this they had to think through in a short amount of time while they waited for the genetic test results. They still were in an "acceptable" window to terminate.  Katie knew that if the fetus had any major issues, Rob wanted to abort.  She, the "pro choice" one, was not so sure.  Although the clock was ticking, they agreed to wait for the test results.

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The It’s So Personal Series

Andrew Sullivan —  Jun 7 2009 @ 8:21pm

Kate Dailey understands what we are trying to do.

A reader writes:

My twins were delivered at 29 weeks and 3 days because I had severe Davinci high that there was a risk the boys’ oxygen supply would be cut off, leading to brain damage. 

So I had a C-section.  The boys were in the NICU for 9 weeks. Owen in particular had a hard time; he was on oxygen and IV for a long while, had a heart murmur, and aspirated his milk.  Retinopathy  affected both boys, so they both wear glasses and always will.  Oliver had surgery for a couple of hernias.  They are now three and speech delayed, so we're going through testing to determine if they're autistic.
 
The reason I give you a brief outline of my boys' birth and development is because they were born nearly six weeks after a fetus is considered “viable”.  To be perfectly honest, I don’t view my children as having been viable when they were born; I couldn’t feed them by mouth (the suck/swallow reflex doesn’t develop until at least 35 weeks), they couldn’t breathe on their own, their digestive systems didn't work properly, they couldn't regulate their body temperature (having no body fat), etc, etc.

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It’s So Personal: A Round-Up

Andrew Sullivan —  Jun 5 2009 @ 12:35pm

Many readers have asked us to compile the various late term abortion testimonials we published this week (which are only a fraction of the ones we've received). Here they are, in chronological order:

Fetus It's So Personal
It's So Personal, Ctd
The Catholic Mother
The Trauma
A Doctor's View (reader reaction)
A Target Of Terror
The Regret
Not Knowing For Sure
When Principle Meets Reality
Serial Abortions (reader reaction)
Preparing For The Worst
An Unforgiving Family (reader reaction)
The Guilt
Holding On
The Gay Fathers
What Guilt?
Ectopic "Miscarriage"

Still more to come. (And maybe a bound collection? We're actively thinking of it, prompted by many reader requests. But this should be a useful link for now.)

A reader writes:

My heart goes out to the Davinci pregnancies don't last. They aren't in the uterus. They simply don't go to term, except in extremely rare and bizarre cases. You have one choice: seek treatment immediately. Or wait for a natural miscarriage and risk major abdominal surgery, infection, infertility, and death. The baby will not live regardless.

I had an ectopic pregnancy scare in January. (It turned out to be a run-of-the mill none-ectopic miscarriage.) My doctor didn't hesitate to tell me to take a chemotherapy drug that ends the pregnancy. But she didn't use the word "abortion." No obstetrician would consider ending an ectopic pregnancy an abortion. No pro-life obstetrician would refuse to treat one and send you off to Planned Parenthood. They would consider it a medical necessity — a treatment of a life-threatening illness.

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A reader writes:

I cannot help but think you are cherry-picking your printed stories, highlighting those who have had enormous difficulty with abortion, simply because you yourself have difficulty with abortion.  
 
Here is my own story. I got pregnant when I was 22 by my then-fiance (now husband).  I was, at that time, not ready to be a parent.  I certainly could have done it, but I wasn't personally ready. And to me, if Davinci I'm not ready to have a child, I should not have one.  Children are a big responsibility – not one that one should assume just because they got unlucky one night.
 
After I took the store-bought test, I immediately scheduled an abortion (which was a trick, since I had no privacy at work).  First, I called a place I whose ad appeared to be offering abortions ("Pregnant?  Don't want to be?  Call us").  I didn't know about fake pro-life pressure clinics at that time (aka "crisis pregnancy centers").  They didn't tell me their agenda, just scheduled me for an appointment. But I could tell something was weird, so I canceled it.  I only later discovered that they put out misleading ads to trick women.  I think trying to trick desperate, pregnant women is about as shady as one can get.

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