Tag Archives: abortion

Men and Pregnancy

Men and Abortion

Since January, 1973, with the legalization of abortion in the US, the primary decision a woman makes in choosing abortion parenting, or adoption has been centered on “a woman’s right to choose.”   Does the father have rights and what about men and abortion?  The Supreme Court says the father does not have any legal rights. [Planned Parenthood of Missouri v. Danforth (1976)].  This means that, though he may have influence as a result of his relationship with the woman, legally, he has no rights at all regarding the decision to carry and parent or terminate.  There’s no requirement that he even be informed.

The decision-making process that precedes an abortion, complicates how the abortion ultimately effects a man.  He may not know about the pregnancy, and so the abortion may happen without his knowledge or input.  He may oppose the abortion, and state that clearly and emphatically.  He may know about the pregnancy, but in trying to be loving, supportive and affirming of the woman’s rights, he may withhold his feelings or beliefs about abortion.  He may have not formed an opinion, and may simply go along with whatever the woman chooses.  He may support and even encourage her choice to terminate.  He may pressure her, using coercion and threats to leave her if she doesn’t agree to abort.  Or, he may completely abandon her, walking away from the relationship and the responsibility for the pregnancy, leaving her to cope and decide on her own.

These different reactions will have different levels of impact on the man, both in terms of his own emotional responses and his relationship with the woman.  If he pressures, encourages or even actively supports the abortion because he is fearful or complacent, he can have a significant emotional response later when he lives with the reality of abortion and how it may affect him and the woman.  If he abandons her, either literally, or by withholding his feelings and beliefs, he may find himself in the same boat.

The most common initial responses after an abortion to which he agreed to or maybe did not agree to are:

  1. Relief – relief the abortion is over and the decision to have an abortion. Relief the relationship can possibly get back to “normal”.
  2. Anger – anger he did not express his desires for this baby to be born or anger he had no rights. Anger he felt he had no control over the decision-making process.
  3. Denial – beginning to deny the experience or decision, to lock away the emotions and not deal with them, and to keep silent about it all thinking it will go away. All of which could lead to other destructive and complicated behaviors if not dealt with.

So, what is the long-term impact of abortion on the men involved?  There are as many as 28 studies which indicate most men feel overwhelmed, and many have disturbing thoughts about the abortion.  Often men generally are not very comfortable expressing vulnerable emotions like grief, guilt and shame.  They tend to go silent and withdraw, or become angry leading to hostility and sometimes aggression.  They may struggle with depression and anxiety.  They may wrestle with feelings of helplessness and powerlessness.  They may suppress their emotions, or become angry and belligerent. Whether they remain in relationship with this particular woman or not, their relationships going forward can be negatively impacted by the abortion experience.

Sometimes when a couple faces an abortion decision, a genuinely caring man feels he is trying to be supportive of the woman he loves, stay silent for the express purpose of making her feel empowered, of not pressuring her, and making sure she knows she can make the best decision for her own life.  Yet often the end result is what she most needs, his stabilizing presence and his opinion, his silence causes her to feel alone and abandoned.  The destabilizing of the relationship often begins in the silence and the distance that results.  Statistics show that most relationships end after abortion in spite of often believing this will save the relationship it can end it.

The loss of an unborn child through abortion leaves most men at some point trudging through grief, confusion, guilt, and trauma.  His choices are to forge on, trying to deny the undeniable impact of his loss, or to accept his responsibility, grieve the loss and work through his feelings.  If you are such a man, or you are in relationship with one, reach out to someone who can walk with you through the process.

Here at Choices Women’s Clinic we care about women and men and the choices you make.  We are here for you and invite you to consider our ongoing care programs like life coaching or abortion recovery to begin a healthy process of working through difficult decisions.  We believe there is always a way back!

Unplanned Pregnancy

Unplanned Pregnancy…Now What

About 46 percent of all pregnancies in the United States are unplanned.  Which would mean that if you are reading this, you have found yourself in that same situation or know of someone who is. Perhaps you or a friend are seeking advice on what to do next.

When facing an unplanned pregnancy, the first thing that happens is that you are in a state of disbelief.  Maybe such disbelief that t is hard to know exactly what to do next.  When in disbelief, we just want it to go away. The crisis like situation that was not planned for certainly can be overwhelming and even isolating.  It can be difficult to think through what to do next or where to go from here.

While going through this, it is essential to seek out professional information and consider all your options.  It is also essential to take the time to research, seek professional resources, weigh pros and cons, self-reflect and ask yourself specific questions.  Good decisions are not usually quick decisions and not meant to be made alone.

You have 3 choices in your unplanned pregnancy: abortion, parenting or adoption.  Each of those choices are life altering and require you to fully understand each one. You may experience having a fear of telling others and fear of judgment. You most likely have a lot of questions.

  • What kind of abortion procedure would I have, how much does it cost, and what are the risks involved?
  • What does my current support system look like to make each of these choices?
  • What are the risks medically, physically and emotionally of each choice and what is the long term impact?
  • What resources are available to me to make these choices?

You owe it to yourself, your future, and your unborn baby to slow down and make a healthy decision.

I recall facing an unplanned pregnancy at the age of eighteen.   I had recently graduated from high school and left home to live with friends.  I had my agenda of attending college and living “La Vida Loca”.  Finding out that I was pregnant, I was afraid of what people would think or say, especially after leaving my home without my parent’s approval.  I was not in the right place with the father of the baby and did not have a healthy support system.  However, I knew I was at a crossroad of what to do and believed there was only one solution: abortion.

I decided I needed to speak to someone about my unplanned pregnancy.  While driving, I saw a clinic and called and made an appointment to be seen and weigh all my options.  Upon arriving, I felt scared and wondered what they were going to think of seeing a young girl pregnant.  I wondered what they would think about me wanting to have an abortion. What I experienced was quite the opposite where I felt welcomed and not judged.  These strangers provided professional services like an ultra sound and genuinely cared and helped me lay out all three options.

I felt empowered and encouraged, and by the end of that evening, I choose to have my baby and parent.  I was not aware of how I was going to pull this off, but I knew abortion and adoption were not for me.  Twenty-five years later, that has been one of the best decisions that I made.  What seemed to be the worst time in my life brought a great outcome for me. Today I have a son and I can’t imagine my life without him.

Here at Choices Women’s Clinic, we can first provide professional medical services to help you assess your options like ultrasound, a medical consultation and a pre-abortion screening.  We equip women and men to make an informed pregnancy decision. We believe and respect the fact that each person is capable of making a healthy decision when given the proper information. We are here for you regardless of your circumstances or your decisions. Choices Women’s Clinic can provide no cost medical services, non-judgmental consultation and resources to answer any questions and address any issues you may be facing with an unplanned pregnancy.

 

 

Pregnancy Test

Abortion Safety Protocol

So, you have missed a period. You took a home test and you are pretty sure you are pregnant. Maybe you have seen a doctor, and they confirmed your pregnancy. You are pregnant and you have your reasons why you can’t have a baby right now.  So, you’ve decided to get an abortion.

We get it. Not all positive pregnancy tests feel like good news. Sometimes it actually can feel more like your whole world is falling apart. It’s hard, you see no way out or through.  Maybe it is plain scary and overwhelming.  You might feel like you have to make a decision right away before anyone finds out and before things get even more out of control.

First, take a deep breath. In all situations in life we need time to consider the risks or some say the pros and cons of the decision.  Often when we make a rushed decision, we put ourselves in unsafe situations. You deserve to be safe and healthy regardless of your choice for this unplanned pregnancy.  Take a breath.  You don’t have to rush out and do anything right this minute. Here are some questions and answers that will help you be safe and make informed choices.

Have you confirmed your pregnancy? The very first thing you need to know is if you’re really pregnant. At Choices Women’s Clinic, we offer lab-quality urine tests to verify your pregnancy. We can also offer you an ultrasound at no cost to you through licensed medical professionals.  An ultrasound is the best way to know if you have a viable pregnancy, since a high percentage of pregnancies will miscarry. The ultrasound also shows how far along you are, which is important in determining which abortion procedure you would have.  Even if you’ve taken a pregnancy test, it’s important to confirm with a medical professional that you’re still pregnant.

In your decision-making process for your health and safety consider the following:

Are there risks involved with an abortion procedure?  Like any medical procedure, an abortion involves the possibility of some risk.  It’s important that you know your family medical history and your own medical history, and that you research potential risks before making your decision.  Get information from reliable, trusted medical sources or ask a medical professional who has nothing to gain from your decision.

Do you know the qualifications of the abortion provider?  Not all surgeons or doctors have the same experience and expertise.  Equally, not all abortion providers are the same.  As consumers today, we have availability today to research the products we buy and the services we seek.  You would want to know if the doctor performing the procedure is a board-certified OB/GYN.  You might want to check with the FL medical board to see if the physician is involved in any malpractice suits or has judgments against them.

Do you know how the provider handles complications?  When having a medical procedure in a clinic, we need ask how that medical provider handles complications.  A few considerations would be: Does the doctor have privileges at a nearby hospital?  Does the clinic have an emergency plan in place to address complications?  If you have complications once you have been discharged will they see you again and treat you?

Do you know that you can change your mind?  This is your choice.  You can change your mind at any time regardless of where you are in the procedure.  Abortion is a big decision.  You should be absolutely certain this is what you want to do. If you feel pushed or hesitant, you have the right to take the time you need to take a step back and take more time to think it through.

Choices Women’s Clinic cares about you and your safety and well-being. This might be a difficult, overwhelming time, but you don’t have to face this alone. We’re here to listen and give you any information you need to make safe, healthy decisions.