As soon as it was determined that our baby had spina bifida, we were asked if we wanted to terminate her. I want to talk about this a little more. Because, what has bothered me the most about that situation was: 1) How quickly we were asked that question and how quickly they expected an answer, and 2) Why we were asked that question for THIS birth
I mean, RIGHT AFTER the diagnosis of spina bifida was made, we were asked if we want to terminate. REALLY? You literally told me two seconds ago that she had a disability, and you automatically ask this question. Please, think about this. First of all, we still did not really know what spina bifida was and what it might mean for us and our daughter. Why are doctors asking about termination before the parents even understand what the “problem” is? Why not educate us first? But, this is tricky, too, because from everything I have read from others’ experiences as well, the doctors seem to present either inaccurate or only dismal situations for spina bifida. In fact, I have read numerous sources that indicate that medical students only have like a page, or even just a paragraph, of information in their textbooks about spina bifida. I hope that is not true.
Second of all, what we are being told, is that because our daughter has a physical flaw, that she just may not be worthy of living. Why weren’t we asked if we wanted to terminate our sons? Because they were considered “normal”? I mean, really, who gets to determine when a parent is going to be asked about terminating a baby or not? Does ANY physical flaw dictate the question? (Well, apparently for some people – There is a story of a couple who terminated their 28-week-old fetus because of a deformed hand. Are you kidding me?) Who are we to determine which babies get to live, and which do not?
Though my husband and I are completely pro-life, no matter the circumstances, the above is what truly bothers us the most about the topic of abortion. The fact that as soon as a disability is indicated, that the automatic response is: Do you want to terminate?
I understand that there are many people out there, whom are reading this very blog even, that are pro-choice. I will never agree with that stance, but I do understand how people have this opinion. I will not condemn you if you have a different opinion than me. I may pray that you change your mind, that you see the truth behind the idea and practice of abortion, but I will not condemn you. I would hope, though, that people on both sides of the issue could see why this common practice of asking this question immediately is flawed. At least provide accurate, up-to-date information, or require time to think about it before a decision is made. To ask right away, when our mind is spinning with the news, is wrong. SOMETHING needs to change.
I cannot imagine not having Renny. She is BEAUTIFUL, she is WONDERFUL, she is AMAZING, she is AWESOME, and just as importantly, she has and will continue to have a FULL life, and except for maybe a few physical limitations, a NORMAL life. You CANNOT listen to the worse case scenarios that the doctors give. It just does not always happen. And even if it does, I’d be willing to bet everything that that baby will still be BEAUTFUL, WONDERFUL, AMAZING, and AWESOME. I see it all of the time.