Roe v. Wade: it’s tearing me up

I’ve read with compassion and concern the responses of many of my close friends and family members to the overturning of Roe v. Wade. I realize that the Supreme Court’s recent decision has injected fear, uncertainty, sadness, and anger into the hearts and minds of many even as it’s made others joyful. I’m sorry for that. But I also know that it’s not so cut and dried as the special interests on either side would make it sound.

I understand that there will be many who will now have to look to their states for a decision on whether they’ll be able to terminate their pregnancies. I also understand that some women will die as a result of undergoing illegal abortions. I willingly stipulate these things up front so that you understand I’m not unaware or dismissive of these things. These break my heart too.

But my heart is broken for aborted children who haven’t had the chance to live. I’m broken-hearted for me too. What I hear you saying is that you would be ok if I had never been born – that you would protest and you would drive my mom to a clinic to abort me. Me. Your friend. Your relative. Your neighbor. Your coworker. Me. Teri.

Would you, could you really?

I was born in 1956 when my mother moved from Oregon to California to give birth and give me up for adoption. Being adopted hasn’t been a piece of cake, but I much prefer that to the alternative.

Every aborted child had the potential to be a friend, relative, neighbor, and coworker. Within him or her may have been a cure for Alzheimers or cancer. He or she might have been a soul mate for your child. Exceptional or ordinary, we’ll never know.

But let’s bring it back to me. I like to think I’ve contributed to this planet in some small measure. I’m a taxpayer, a voter, and have been a county supervisor, a writer, a daughter, mother, wife, and grandmother. On balance I believe my life has been more than worth the year my birth mother sacrificed to give me a start. I think my mom would agree.

So, I’m not writing this to change your mind or shame you. I had two abortions over forty years ago and deeply regret determining the fates and futures of the children I aborted. My right to choose denied their right to live.

All I wanted to say tonight is that you know someone to whom life matters. A lot. If knowing this about me angers you, then go ahead and de-friend, rant, or whatever. I’ll miss you. But before you go, I wanted you to know how I feel too. Because it’s tearing me up.

8 comments

  1. Sorry…. I totally disagree. And yes women will die seeking illegal abortion.
    What ever the reason maybe.. it will be a heartfelt, traumatic, difficult, agonizing decision that should totally be up to the individual woman. If this goes against your own personal belief, moral or religious belief… its absolutely non of your business nor should it be the business of the government.
    I too was adopted at birth.

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    1. It should be the business of the child too, I think. Thanks for sharing your perspective. You would have been ok with being aborted then? Not me. We can disagree. That’s ok too.

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  2. I always appreciate your writings Teri. My struggle with this is that when you take it full circle it doesn’t work out. The unborn becomes a little girl who, depending on the state she lives in, may be forced to give birth at 12 because she was molested by her grandfather and got pregnant. Or the unborn becomes a teenager who is forced to give birth because she was raped by some cretin on her way home from school. Or the unborn becomes a woman who dies because the fetus she is carrying from a wanted pregnancy causes her known complications that she can do nothing to fix. So that important unborn life that needs to be protected is now at risk because of laws that deny her the right to make her own reproductive choices once she is born. My mother gave birth to me at 17 in 1970 and I’m certainly glad I’m here and she would say the same thing. She had planned to go to college and live a very different life than the one she ended up with. She made the choice to keep me-thats important part…choice. (PS-I’m definitely not unfriending you 🙂

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    1. Thanks, June, for your response. You’re right – those are absolutely horrid situations that shouldn’t happen to anyone, but they do. I guess my point was just to say that for me, not being born would have been horrid too. It’s a bit of Sophie’s choice, no? So glad you’re keeping me!!!

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  3. It’s an individual decision. It’s a decision that should be made by a person not a political entity. This is the problem. There are too many men in high political positions making decisions for people they have no idea what they are doing making decisions about things for which they have no knowledge. It’s about power. What makes that right? Nothing, in my opinion. It’s come down to politics. One side against the other. I don’t want to have to choose sides. I don’t want to have to tell people that because of my politics we cannot be friends. That’s not how I want to define my friends or friendships. We can agree to disagree and still be civil and civilized on many issues. My best friend and I disagree and discuss many things over the years but because we are best friends, we can agree to disagree and remain true friends. I wish you well Teri. I do miss having you across the street. The barn is gone. So very sad.

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