Chapter 3 Preface
Every year, about 40 percent of teenage girls who become pregnant in the United States choose to have an abortion. Around 274,000 abortions were performed on teenage girls in 1996. This figure has caused much controversy between people who advocate a teenager’s right to choose abortion and those who argue in favor of her unborn child.
Pro-life advocates argue that a young girl should not be able to have an abortion, because it violates an unborn child’s right to life. They contend that abortion is murder and is therefore unethical. According to the Teachers for Life Association, “Abortion kills an unborn child. A society that allows abortion is denying the most fundamental human right—the right to life—to one group of human beings, the unborn.” Although some abortion critics make exceptions for teenagers whose pregnancies result from rape or incest, others maintain that the unborn baby should not have to pay for the criminal act of its father. Many abortion opponents argue that the child’s basic right to life overrides any other considerations, including the mother’s welfare.
However, supporters of abortion maintain that a woman should have the right to decide what to do with her body and when to become a parent. Moreover, they argue that most teenage pregnancies are unplanned, and most teenage girls are too immature to become parents. Abortion rights activists claim that it is immoral to force the responsibility of raising a...
(The entire section is 371 words.)
Abortion Is an Option for Pregnant Teenagers
Nothing changes someone’s opinion of you quicker than revealing to them you’ve had an abortion. Some people are genuinely curious about your experience, and respect your right to control your own body as well as your own destiny.
Others (and in my experience these “others” constitute the majority), tense up and recoil from you, as if you’d just informed them you are carrying the Ebola virus and are highly contagious. As someone who has never had an impenetrable shield of high self-esteem, it’s been difficult to get used to.
Not that I’m just running around telling every person I come across about my dirty little secret. For a long, long time I told no one, including the wonderful saint of a guy I’m now married to. But, as my mind processed the emotional aftermath of the abortion, I realized it was something I shouldn’t have to carry around inside of me like a big, black spot on my otherwise healthy soul. That epiphany led to the next logical conclusion—if I was having trouble coming to terms with what that event meant for me as a person and what it meant for my future, other young women were probably grappling with the same thing. Maybe by becoming active and sharing my experiences, I could help someone else deal with what I had had to confront alone.
Whenever I see a blurb on the news about the abortion controversy, my interest is piqued, as if big, flashing neon arrows are pointing...
(The entire section is 1777 words.)
Abortion Should Not Be an Option for Pregnant Teenagers
My name is Liz Kleemeier, and I am proof that abortion is not necessary, a living example of how to handle a problem pregnancy without killing the baby. A woman like me is the abortion industry’s worst enemy. Not only am I a product of a teenage, unplanned pregnancy, but I am also a female that believes she should not have the abortion option.
Abortion advocates offer many arguments for protecting the legality of abortion in this country. Some arguments include “How can I, a man, ever attempt to understand the circumstances surrounding a woman’s right to choose?” Or, “we . . . are in no position to judge.” There is the example of rape, saying that a woman not given the abortion, HAD she become pregnant, would be given a life long reminder of a heinous crime. Some say they know abortion is wrong, but view it as “not their business, so deal with it and move on.”
To that I say, “my life IS my business,” and I resent the abortion laws of this country telling me otherwise.
Years ago a teenager became pregnant and knew that my life was worth any difficulty a teenage pregnancy would entail. She knew I was alive within her, and she let my heart beat on, strong and steady, proclaiming life. She is my hero, and I am thankful.
Abortion Should Not Be Taken Lightly
Abortion has become a form of birth control in this country. A female director of a New York abortion clinic was asked why women have...
(The entire section is 1283 words.)
Adoption Is an Option for Pregnant Teenagers
At first, Amy felt as if her whole life was over. She cried a lot and agonized over how she could’ve avoided the situation. She wished that it was all just a bad dream. But as time passed, reality set in and suddenly she was faced with one of the toughest decisions of her life. Here, in her own words, she describes what happened when she found out she was pregnant and what she decided to do about it.
“When I was 15, almost 16, Eric and I started dating. He was a year older than me, and I really felt like I was in love with him, but my parents absolutely hated him from the moment we started going out. He was a wild one, and I was just an innocent little girl. I had always lived a pretty sheltered life. I was attracted to Eric because he was wild and crazy, and I was totally different from him. We lied to my parents all the time and went out together.
About three months into the relationship, he started mentioning sex just to get my opinion on it. I was curious about it to say the least. It was never something that I could discuss with my parents. It was always, ‘Don’t do it,’ and that was it. He mentioned it now and then, and he promised that I wouldn’t get pregnant, nothing would happen, my parents would never have to know. And so we did have sex. He was my first, but I was not his. He’d been with a lot of girls. I was so immature. I had no idea what I was doing and what risks were involved. He told me...
(The entire section is 2610 words.)
Adoption May Not Be an Option for Pregnant Teenagers
As the “family values”/teen-sex/abortion debate winds on with no end in sight, adoption is being touted as a rare area of consensus: the way to discourage “illegitimacy” while providing poor children with stable homes, the peace pipe in the abortion wars. Whatever may be the difficulties and conflicts of actual people involved in the adoption triangle, at the political level, it’s all win-win: adoption and apple pie.
Whenever I question the facile promotion of adoption as a solution to the problem du jour I get angry letters from adoptive parents. So I want to be clear: Of course adoption can be a wonderful thing; of course the ties between adoptive parents and children are as profound as those between biological ones. But can’t one both rejoice in the happiness adoption can bring to individuals and ask hard questions about the social functions it is being asked to fill? I can’t be the only person who has noticed that the Clinton Administration which supports the family cap—the denial of a modest benefit increase to women who conceive an additional child while on welfare—would bestow on all but the richest families a $5,000 tax credit to defray the costs of adoption. Thus, the New Jersey baby who is deemed unworthy of $64 a month, or $768 a year, in government support if he stays in his family of origin immediately becomes six times more valuable once he joins a supposedly better-ordered household. Maybe unwed mothers should trade kids....
(The entire section is 875 words.)