Tuesday, February 1, 2011

“Mommy, what’s an abortion?”

Talking to Girls about Abortion
I had a conversation recently I was definitely not ready, or prepared to have. One evening my nine year old daughter, Hannah, and I were sitting in my bed about to watch a movie. I was just finishing up writing something on the laptop and had Twitter open.  I saw a tweet from a pro life activist and without thinking clicked the link in the tweet, thinking it was going to an article. Oops. If I had looked closer, I would have seen it was a picture link. The tweet said something along the lines of “know the truth about abortion”. I thought that was a curious way of putting things, don’t you? Well, the truth was there, right under my nose! I quickly clicked away having Hannah right there beside me, but she saw it. It was a picture of a baby aborted … late term.  It was one of an entire album of pictures of aborted babies of varying points during a pregnancy.  She insisted I click back to the picture- “Mama, what was THAT?”.
The conversation went something along the lines:
“It’s a picture of a baby that has been aborted.”
“Mommy, what’s an abortion? Is that baby dead?”
“Yes, that baby is dead. A doctor took it out of its mommy’s belly before it was ready to be born, and it was not able to live.”
“Why did the doctor take it out?”
“Because (long pause) the mommy didn’t want to have a baby.”
“Did the mommy know the baby would die?”
(long pause)

“Why did the mommy want the baby to die?”
“Some women get pregnant but do not want to have a baby, so they get abortions”
“Why do they get pregnant if they don’t want to have a baby?”
(My mind is racing at this point, sitting in utter disbelief we’re having this conversation at all)

“They don’t mean to get pregnant on purpose, but sometimes they just do. Maw maw and paw paw did not get pregnant with mommy on purpose, I was a surprise to them.”
“…and they did not get an abortion so you were born.”
“Isn’t aborting a baby, killing it?”
“What do you think?”
“Do you think aborting babies makes God happy?”
She saw the preview for the “next” and “last” pictures and said “click mama, click!”. So we clicked through the entire album. Bloody pictures, an arm, a leg,  tiny feet ... little tiny bodies. She sat there staring at one picture for a minute and her voice cracked a little, and she said “turn it mommy. That’s making me so sad. I’m never going to have an abortion. I’m going to have my baby!” I give her a hug and say “I know that makes God happy. Just remember you have to be married before you start thinking about babies”
She answers me with “Isn’t that the only way you can have a baby?”
“Why yes, sweetie, it is. Let’s go get a snack.” “Okay!”
Hey, she’s nine. I’m keeping it simple!

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