Men and Abortion
This is the last in a three-part series of articles originally published in our Summer print newsletter. You may download the full Summer 2021 newsletter here.
FROM THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Whether you realize it or not, both women and men make abortion decisions when facing an unplanned pregnancy. While legally the final decision rests with the mother, men have a great deal of influence in helping their partner make a pregnancy decision.
In a study at two Midwest abortion clinics, 210 male partners were interviewed. Of those 210, 57% said they would not have chosen to terminate the pregnancy had it been up to them.* Most men want to be supportive but feel like they have no say or that their partner wouldn’t want to hear their opinion. All too often men follow the culture and say it’s your body, your choice, even if they don’t feel that way themselves. Even if they don’t want her to get the abortion.
What most men don’t realize is that their support is the most influential voice when a woman is making a pregnancy decision.
When working with women who have an abortion in their past, I have heard the anguish in her voice as she recalls how even when she was lying on the table in an abortion clinic, she was praying that he would barge in and protect her and his baby. Another client conveyed to me that when she told her partner she was pregnant he replied to do what she felt was best, but then resented her after the abortion was done.
I truly believe that if her partner steps up and commits to standing by her and their child, encouraging her not to get an abortion, she will go against any other influence, feeling empowered by his support. Men, please do not fall into the cultural thinking that she doesn’t want you involved when in fact your voice is the one that matters the most. Even if you do not want to remain in the relationship, it is your responsibility to help her and support your child.
Our Men’s Mentoring ministry is designed to help encourage and support dads so they can be a better support and encouragement to their partner and their child. Our male volunteers come alongside these dads with hands-on, one to one guidance and assistance. One male client called our office telling us that as a result of a one night stand, the girl told him she was pregnant and he wanted nothing to do with her or the baby. One of our male mentors built a relationship with him, advising him about job applications and interviews, relationship issues, and how to be a good dad. 9 months later, he texted our volunteer a picture of his newborn son with the caption, “My new fishing buddy.”
At Birthright, we continue to see the powerful and potentially positive influence men have on their partners, especially when it comes to making a pregnancy decision. We pray that more and more men will see the gift of new life in a pregnancy and stand boldly beside his partner and his child.