Human Rights

A father’s heartbreaking story…and Planned Parenthood’s response to men like him

“Tough luck.”

Recently, a man I will identify by the initials RDF shared on Facebook a heartbreaking story of loss. His girlfriend was pregnant with twins. She was almost twenty weeks along when she went to Planned Parenthood, considering abortion. I will let him tell the story in his own words:

She went into Planned Parenthood because she was “too young” (24) and wasn’t ready for children. She hadn’t “planned” to be a parent. I know… It’s ironic that a person who hadn’t planned to be a parent would visit “Planned Parenthood” to have her babies murdered inside her and then sucked out in little bits and pieces. That doesn’t sound anything at all like “planning” to me.

There were protesters there with posters and booklets and handouts… Offering insight, wisdom, help… An alternative to murder. She walked past the pictures of cut up babies. She ignored the small group of protesters. She was expressing her “legal rights”. She was expressing her “Womanly Rights”. She was a “modern woman”. Her life was about her. Not about the inconvenience of the “fertilized eggs” that were inside her.

They weren’t babies yet. She was less than 20 weeks pregnant… by a few days. Though the Sonogram showed two little babies. With fingers and hands… And feet and faces… And heartbeats… Two little innocent babies who were being protected by their mother in the safety of her womb. Two little babies who had never experienced hurt or pain, who never knew the evils of this world or the great wonders of this world. Who were completely 100% innocent. Alive… Waiting to be born.

The night before the abortion, we were talking about alternatives. I cried. She cried. She was a loose Christian. She believed in God in a spiritual sense but didn’t believe in the God of the Bible. I put my hand on her hand and then on her stomach and prayed and said, “Dear Lord, Please guide us through this dark and confusing hour. Please point us in the direction that only you know is right… Dear Lord…” And then we felt the strongest kick. And then another… And another. I cried. She cried. “The Lord is speaking to us. He answered our prayers.” She said, “But I’ve already made the appointment.” And I said, “That appointment means nothing, God has spoken to us.” I felt it. She said she felt it too. For the first time in her life… She felt God speaking to her.

Later that night, we were talking about the future and future plans. She said, “I’m not ready to be a mother.” I told her that nobody is. She said, “I’m scared.” I told her that every mother is scared. Although she wasn’t enrolled in college at the time, she wanted to go. I was enrolled in a Bachelor’s Program and was working toward my degree. She said, “But I want to finish college and do something with my life.” I told her that I would help with the baby and somehow we’d both finish college. “It might be harder. We may have to make some sacrifices but we’ll get through it.” She said that she was going to college and I could stay home and watch the baby. I was working for Lockheed Martin at the time and a condition of my employment was that I had to be enrolled in a Bachelor’s Program. So we disagreed on who was going to finish college first.

The fear and the anxiety and the uncertainty… Led to a small disagreement that ended with us going to bed not talking. She faced one way. I faced the other.

That morning I got up and was getting ready to go to work. I thought everything was going to be fine. We made it through the storm. She came downstairs and said, “I’m going through with it.” “What?” She said, “I’ve made up my mind. I’m going through with it.” She asked me to drive her to the clinic.

I tried to reason with her. She wasn’t having it. I refused to take her. She called a cab. I thought to myself, “If I let her get in that cab, she’ll surely go through with it.” So I agreed to take her to Planned Parenthood in hopes of talking her out of it. She wasn’t having any of that. I tried to talk. She was silent. Not a word. I drove. She stared out the window. She was stubborn. She was a “modern woman”, nobody was going to tell her what to do… Not me… Not God… Nobody.

So we got to Planned Parenthood and I pulled into the parking lot and parked as close as I could to the protesters. She was unfazed. I walked with her through the small group of protesters. I took a pamphlet and tried to give it to her. She was determined. I said, “Look those are fingers. That’s a head. They were alive. Our babies are alive.” She was walking briskly… She pretended she didn’t hear me. We got to the security gate of Planned Parenthood and rang the doorbell. A woman came out and unlocked the gate and then locked it behind us. We went into the lobby of the building. I grabbed my girlfriends hand, “Don’t do this.” She tried to pull her hand back and said, “I’m not ready to be a mother.” “Please, don’t do this. Reconsider” The lady who escorted us in told her the clinic was on the second floor. “Please, We can get through this. Don’t kill our babies.” She pulled her hand back, turned away from me and went up toward the clinic.

I was defeated. I left the clinic and got in my car and drove way too fast down the street. I ran a couple of red lights. I was so scared and angry and hurt and lost and all the emotions like a broken damn came flooding through me. I wanted to scream. I was helpless to protect my babies. I was completely unable to do a single thing to protect them. Where were my rights? Where were the rights of those two beautiful babies? What in the hell did rights have to do with murder? Nobody has the right to murder!!! All of these thoughts flooded my emotions like a freight train… with each box car a thought… And it was going 500 miles per hour through my head. And then…. like an explosion… A tragic horrific wreck… A screeching scraping explosion of thought…

Everything went high pitch… And then went silent….

The moment my children were murdered, a ripple, a shockwave went through my body. Though I wasn’t there… I felt it. I knew something terrible had just happened in that moment. She felt it too.

I turned around and drove as fast as I could back to that clinic. I parked my car in the middle of the road in front of the clinic, nearly on top of the protesters. I rang the doorbell by the gate. I rang it again… and again… Finally the same lady came out. She let me in… She said, “You can’t leave your car there, the police will have it towed.” “They can have it, please open the door, let me in.” She opened the door. I ran to the top of the stairs. Up to the clinic. I ran through the doors. I went up to the little window. I asked where my girlfriend was… “She’s in recovery.” My heart sank, “Can I see her?” “Let me check,” the nurse said. A few agonizingly long minutes later she returned and escorted me to the recovery room.

My girlfriend was crying. She said, “I was wrong. I felt them when they died. They pulled my heart out with our babies.” I cried. She cried. She said, “Oh God, what have I done? I feel horrible, empty… I feel barren… Like a dead flower” I cried. She cried. I stayed with her for a few minutes but needed some air. I went down and moved my illegally parked car. I parked away from the protesters in the parking lot. Then went back up. When they finally let her leave… We cried. We walked past the protesters. She could barely stand. She cried the whole way home. “Why didn’t I listen?” “What was I thinking?” And on and on and on… The emotional pain was unbearable.

RDF goes on to say that his girlfriend fell into a suicidal depression. She was soon going in and out of mental institutions. “It ruined her life,” he said.

When your rights… ruin your life… There is something wrong with the law.

He concludes:

It is a big deal. It is devastating to the mother. The little babies feel it. The mother feels it. The father feels it. It is murder.

Sometimes, pro-lifers unwittingly give strength to the stereotype that men push women into abortions to free themselves of responsibility. Campaigns like the “BroChoice” movement seem to indicate that many men have this attitude. Statistics from Dr. David C. Reardon’s group The Elliot Institute, which works with women who have had abortions, reveals that, in one study, 64% of women who aborted felt pressured by others (1). Sometimes, this pressure came from the father of the child.

But when pro-lifers focus on the men who want their partners to have abortions, they neglect the many man who desperately want their children. These men may beg and plead, may fight for their children’s lives – but in the end, they have no say.

Planned Parenthood, as well as other pro-abortion groups, have always fought very hard to prevent the father of the baby from having any influence, and they have been very successful. Women are not even required to tell the father. In fact, a law that would have required the husbands of married women to be told about their wives’ pending abortions was found unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in Planned Parenthood v. Casey. A father does not have the right even to know about his partner’s abortion, much less stop it.

Louise Taylor, who was the vice president of medical affairs at Planned Parenthood, summed up PP’s attitude towards the fathers of aborted babies:

But it doesn’t matter how much men scream and holler that they are being left out [of the abortion decision] There are some things that they are never going to be able to experience fully. I say, tough luck. (2)

1. VM Rue et. al., “Induced abortion and traumatic stress: A preliminary comparison of American and Russian women, Medical Science Monitor 10(10): SR5-16 (2004).
2. John Leo “Sharing the Pain of Abortion” Time Magazine, Sept 26, 1983 p 78

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