While the abortion debate usually centers around women, it’s important to remember that in many situations, there’s another person who is affected.
Some fathers are heartbroken, helpless to prevent the murder of their children, powerless to protect them. A father can beg and plead with the mother of his preborn babies to allow them to live, but ultimately, according to the most common interpretation of the law, there’s nothing he can do.
[Note: If you are a father who wants to know how to try to stop an abortion, see this article.]
How would any mother feel if she was forced to watch, helpless, as the father of her children methodically killed them? It’s a heavy burden for these fathers to carry. And one father has written a heartbreaking account of the pain he endures now, as he has to live with the daily knowledge that his wife chose to kill two of their preborn babies.
This father and his wife struggled with infertility, and turned to IVF to help them realize their dream of a family. They were blessed with one child, and decided to try for another. They implanted three embryos, and as can happen, all three stayed. His wife was pregnant with triplets. She insisted that she would not carry triplets, or even twins, and so would either do a “selective reduction,” or abort all three of them.
Before the procedure, my wife’s eyes teared up; she asked the doctor over and over if they would feel pain, and was assured they would not. I asked again if my wife was sure about this because once done, it could not be undone. She said she was sure, but her tears and her looking away from the screen, deliberately, and her wanting me to not look either, told me the truth: she knew as well that this was wrong. I wanted to insist that she look, but I think that her mind — already fractured by the news of triplets — would have snapped permanently had she seen the images onscreen. And to save the one, and for the sake of the one we already had, I needed my wife sane.
… Each retreated, pushing away, as the needle entered the amniotic sac. They did not inject into the placenta, but directly into each child’s torso. Each one crumpled as the needle pierced the body. I saw the heart stop in the first, and mine almost did, too. The other’s heart fought, but ten minutes later they looked again, and it too had ceased.
The doctors had the gall to call the potassium chloride, the chemical that stopped children’s hearts, “medicine.” I wanted to ask what they were trying cure — life? But bitter words would not undo what had happened. I swallowed anything I might have said.
I know they felt pain. I know they felt panic. And I know this was murder. I take cold comfort in knowing that as far as we can tell, the survivor is still fine, and in knowing that this decision did not come from me; I would have taken the chance on triplets, even with all the work and effort it would have required. I pray that this one child will come to term, will be born into this world alive and healthy, and I know he or she will have all our love.
Now, he says that the “emotional scar” from the deaths of his preborn children will hurt him for the rest of his life, that there are two smiles he will never see. He says he prays every day for forgiveness, even though he was powerless to help them. And he shines a light on the grisly reality of what we’re doing when we kill our preborn children:
But let nobody fool you. It is not painless for the child, and anyone who says otherwise is a liar. Abortion is not an excision of a featureless bunch of cells; it is infanticide. We have revived the practice of child sacrifice to the new deities of casual sex and convenience. We rationalize the reality of murder by altering our perspective of the nascent life through euphemisms like “fetus” or descriptions of “a clump of cells”…just like the Nazis convinced themselves that the people screaming as they were shot or gassed were “Untermenchen,” subhuman, and therefore guiltlessly exterminated.
It’s sad, yet it’s the insightful truth of what abortion is. We dehumanize preborn children so that we can rationalize why it’s acceptable to kill them.
And this father’s agony also shows that abortion is not the guilt-free convenience that abortion advocates insist it is. Even his wife, who insisted on the “selective reduction,” could not bring herself to watch. She cried as she asked if they would feel any pain. She knew of the humanity of her children. She just wouldn’t allow herself to face it. And one day, when she’s no longer able to block out that reality, she will undoubtedly suffer as her husband is now.