Analyn Megison became pregnant after a brutal rape. In an article for The American Feminist, she writes, “I remember the smell of my own blood in that struggle to fight him off like it was yesterday.”
Megison knew that she wanted to have her child, though conceived in rape. But people around her pressured her to abort. Some of the people pressuring her were self-proclaimed pro-lifers. Megison also said she faced opposition when she decided to raise her baby rather than make an adoption plan:
Many people pressured me to have an abortion because I was raped, though they called themselves pro-life. From the beginning I had to stand up to those people who would not respect my choice, because I wanted to love and raise my child, not be pushed into any forced adoption arrangement.
She did keep her baby and has no regrets. She says, “My child is absolutely worth every moment of this experience I am sharing with you. Love is stronger than ignorance.” But when people find out Megison is a mother through rape, they often ask her an offensive question:
“Oh… But every time you look at your child… don’t you think of being raped?” Despite this downright bizarre question I have repeatedly had to endure as a rape survivor mother, the truth is that every time I look at my child I think of how grateful I am for this love in my heart and the joy of being a mother to someone so beloved to me who is just absolutely wonderful.
Megison is not alone. For their book “Victims and Victors: Speaking out about Their Pregnancies, Abortions, and Children Resulting from Sexual Assault,” researchers David C. Reardon, Julie Makimaa, and Amy Sobie interviewed women who became pregnant as a result of rape and either aborted or carried to term.
Of the women who had their babies, not a single one regretted her choice to give birth. None of them wished they had aborted their babies. Of 192 women, over 80% said they were happy with their child and their situation. 94% said abortion was not a good answer for women who conceived through rape. Only four women said abortion “might” be a good solution to a rape-conceived pregnancy.
This was in stark contrast to the women who aborted. Eighty-eight percent openly regretted their abortions and wished they had carried to term instead. Only one woman expressed only positive feelings about her abortion. Others felt it may have been the right decision, but it was still traumatic. As one woman said, “It bothers me a lot but maybe it was for the best.” The fact that nearly 90% wished they had chosen life instead of abortion reveals that abortion is not the best solution for pregnancies conceived in rape. 93% of the women agreed that abortion was not the best solution.
Also, of the women who aborted, 43% said they were pressured to abort by family and/or by workers at the abortion facility. Sadly, it is common for those around a pregnant rape victim to recommend abortion or to simply assume that it is what the woman wants. Too many people believe that a woman can’t possibly love a child conceived in rape. But the many stories of women who love their rape-conceived children prove that this is a myth.