In the documentary “Pro-Life Without Exception!” Anna Richy, who gave birth to a child conceived in incest, tells her story about having been molested as a child for several years by her stepfather. When she became pregnant at age 12, her stepfather was afraid the incest would be exposed. He forced Richy to take pills to abort her baby and hit her repeatedly in the stomach until she miscarried. The incest continued another year until she got pregnant again.
This time, Richy hid the pregnancy from him. She told her mother about the abuse. The abuse then ended and Richy’s stepfather was sentenced to 10 years in prison.
Richy was pressured by nearly everyone she knew, as well as strangers, to abort her baby:
I was told by friends, by some of my own family members, by several people within the court system, within the public – oh, the public – within churches, that I should “take care” of this, and not carry the baby to term because it would make it easier for me to just forget about what happened and to move on with my life.
But Richy didn’t want an abortion. She’d already lost one baby and did not want to lose another. Her mother supported her, and offered to help her raise her child. Richy had her daughter and named her Josey.
Many pro-choicers claim that a baby born from incest will be a constant reminder to the mother of the abuse, and that having such a child will only hurt her. But Richy says that her daughter saved her and helped her heal, giving her a reason to live when the trauma from the abuse was hard to deal with. She says:
[W]hen I was 13 and 14 years old and I didn’t know how to deal with it, and I was having flashbacks, I had this little bitty baby. My mom would come in and put her in my arms, and I could see this precious little face. This teeny tiny little face, because she was a tiny little thing. And it gave me hope. It gave me a reason to get up in the morning because instead of the fear and the dread that I had been living with for years, I now had this child. I looked forward to hearing her giggle and seeing her smile and [she was] a child I could work for and maybe make a better life for, someone I could watch over and make sure nothing happened to her. She gave me a purpose.
Wanting to protect baby Josey is what gave Richy the strength to defy her stepfather, speak up about the abuse, and finally be protected by her mother and the courts. The abuse ended because Richy wanted to protect her baby from her stepfather. After her daughter was born, she gave Richy a purpose and kept her from succumbing to depression and trauma from the abuse.
Richy’s experience having a child conceived in incest at age 13 flies in the face of the common pro-abortion narrative that abortion is best in such situations. She was the perfect example of a pro-abortion argument – the very person that pro-choice supporters trot out when they want to advocate for unrestricted abortion. In this case, however, the child not only saved Richy from the abuse but helped her cope afterwards.
Richy has very powerful feelings against abortion. She opposes exceptions in pro-life laws that would have allowed abortion in her own case:
When people try to use rape and incest to justify abortion, it infuriates me. I was a 13-year-old child, and I was nothing special. If I could do it, and have that child help me heal, at 13, anybody can do it. And that will help them heal.… When they claim aborting a child out of rape and incest helps the mother, I’ve had that too, and that hurts. Forever. For years afterwards. Having the child heals.
Richy loves Josey so much, she says she would endure the abuse again just to have her. Richy makes a powerful appeal to those who oppose abortion but support exceptions for rape and incest:
I would like to ask you, please, to consider the fact, that I was that poster child the pro-choice crowd likes to use. I was the 13-year-old daughter who had been raped for many, many years…. I had no money. I had no place to go. My mom had no job. We had nothing….
If you support abortion in the cases of rape and incest, please don’t. Please consider the fact that you are taking away that mother’s hope and her future. The one thing – the one beautiful, good thing – that could come out of that horrible situation.
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