Pregnant after rape, teen rejects abortion after feeling her baby kick

When Tawna Livingston* was 17 years old, she was raped. At first, she decided to have an abortion, but she changed her mind — and saved not only her son’s life, but her own.

The Daily Mail reports that she had left her home in the United Kingdom to escape an abusive childhood, only to face more violence. Livingston was walking to a friend’s house when it happened. “It was quiet and poorly lit, but it wasn’t far and I knew the area,” she said. “It felt like I was hit by a brick as, out of nowhere, a stranger lurking in the shadows rugby-tackled me to the ground. Before I knew it, I was slammed face down in the grass, paralysed. Frozen in fear and shock, I couldn’t speak, let alone move.”

She said her mind went blank and her body limp as the attack commenced. “I was fully aware of what was happening to me but my brain was in total shock,” she recalled. “All I could focus on were the sticks on the ground cutting into my face as the pain of the attack tore through me. Afterwards, the stranger simply disappeared into the night leaving me trembling on the grass. I never even saw his face.” She made her way to her friend’s house, and police arrived soon. The attack was, understandably, devastating to Livingston, who said she should have been scared, but instead felt nothing.

Livingston tried to put the attack behind her, but three months later, she realized she was pregnant, and she was devastated. “All the emotions I hadn’t felt three months earlier came rushing in and finally, I felt angry. I didn’t want his baby and I didn’t have to keep it,” she said.


“As my belly swelled with my rapist’s baby, I’d never felt so low and I sank into depression,” she said. “At my lowest moment, I vowed to have the abortion then take my own life afterwards. I just wanted everything to be over.” She was nearly six months pregnant by this time, and she had scheduled an abortion.

But something surprising saved them both. “I thought nothing could change my mind until the night before the abortion when, out of nowhere, came a tiny kick,” she told the Daily Mail. “I’d never felt anything like it before, it was like electricity coursing through my body. I felt an instant connection and suddenly I felt like I knew the baby – it was a sign.” Livingston called the abortion facility the very next morning to cancel the procedure, and immediately began preparing for the birth of her baby. “I was terrified I wasn’t going to bond with the baby or that I’d resent him for what his father did, but I didn’t have long to fret,” she said. ” I gave birth to my baby boy and when I saw [him] for the first time, it was like my life was starting over.” Her son is now four, and Livingston is married to a man who she says raises her son as his own.

READ: My son, conceived in rape, is a reminder that love is stronger than hate

She added, “He’s a perfect silver lining and, if anything, having him actually helped me to move on and get over the rape.”

Being raped is one of the worst things a woman can go through, and abortion is often described as the solution for a pregnancy that results in rape. But a woman recovering from a violent act doesn’t heal by experiencing more violence — it only hurts her further, while also punishing her innocent preborn baby for a violent act committed by someone else. Rape does not need to result in a death sentence for an innocent human being, and women deserve better than a lifetime of even more pain from abortion.

*Name changed to protect the innocent parties involved.

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