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Have You Donated Your Baby to Science?



Theresa Bonopartis - published on 07/24/15

This has been a difficult week for many women who have aborted...and wonder

On a recent MSNBC’s Now show, Dr. Anne Davis of the Physicians for Reproductive Health described the donation of aborted babies as a “compassionate gesture," “very generous and very altruistic.”

Her words have stayed with me for the last few days as I contemplated the all too familiar rhetoric of the extreme pro-abortion agenda, which sounds so good but still does not sit well in your gut. It seems that those who promote abortion have become masters at twisting evil into good to make women feel like what they are doing is not only acceptable, but the right and noble thing. (Such as all babies should be “wanted” babies—hence, if it is unwanted it is compassionate to kill it.)

Now, I am post-abortive myself, and have been working with women who have had abortion for over 20 years. It is no surprise that her words and the reality of what I know to be true just do not jibe, and frankly, many of us are really tired of the dance.

"Altruistic" is defined as showing a disinterested and selfless concern for the well-being of others; unselfish. Its synonyms—unselfish, selfless, compassionate, kind, public-spirited—somehow do not go with the deliberate termination of an unborn child.

Anyone who has had an abortion and is honest with themselves (and it takes a certain degree of healing for this) would admit that their abortion was anything but selfless. For most of us it was self-preserving. True, it may have been coerced, we may have been abandoned, we may have thought we were being selfless by not bringing an “unwanted” baby or one who had received an adverse diagnosis we thought would suffer into the world, but ultimately the decision was about us. Perhaps we had the abortion to save a relationship, we had been told it was not the “right time,” or because of a job, or school, or maybe financial concerns, but in the end, most times it is about serving and preserving “self.”

In no way do I mean to put all the blame on the women, or to blame anyone for that matter, but rather to understand the state of mind women are in in most cases, when they are going for an abortion.

Underneath it all, no matter what women say, they know what they are doing. They choose to believe the lies of the abortion industry because they feel they have to make this choice, which often is no choice at all. They choose to believe the lies of the abortion industry because it makes what they are about to do more tolerable and rationalizes and justifies it for them. They need this because the truth is too painful and most women who abort do not want to terminate their child.

So, here she goes, walking into the clinic: sad, conflicted, fearful, maybe angry, perhaps feeling abandoned, guilty, and filled with turmoil. She is about to participate in taking the life of her own child. Believe me, she is not skipping into Planned Parenthood, she is doing this for whatever reason she feels she has to do.

Now, Dr. Davis, of the Physicians for Reproductive Health, and many others, including Planned Parenthood itself, would like us to believe that in the midst of all this, these women, on their own accord, are thinking of how great it would be to donate her child’s body parts for research.

I think not! At least not without a lot of probing and encouragement from the clinic. I can just hear it now: here is a woman totally vulnerable, confused and no doubt in fear and pain. Do we really believe fetal donation is on her mind?

Now don’t get me wrong, there are circumstances, especially in abortions resulting from an adverse diagnosis, where parents may feel that if they donate their child to research perhaps someone else may not have to go through what they are going through. In fact, Dr. Davis uses this very example in the interview:

Certainly, it is the common experience of anyone who’s an abortion provider, and myself included, that when a patient is in a situation that is very difficult, and this particularly will turn up in a case where there is a rare fetal condition and they’ve decided to end the pregnancy that in a gesture that is very generous and very altruistic, they will volunteer to donate fetal tissue to help people understand how the condition developed, if there’s any way it could have been prevented to really move science forward for that particular situation. So it is a compassionate gesture, it is a very private moment where people volunteer to do this and certainly so my colleagues around the country and I are, you know, the recipients of that sort of
—in that moment with people and it’s very genuine. So, there are certainly services where people can help women do that generous thing they would like to do at that moment.

What she fails to mention is the extreme pressure put on these parents to abort, the implications that they would be horrible parents to even consider bringing the pregnancy to term, nor are they offered sound alternatives, like organizations such as Be Not Afraid or Prenatal Partners for Life that would support these parents in their grief and devastation. More than once, I have had an impulse to call doctors who pressured these parents to abort by filling them with guilt in their already extremely difficult situation.

One of the women I worked with recently told me that none of this surprised her:

An unborn child is not wanted. An abortion is had. Disposed of in the trash. Recycling efforts are pursued. It is a purely logical progression once a child is reduced to a commodity. I specifically asked whether Tommy’s remains can be donated towards research for a cure. I was angry that it was easier for the medical profession to dispose of these children than to actively pursue cures for them. If my child had to die because of his "condition" then I wanted something good to come from it.  So on one level I can understand perfectly how a mother would find some sense of twisted comfort in donating their unwanted child to bring about a greater good. You would call it rationalization. The pure evil, in my mind, is when science creates the market for abortion in order to profit from it.

While the generosity of such an act is applauded in the abortion industry, and perhaps in segments of society, the truth is that good does not come from evil, and killing one life to profit another is not generous or compassionate. Sadly, these women learn this after the fact as the one quoted above has. The feeling of having no choice and the twisted idea of using your child’s body to benefit others somehow attempts to alleviate the guilt of what is happening ("Just don’t think too much. Listen to those clinic workers.") and make the abortion itself not only acceptable but something that brings about good for others. Of course, if your child is lost through miscarriage or died naturally it would be different because you are not responsible for his death.

The past week has been difficult for those who have experienced abortion, and with more videos on the way, the pain may continue for many. To those who have donated their aborted children, I would say, "As with abortion, recognize you are not totally culpable but have bought into the deception of those who make a profit from killing our children."

To those who have suffered from adverse diagnosis, it is so understandable that you would want your child’s life to benefit others in this most difficult and heartbreaking situation so they would not have to go through your pain. Understand your state of mind at the time. God does.

To those of you who did not sign a consent form but wonder if your child was used, and really for all of us, place your child into the arms of a God who understands what happened and loves us unconditionally in our human weaknesses. Your child is at peace in the Lord, and the desire of their heart is that you be too.

Yes, things just do not jibe, your feelings are normal, and you do not have to do the dance any longer.

Theresa Bonopartis is the director of the post-abortion healing program Lumina and co-developer of the “Entering Canaan” post abortion ministry model. 

AbortionPlanned Parenthood
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