02 December 2009

Forced abortion or just regret?

Forced abortion or just regret?

By Nicole E. Avery GVL Columnist

An 18 year old from my hometown of Flint, Mich., has accused a local abortion doctor and his assistant of forcing her to terminate her pregnancy after she pleaded with them to stop. The girl claims she changed her mind about the procedure before it had begun but the doctor instructed the assistant to restrain her and cover her mouth before proceeding with the abortion.

In the lawsuit filed earlier this June, the teen alleges the doctor mistreated her because she was young and black.

The doctor has fired back a response claiming innocence against the teen's accusations of forcibly terminating her pregnancy insisting the procedure was already underway, the pregnancy upset by her water being broken and the patient already bleeding. To have stopped the procedure would have not saved the pregnancy and would have jeopardized the teen's health and possibly her life.

The patient by law is able to change her mind up until the medical instrument has been placed inside. After that the procedure must be completed because the damages caused can lead to death or serious health issues.

After reading both sides and looking up abortion methods, policies and procedures, it is clear to me the doctor was acting in the best interest of both patient and himself -- if it is in fact true the teen wanted to procedure to be stopped after it had already begun.

My distrust in the legitimacy of the girl's claims stems from her pulling the race card. That statement makes me not believe her. The population in Flint is majority black and being poor and from Flint is not a revelation. It is not as though he is seeing anything he hasn't seen before. Why would this doctor single out her particularly to terrorize?

Honestly what did she think was going to happen at the abortion clinic? You go there with one purpose. It's not a barbershop -- there are no walk-ins.

All of these steps -- payment, counseling provided by the clinic, consulting with the doctor on procedure and anesthesia options, setting up the appointment for the abortions as well as a follow-up appointment -- happen before the procedure takes place. There is plenty of time to deeply think about whether abortion is the right choice. Not mention there are other options besides abortion, for instance even the ancient concept of raising the children you conceive.

All too often women rush into abortion because they feel it's a quick fix to their big problem. The reality is having an abortion -- whether I believe in it or not -- is a decision you will forever have to live with. I empathize with this girl that she did not have the common sense to research abortion procedures thoroughly enough.

Just because she is overcome with regret now doesn't mean she can try and put the blame and guilt of her abortion onto the doctor she hired to complete the procedure she wanted in the first place.

If the doctor didn't follow protocol it will come out in the trial, but the bottom line is everyone has to deal with the consequences of their actions -- even teenagers.

You think you're grown up enough for sex, then you're grown up enough to deal with the complexities that come with it.


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