the mudpond

It's good to let things breathe in your imagination because often your initial response to it is not the best thought-through response. I savour little glimpses of life. Mine and those of people who turn me sideways and around. Friend or stranger. Even a child. (the world looks different from down there) Sometimes an author, photographer, artist. I let things saturate and incubate here. Hopefully, deeper meanings can percolate up and flower.

Name:
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

A stray cat.

6/18/2005

Yes, Men Too

ABORTION PRODUCES ANGER. Yes, men too.

Anger at oneself for participating in the abortion. At others for putting on the pressure. At the circumstances. Or at God for permitting it to happen in the first place.

[No, this is not an anti-abortion rant. While I have my convictions and beliefs, I am not into crusades. I am however, very much into sharing resources or learning new perspectives on human responses to this tremendously difficult issue and the ethical minefields that surround it.]

Pro-choice or pro-life, I am certain we all agree on this:
An abortion is not a mysterious disappearance of a (human) life.

Almost anyone can imagine the mental pain and anguish suffered by women facing an abortion decision. And after the abortion.

I am certain too, male or female, we can also agree on this:
An unwanted (for whatever reason) pregnancy is not an immaculate conception.

Doubtless, many men not only willingly participated in the decision, they also assisted their partners in securing an abortion. Some have even pressured their partners into having an abortion. As well, there are those who watched helplessly as their precious unborn child was aborted in spite of their pleas to give their baby life. Still others weren’t told of their fatherhood until that life was already taken.

How do men feel about terminating a pregnancy they helped create? How does the loss of a child from abortion affect them?

The written and spoken word as catharsis.

Unlike the always wrenching but depressingly familiar woman’s story told in the countless narratives of magazine features, movie plots, soap operas and real life dramas playing out in the daily news, the male story is rarely, if ever told.

Enter blogs as digital catharsis. Blogs as gender equalizer.

One of the more (and truly) beneficial uses of a blog is that it can provide therapy or at least significantly clear mental cobwebs when crisis occur. Especially in life-changing episodes that often seem impossible to share with another human, face-to-face.

One of my earliest blog entries was
"That (Taken) Life”. In it, I linked a blog named A Hole In One, a chronicle of a young unmarried woman’s innermost thoughts, feelings and circumstances surrounding her decision. Juxtaposed against her compelling story, I shared a male friend’s deeply moving thoughts - two decades after the abortion he ‘participated’ in. I told of how, even today, he still feels no end to the anguish of having taken a life.

They never considered parenthood as an option. It seemed unrealistic. At only 16, neither felt the life inside her had a future. He told me that the baby’s life was not their priority. That they acted out of self-interest, first and foremost.

They were motivated by fear. Of the hard work that would come with looking after a child. Of missing out on a career. Of being robbed of their freedom. Of being an embarrassment to their families.

He also said there must have been psychological pain, but that they couldn’t understand their heads, and nobody else could know. And he told me, how in the ensuing weeks, they continued as if nothing had happened. How they never spoke about it. How it was a black cloud that always hung over them.

Last night, two decades on. Two days before Father’s Day, he told me if he had his time over again, it would be absolutely different. Religion, he says would have nothing to do with it. But being a father has shown him that a child’s life is too precious.

Today, I want to share with you three male responses to the abortion dilemma I found in Blogosphere:
* A young Malaysian blogs on his reactions to a friend’s abortion.
* A distraught young lover blogs about how he cheated on his true love. How pregnancy, abortion and guilt ensued. Guilt, for the true love and the stolen love AND the taken life.
* An ‘ethical rainstorm from hell’ was another male response to a life he helped create. He blogged about how he tried to influence her to abort their child. He felt he would lose his emotional and mental balance unless she agreed.

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY TO ALL DADS.

Happy Father’s Day to my dear friend who honored me (and readers) by sharing his private and profoundly life-changing experience.

And to those men, who through their blogs have allowed us a glimpse their innermost feelings and thoughts, that we may understand the different sides to this thorny, emotional and terribly important issue. May more male voices be heard on this.

In the
UK, where abortion is legal, Men Too receive counseling and support in the face of this life-changing situation.

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2 Comments:

Blogger benel_is_david said...

Thanks for putting up this post.

Watching an aborted baby is a gruesome sight, and if one believes in a soul, one cannot fail but agonise at the excrutiating torture inflicted on the unborn child.

Some may think I may be a bit too young to be conservative, but I don't see it as conservatism. There are some things in life worth protecting, and one of them is the sanctity of marraige and the strong willpower to hold sexual relationships as sacred to that marriage.

Some argue pro-life, other argue pro-choice. What happened to pro-virtues?

4:24 PM  
Blogger thquah said...

Abortion in all religions, it's definitely a NO,NO. But when thing do happened unwanted pregnancy then the rational thinking have to flock in.In the case of holeinone it's their circumstances they face.(age) They don't have much choices even they regreted their actions. What I can say is they should have think before having the unwanted pregnancy then the issue of abortion will not have to be deal with.
As for me I will definitely try my best to educate both my kids on protected sex.Sex before marriage is common nowadays even for teenagers.Say I am liberal,I am not...but just have to face it and think rational.

12:56 PM  

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