Can you imagine the feeling of being told that you don’t get a choice in whether or not your son or daughter gets to live? This can be how it feels from a man’s viewpoint on abortion.
Being one of the major cornerstones of women’s health issues, abortion has become a common topic in the political, social, and religious spheres. Debates on how women should feel about abortion and what actions they should take are hot topics. Many politicians, activists, and women from all sides of this debate have loudly voiced their opinions. However, one important viewpoint is continually thrown to the side. That is the father of the child. His voice is lost and written off as irrelevant.
When the decision to continue a pregnancy or pursue an abortion comes up, the man’s perspective and opinion are often completely disregarded or viewed as less important than the woman’s opinion. In fact, for many men who have gone through the process of choosing whether or not to abort their baby, they weren’t given any say at all.
Despite popular belief that young men are not interested in raising their child and would typically lean toward having their girlfriend get an abortion, many of us feel several different emotions towards the situation. Primarily, there are two different thought processes that we go through when we encounter this situation.
The first and most common reaction is apathy. When we, as men, are hit by the emotional wave of learning that our partner is pregnant, we can feel completely overwhelmed and, as a result, choose to mentally and sometimes even physically retreat from the situation. We cannot process emotions at the rate that women are able to, and it can take us a while to figure out how we feel about a situation. When we retreat, we are subconsciously processing and figuring out how to solve the situation. It’s just in our nature!
Unfortunately, many people quickly assume that the answer men are seeking is an abortion. As a result, when we come back to the situation, we are quickly turned away by our girlfriends because of our initial reaction to the situation. This can cause us to further isolate and move away from the situation, despite what we actually want the outcome to be.
The second reaction is to immediately rise to the occasion. A man’s instincts are to be a father and to meet challenges head-on. When an unexpected pregnancy occurs, many of us are ready to take on the responsibility that comes as a result of our previous decisions. For many men, this process may take a little while to occur because we need time to feel and understand our emotions. Once we have calmed down, we are ready to step up and be a father. If the girlfriend is in agreement, then an abortion can be taken off the table. However, in these situations, men are often cast to the side and left out completely from the decision-making process despite our readiness to step up.
Society has created a narrative that there are two options, the woman’s opinion, and the man’s lesser opinion. If the man thinks differently on the subject than his female counterpart, he is quickly disregarded because “it’s not his body.” In these emotionally taxing situations, our partner’s reaction is that we shouldn’t get a say in what happens to the baby because we’re not the ones carrying it. The problem with this thought process is that there are more than two people now. There is now a man, a woman, and a baby involved. Because of one decision, there is now a third member who would definitely choose the side that is fighting for them to live.
For us, the process of deciding whether or not to abort a baby isn’t a decision we feel empowered to make. Society tells women it is their body and their choice. However, that is not the full truth. Yes, it is their body, but it is our child that they are carrying, so we should get a say in the decision.
The good news is that there is confidential advice available to young men who don’t know what to do when it comes to making a decision about an abortion. At our clinic, we have male team members who are ready to listen and share their life experiences with you during this challenging season, as well as coaching during the pregnancy and through fatherhood if you decide to choose life.
For confidential advice on your pregnancy, Turning Point is ready to help! Contact us today to schedule with us at no cost. We are here to listen to both the woman’s and the man’s viewpoint on abortion.
Thank you for reading the Turning Point blog, and we hope this message helps shine a light on the challenges you are facing during an unexpected pregnancy.