TW: rape, child abuse, authority abuse, suicide
At the 15’55” mark of the Childfree Girls’ latest episode “No Womb for You,” aired on Nov 3rd, I made a statement that makes me angry and sad at the same time:
“People care about the fetus, but after it’s born (…) nobody gives a fuck”
I was paraphrasing something my fellow Founding Non-Mother, Kristen Tsetsi, had said in a previous conversation we had. The meaning of this had stuck with me because I cannot understand why some human beings prefer to defend an unborn, potential human over an existing one.
I want to further illustrate my reasoning behind this statement by supporting it with a recent case.
* * *
At the beginning of 2019, an 11-year-old girl in Argentina was taken to a clinic after she experienced a severe stomachache for several days. Doctors discovered this girl was 19 weeks pregnant.
Like in most Latin American countries, abortion in Argentina is illegal. However, the law allows it in two instances: when the pregnancy has been caused by rape, or when the pregnancy poses a serious health risk for the mother.
As it turned out, this girl had been raped by her grandmother’s 65-year-old boyfriend. She later
“told the psychologist at the hospital to which she was admitted after two suicide attempts: ‘I want you to remove what the old man put inside me.’ ”
This is the point where things should have gone like this:
- Put the rapist in jail for the rest of his life.
- Perform an abortion on the pregnant girl.
- Provide support to help her get through the trauma of what she had to endure.
If we cared at all about already existing human beings, especially about a very young and innocent one, this would have been the story.
But it wasn’t.
First, the authorities in her province stalled for days, debating on who was the girl’s legal guardian. At the same time, local officials and activists were doing everything in their power to prevent the abortion. Instead of arranging for her to terminate the pregnancy while she was hospitalized, the hospital staff tried to convince the girl and her family to carry the pregnancy to term, including allowing
“anti-abortion activists to visit (her) hospital room, where they urged her to have the baby, warning that she otherwise would never get to be a mother”.
To worsen the situation, officials at the hospital gave the girl medication to accelerate the development of the fetus, in hopes that she would have to give birth to it. They told her family they were giving her vitamins.
By the time the family had taken up the issue to family court and the judge had ruled that the abortion had to be performed, she was already 23 weeks pregnant.
The health authorities instructed the local hospital to comply with the ruling, but some of the doctors refused to carry out the procedure, citing their personal beliefs.
Let that sink in… Their. Personal. Beliefs.
Finally, a couple of doctors took this case into their own hands, but when they checked her they realized that performing an abortion would be too risky for her health, so they had to perform a C-section.
The baby, the product of the rape of an 11-year old girl, was born alive.
* * *
Unfortunately, there are thousands of cases similar to this happening around the world. In some cases, the girl or woman is forced to get an illegal abortion, many of them in unsafe, unsanitary places, risking death because they want to have control of their bodies.
I honestly don’t think I need to continue supporting my argument. I think this story says it all.
Isabel Firecracker is the founder and firebrand of The Uprising Spark, a platform designed to help modern, childfree women define and reach their life goals. She is a world traveler, an avid kitesurfer, and loves dogs. Pragmatic, no-nonsense life coach and host of The Honest Uproar podcast. Childfree intersectional feminist.
This is horrible. Thank you for bringing it to my attention. Having these conversations are genuinely exhausting sometimes.