Sunday, May 31, 2009

Some thoughts

This post has been niggling in my brain for a few weeks. (not sure if niggling is really a word, but I tend to make stuff up). A few weeks ago, on two seperate occasions on the same day, I had the same conversation that is bugging me still.

Both times, I was talking to a woman about the staggering abortion rate of babies with Down syndrome. Both times, the women were Christian moms who are very pro-life and who have been very supportive of Eon. Both women expressed dismay when I told them that 90% of women terminate their pregnancies when faced with a Ds diagnosis. Both times, I thought we were on the same page...until they expressed the same sentiment that caused me to suck in a breath.

"That's terrible. I know someone who was told that her baby had Down syndrome, but it turned out to be perfectly healthy." What? Did you mean to just imply that it would be a greater tragedy if she had aborted her "perfectly healthy" baby than it is that so many babies with Down syndrome are aborted?

I know that I am super sensitive to this issue, and I am convinced that neither woman intended to express that sentiment. But, I do think that somewhere in their world view, a belief has taken hold that briefly poked out it's ugly head. The belief that much of society adheres to: "People are valuable for what they can do, versus that they just are." They would deny it, if confronted with it, and I do not think that it is a conscience thought, but it is there. Deep inside, both women believe that aborting a child with Down syndrome is less of a tragedy than aborting a child without it.

It makes me sad. I have more thoughts "niggling" but we are late to an open house.


  1. It is disturbing, isn't it? It's a similar feeling when people ask me, "Didn't you have any prenatal screenings done when you were pregnant?" Meaning, I take it, " . . . so you would have had a chance to abort." I often wonder if these people would want to terminate the lives of their healthy children if something ever happened to render them impaired in some way. I mean, they'd be less valuable human beings then, right?

  2. I have similar "niggling" thoughts. I feel angry and sad at the same time. But what to do? I recently read The Lives of Babies with Down Syndrome Are Not Worthless. And I agree with the views of the author, John Hogan.

    my blog: Bill and Ria

  3. It is awful, like Lisa said above. People constantly asked me, but didn't you know? Well, what if I did know. Nothing would have changed. I thank God I didn't know, however. A particular doctor a time ago was always warning me of my changes of have a child with DS as I got older and that I had options if the baby was DS. I told him I did not have "options." I would not have wanted to deal with that this time around. So no one was the wiser with my beautiful Gaby.

  4. Ria,
    Did you read the comments on that article?! Truly frightening!!! Reminds me of Nazi Germany!

  5. I did go back and read the comments on that article. It made me so sad and scared. Oh my gosh!! There are so many ignorant people out there! There was one commentor (chickadee) on that article that I applaud. She has a sister with Down syndrome and was standing up for her all the way! Giving all the ignorant people what for!

  6. I'm so sorry. I didn't mean to frighten anyone with that article that I shared. Please feel free to delete that comment with the article link if you see fit. :-(

  7. The termination issue has become a near obsession with me. I too have had some ignorant comments regarding the 90% rate. One lady at work said she understood why a woman would terminate cuz having a kid with DS is a lifetime commitment. Hello?!! That's kind of what you sign up for when you decide to be a parent! Grrrr.

  8. found this blog by accident tonight - love this post - you said you're 'super sensitive' - we need more mommas & daddys who are sensitive to the beauty of *life*.
    These ideas (about the value of life) *need* to be challenged because we're daily being brainwashed by a society that believes that life is disposable. Good for you for 'taking back ground'.