17 year old stepdaughter wants an abortion

naenae75December 5, 2008

Hi all.

I'm new to this forum but not new to being a stepmother. I've been married to my husband for 14 years in January. We have 2 children together and my stepdaughter. I've been around since she was almost 2 and it's been rocky most of the time. This past year, however, has been fairly good. Without going into a ton of detail that would take a while to surf through, I'll try to make a long story short. Let me start by saying she has absolutely NO rules at home or should I say she had ONE.... about a month ago, maybe a little longer, she sent me a text message that she was pregnant. I was not totally shocked but it hit me differently that I figured and we began to plan how she was gonna tell her Nana and Daddy. I felt so bad not coming out and telling him but felt it was her place to tell him and she finally did a few days later. After the initial shock we began to plan her future according to the baby. She is scheduled to graduate high school early this month and planned to start college classes in January. She was upset thinking that she couldn't do it and I reassured her that she could and had to.....and asked what her mom thought as we do not have an open line of communication....and she said that she was upset but all she said was you know I never had rules for you and all I asked is that you don't get pregnant....I just thought you would make something of yourself. Well, I told her that we would make sure that she still would. So....on to last week.....we had gotten a few things for her for Christmas but I hadn't really asked her what she wanted and so I did.....she replied with, an abortion! I was floored! I did everything but yell and throw a fit. I let her know that it was wrong.....that there were other ways...that we would help and do everything for this baby as if it were our own....... I then saw soooo much of her mother in her...it was so different than she normally is. We have BEGGED and pleaded with her, until today which is the day that she is scheduled for it....no one in our family has spoken to her. She is not at school so we know that she at least is there.....whether she goes through with it or not, I don't know. I have a STRONG feeling that she will. My problem now is, how do I still deal with her having VERY hard feelings against her. I don't want to......I just can't help it. I feel so bad about feeling this way because I love my husband soooo much.


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Forgive me for wondering if this post is real.But a 17 year old legally cannot have an abortion by themselves.A parent must be present to sign for them.

Further more,this is a very hot topic and abortion opens a huge can of worms as most people see it as a "moral" issue.

Personally,I'am pro-choice.I'm not going to defend that choice here on this forum to any of you because I DONT HAVE TO.
I honestly think if your step daughter truely isnt ready to be a parent,then an abortion IS the best thing for her to do IF THAT'S WHAT SHE WANTS.You CANNOT force her to raise a child she isnt ready to have.

Perhaps the one thing your asked of her which was not to get pregnant should have been followed up with you making sure she had access to birth control!

    Bookmark   December 5, 2008 at 3:19PM
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It is her body and her choice... and as a parent, unconditional love could be the way to "deal" with her. If she has gone through with this, then there isn't anything anyone can do except to encourage her to get some counseling for the inevitable guilt and to make certain this doesn't become a way of birth control for her. She will need all the love you and her father can give her I think.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2008 at 3:26PM
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Dear I love exercise -- it depends on the state

    Bookmark   December 5, 2008 at 3:39PM
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Perhaps the one thing your asked of her which was not to get pregnant should have been followed up with you making sure she had access to birth control!

This wasn't our rule, please reread.....this was at her mom's house. Our home has rules. Many of them are typical, you don't date til your 16, you DO have a curfew, there are no boys allowed to spend the night.....no drinking....you know, the average parents rules.

Thanks for to the ones that tried. And btw, you do have to have a legal guardian to sign. That would be her mom.

I am pro choice......to a certain extend. She was excited after the shock wore off. We planned and then her bf's parents took his truck away and started the forcing. I didn't put a lot of detail in there cuz that's not what I was asking about but now maybe it helps explain our feelings. We were excited with her after the shock wore off. We went shopping....looked at baby clothes, bought bigger clothes to grow into. Then the pressure for the abortion started. We were in the middle of looking for her new car. We bought her a sports car last year and it's just not safe for a baby, my husband said so we were looking into a Camry. We already talked about what the baby was gonna call us. She started getting sick and was admitted to the hospital and had her first ultrasound. When she looked at that picture she was so excited. I was there....not her mom. ME..... I saw that look. Then for her to say 2 weeks later that she wanted an abortion....it was a huge slap in the face.....

I see that this is really not the place for me to ask questions......I'm sorry.....

    Bookmark   December 5, 2008 at 4:01PM
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Dear kkny-- thank you for sharing,that is certainly news to me.
I was always under the impression that some states didnt even offer abortions but that all states required you at least be 18 to get one.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2008 at 4:03PM
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I apologize.

Certainly after you've explained it more and how you looked at baby clothes and thought about what the baby would call you and stuff changes things.I can understand your disapointment.
Do you have any idea what changed your SD's mind about having the baby???

    Bookmark   December 5, 2008 at 4:08PM
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I think if you need advice or insight on what to do about the stepfamily side of this issue, we're your bunch...
But if it's more the trying to figure out what's going on in the head of a pregnant teenager, we might not be your best crew.

IMO, she needs to decide what she wants - not what her mom wants, you want, her BF wants, her BF's mom wants, her friends want, and so on. She is the one who has to deal with her choice for the rest of her life.
Has she seen a family counselor specializing in teen parents, or a teen counselor specializing in pregnancy? Seeing a counselor (who is not affiliated with any religious group or pro-life group) might help her decide what SHE wants to do without worrying about what everyone else thinks she should do.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2008 at 4:09PM
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I'm not up to date on abortion laws in every state, but I have been under the impression that you don't need a parent's permission to get an abortion. I had my son when I was 17 and when I needed any medical care related to my pregnancy, I did not need a parent's consent. Of course, that was 22 years ago and if I had wanted an abortion, I would not have needed consent.

However, regardless of the laws... I agree that she should not have a child she doesn't want to raise. There are many of us raising kids that the parent(s) apparently don't want to raise or take care of and there are too many unwanted kids. I also agree that birth control should have been used/provided but what's done is done. My personal opinion is that when you make your bed, you lie in it. But, then only if you are truly going to lie in it. I had my kids way too young but I devoted myself to be a mom to them & have always done my best as their mom and to sacrifice. (ie. giving up partying when I was a young adult, nightclubbing, and to a great extent, I gave up my social life...) If your stepdaughter isn't ready to devote her life to a baby, then she shouldn't have to have one because you or your husband think it's wrong.

If what you say is true, I feel sorry for this girl that is having to go through this alone. I imagine how hard it must be to, not only be alone, but to have people fighting the urge to be angry at her. Where is her loving supportive dad that should comfort her? He doesn't have to approve of what she did or what she is doing, but she should know his love is unconditional.

And BTW, I am pro life. My beliefs and what happens in the real world are two different things. In my perfect world, people would always do the right thing... not have kids when they can't take care of them, not have kids when they don't want them and they would take responsibility for what they do. That doesn't always happen and I am realistic enough to know that while I don't agree with abortion, sometimes it's better than bringing a child into a life they will only suffer in.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2008 at 4:10PM
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First off -- I also have to wonder if this post is for real. It just doesn't seem like the kind of thing you'd join some brand new forum to post about. But assuming that it is:

StepDaughter had a very few options:

1 - Have an abortion and deal with the relief/guilt and family fallout as best she can,
2 - Raise a child she does not want and is not ready for, sacrificing her own well-being and that of the child for the rest of both their lives,
3 - Give the child up for adoption and deal with the emotional and physical fallout of a full pregnancy and 'How could you?' recriminations,
4 - Muddle around in some hybrid of #2 and #3, where she still has a baby she doesn't want but lets her parents do most of the work. For some reason, lots of people seem to think this will work, but it almost never seems to beyond 1-2 years, and requires the mother to short-change her education and virtually eliminate her social life anyway.

Naenae, if it's a done deal, your only choice is to accept it yourself, and help her cope with it without adding your own disaproval into the mix. She needs to make her own choice. And unless she was fully grown and fully-educated, the decision she made may very well be the best one for her.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2008 at 4:13PM
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it is her body and her baby. no matter how much baby clothes you bought it is not your place to decide what to do with the baby. "slap in the face?" why? is that your baby? why her decisions are slaps in your face? it is not like it is your baby or your body. it sounds like you want to be in control and you already planned everything what everybody is going to do. .

    Bookmark   December 5, 2008 at 4:27PM
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OK - Didn't see your second post.

So if SD was pressured by her mother and the BF's parents to have an abortion she didn't want, she'll need your compassion more than ever. And frankly, I can't see how you could offer her anything else. I can understand how you'd be disappointed that she didn't stand up for herself and for her baby - assuming she really did want to keep it. After all, she only had to say "I want to keep my baby" and I can't imagine how ANY doctor in the U.S. would have performed the surgery. But if she couldn't stand up to Mom, having to now deal with SM's scorn absolutely puts her between a rock and a hard place and virtually guarantees a complete psychological disaster.

But there's the other possibility to consider as well --
That your own enthusiasm (new car, new clothes, baby names!) caused her to get 'stars in her eyes' romantic illusions about what her future life as an unwed, under-educated teen mom would most likely be like.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2008 at 4:29PM
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I went through a training program to become a counselor for our Crisis Pregnancy Center. I am a strong believer against abortion unless the mother's life is in danger. In my state minors are not allowed to receive pain meds at school from the nurse without parental consent but they can get an abortion.....Having stated my opinion on abortion I would urge you to be as loving and as kind as you can be if your SD has had the abortion. She is very young and obviously from what you posted has been bombarded with pressure from all sides. My heart goes out to her. If she has aborted her baby she will live with this choice for the rest of her life and although she may be able to go forward and do things as though nothing has changed in her life she will never be free from this. I know woman in there 50's that are just now dealing the choice they made to abort their child when they were much younger.

If your SD has not had the procedure I would urge you to see if you have a crisis pregnancy center in your area or in a city close by. They will present the honest truth about abortion to her, the options available to her such as raising the child on her own or placing the child for adoption. Should she choose to have the child they will help her with many things. Should she choose not to have the child they will be there to help her later.

I am so sorry for all concerned. It is an issue that ignites great passion within me. Had I become pregnant at an early age I very well may have ended the pregnancy. Most of my friends have had one or more. None without great sorrow. Again, I urge you to put your personal feelings aside and love this young girl though this. She will need it.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2008 at 5:06PM
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So, you were excited. So what. The decision was not yours. If you want everyone on the planet to conform to your beliefs, I think mars is available. She likely got an abortion today, and you want to judge her over it so badly that you can't imagine ever dealing with her again and you want yet another fatherless child to come into the world, which will complicate the mother's life and all her plans. I guess if your money could buy this one too neither of you would have a problem, but money and merchandise cannot make it go away. Some people need to get over themselves.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2008 at 7:18PM
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I think you need to look at this issue not as a stepfamily issue, but as an issue regarding a child in crisis.

I understand how you feel about abortion and I completely respect your views. You have the right to feel what you feel and I can only imagine how devastating it must be for your SD to potentially have had an abortion.

If she were your bio-child--how would you handle this? Would you be angry, hurt, disappointed, sad, etc? Of course.

But I think you would still show your child compassion and love, which is really what your SD needs NOW more than ever.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2008 at 9:39PM
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During my training to become a counselor for our crisis pregnancy center the instruction said that she wanted to ask us all a question. If we where to find out that day, in our current life situation, our current age, our current health situation and so on that we were pregnant what would we think. What would we do. I was quite taken with this question. I didn't want a baby, I didn't feel that my health would allow me to take care of a baby, since I would not have an abortion my other choice would have been to have the baby and place it for adoption. My husband would have wanted to keep the baby. This little exercise opened up my eyes as to how much turmoil these young woman are feeling.

I agree with all of those who have said in one way or another that the issue is to love your SD through her choice and put your personal feelings aside. I understand that you will grieve. I would be devastated myself but the person in need of the most compassion and unconditional love is a 17 year old girl. Mourn your loss privately and be kind and gentle with your SD. She will have to face this sooner or later and it will be painful for her. Please don't add any more to what she is already going through. If she chose to end this pregnancy she did so feeling like she had no other choice. You may see it differently but she did not.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2008 at 4:10AM
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My heart goes out to all of you.

I am pro-choice, but I have great respect for people who oppose abortion because they truly believe it is murder.
Perhaps that is how the OP feels, and I certainly do not mean to tell her she shouldn't.

So I can understand why her stepdaughter's choice is so upsetting to her, except for the remark that the girl's decision "was a huge slap in the face." That concerns me, because it sounds like the OP is seeing this as all about HER -- whether as a rejection of her advice/opinion, denying her a step-grandchild, or something else -- not about her stepdaughter or even the baby.

I agree with those posters who said that the right thing to do here is to support that poor girl with whatever choice she makes (or has already made). She has enough to deal with without more pressure or guilt.

    Bookmark   December 8, 2008 at 3:07PM
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