The Difficult Cloudy Middle of Abortion

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9 Responses

  1. Avatar Bob Cheeks says:

    Dr. Summers,
    It is good that you refuse to see women who abort their children ‘elided’ from the conversation. One aspect of your conversation (above) was that the ‘thing’ being aborted was not identified. Is it a fetus, tissue mass, baby, what?
    Once we’ve identified the ‘thing’ being aborted we can have a real conversation. And, I do appreciate your post.Report

  2. Avatar matoko_chan says:

    If turnips were watches you’d wear a bunch by your side.Report

  3. Avatar Sara says:

    I don’t think it’s fair to use the “you’re a man so you don’t know” argument, but at the same time, it seems men sometimes don’t understand how women think about pregnancy. From the time a woman learns how babies are made, and about preventing them from being made, they think about what decision they would make when faced with a pregnancy.

    I was 13, many, many years before I ever had sex, or even seriously thought about having sex, and had conversations with my friends about whether or not we would ever have an abortion. By the time a girl ends up in your doctor’s office, she has literally years of pondering about pregnancy behind her. By the time she suspects she is pregnant, she has already thought about what her most likely course of action would be *if* she got pregnant at that point in her life. She doesn’t need a strange doctor to counsel her through her options, because the teenage years of talking with her friends on the phone means she’s already debated these issues.

    While there are plenty of women who don’t have “heart-wrenching” decisions about abortion, it’s unfair to imply that they are thoughtless or “blithe” about it, because most women have debated it with themselves extensively, well before it was anything other than a hypothetical.Report

  4. Avatar Dan Summers says:

    Bob, I would opt for “fetus,” but would hardly consider my characterization definitive.

    And Sara, while I will certainly admit the possibility that the young women whose decisions I described above had been through the extensive internal debating that you posit, I respectfully aver that my experience bespeaks a distinct blitheness in some cases.Report

  5. Avatar Bob Cheeks says:

    Dr. Summers,
    Thank you for your reply. I know how sensitive the ‘abortion’ discussion can be.
    ‘Fetus,’ the dictionary tells me is “..the unborn young from the end of the eighth week to the moment of birth as distinguished from the earlier embryo.” In your opinion, as a doctor, is this a human being?
    If, you have no desire to continue this discussion, I do understand. I’m not trying to be cute or to embarrass anyone. I am curious, and please keep in mind that the pro-abortion people have won the debate.Report

  6. Avatar Dan Summers says:

    Bob, thank you for your courteous understanding. I would prefer to to tackle that very weighty question in the venue of a commentary thread.Report

  7. Avatar Bob Cheeks says:

    I look forward to the posting.Report