Today is my first day on vacation and I was troubled with the news a young friend of mine brought to my attention at 11.00pm Nigerian Time, 1 week ago. I was quickly alerted because prior to this said date I have not heard from her for about 3 months.
My troubles came as a result of an internal turmoil from indecisiveness to maintain a stand on the issue of abortion………………….
After my young friend revealed, she was pregnant for a close friend of mine, who denied out rightly the responsibility of the child. I became angry, not with the two of them, but with my inability to come to a resolve on such issue; am I for abortion or not? Is it as easy as that, just to fall on one side of the divide or worst of all to be on the grey side of taking a stand and say things like it depends on the situation? I am a strong proponent of sticking to a principle until a higher principle causes me to re-think such principle but abortion always seems to throw me off.
Steven Covey’s book, “The 8th Habit” pointed out that the three constant elements in life are choice, change and principle but I am not comfortable with the element “principle” because I strongly believe it changes in perspective over a period of time. I have been a sticker for “sowing and reaping”, “friendliness breeds more friends”, “a reader is a leader”, etc but when it comes to issues like “sex before marriage” and “abortion when you are not prepared” poses a challenge to me because of the pros and cons of either stands you decided to take. This becomes frustrating to me when I asked my young friend what she wanted to do about the situation, she did not hesitate to say she wanted an abortion giving reasons like she was in school and she was not particularly in love with my close friend. I bided time for a favorable response by telling her to call me back.
Its one week today and I am still indecisive. I decided to take a feminine perspective by asking my wife; my dear, was I surprised by my wife’s legalistic stand of “abortion was wrong except it endangers the ladies health”. Believe me, I was seeing my wife in a new way as she strongly opposed the prospect of abortion with series of evidences and stories; my wife has always been endearing to people and less principled on human issues but on abortion, her stand was forthright-no to abortion.
This caused me to take a long walk on a Monday morning, ruminating on the issue. After about 5 kilometers of my walk, I remembered a story by my mentor, Deolu Akinyemi, during a bible study meeting in my undergraduate days, which caused me to re-think on my stand of “no to abortion”;
A guy staying in Nigeria, who immediately after getting married was sent on training in the US, for six month without taking his wife. On the night of arrival, before sleeping with his wife, armed robbers attacked his house and raped his wife. This ghastly incident resulted to a post traumatic syndrome and eventually made the wife pregnant. I believe you can imagine the crisis this would cause in this couple’s home; what would you do in such situation. Let’s analyze the three choices that are open to this couple.
1. They keep the baby and the child becomes a constant reminder of the unfortunate night. The child will always cause a strain in the relationship especially to the man. Can you imagine the child 24 years after, asking the mother who is father is?
2. They go through the gestation period and eventually give up the baby to the motherless home or put it up for adoption. This looks good considering other options but a deeper look at this option, makes you think of the child, 24 years after, accusing the mom of abandoning him/her and bringing back unpleasant memories especially when the child asks for his fathers where about.
3. The easy way out may seem to just abort the baby but this also brings constant guilt to the mom and has its’ dangers include deeply emotional damage, physical damage to the uterus and death of the woman.
I am sure you must be overwhelmed with indecision by now, but not to worry because the consequences of aborting a physical child is not 0.5% as worse as aborting an inspired idea; this we do constantly without feeling any guilt. An aborted child ends the life of maximum six children at a go but an aborted inspired idea ends the life of billions of people. I will expand on this in my subsequent post………………………………