Our Lady of the Wayside

Our Lady of the Wayside
Protect Expectant Mothers and Their Babies


Thursday 27 January 2011

I'm Keeping My Baby Because I Am Getting the Help I Need

‘Annabelle’ had phoned marie stopes' abortuary on Whitfield Street, and made an appointment for an abortion. 'It’s a week from Christmas…everyone else is getting their mince pies and getting their Christmas tree ready and here I am preparing for an abortion', thought Annabelle.
Walking along the roads that led to the abortuary, Annabelle felt a profound, dark foreboding, she had that strong gut feeling that said, Don’t do this. An old friend walked alongside her, her friend had said nothing when Annabelle asked her to come with her to the abortuary. But now she turned to Annabelle and asked, ‘what’s wrong? You’re meant to be going to the clinic.’
Annabelle felt herself go leaden and heavy and almost crying, she said to her friend, ‘but I wish that I didn’t have to do it. If I just got some help instead of an abortion, I wouldn’t think of the abortion again.’
Her friend looked confused. ‘I know, but the place that we are going to only does abortions. It’s not like you can go in there and ask them to give you help with rent instead of an abortion. But I suppose we don’t have to go there…’ Annabelle imagined lying down on the cold operating table while outside people were bustling down the street with bags of Christmas presents for their children at home.
Annabelle turned the corner and as she approached the building, someone tried to speak to her and handed her a blue help leaflet. Annabelle didn’t really hear what they were saying; she was lost in her own thoughts. Her friend, who was now perplexed at bringing Annabelle to the abortuary, spoke to someone who was praying outside the clinic and said sadly, ‘If she got the help she needs, she wouldn’t have the abortion.’ Annabelle read the blue help leaflet given to her by the pray-er, and walked out of the ‘clinic’ with relief washing over her.
Annabelle has come to speak to us about her needs, and she says that her friend felt wrong that she wasn’t able to give her practical advice or financial help when raising the baby on her own. In many ways this is all too typical of the friend or family member who accompanies a girl to an abortion, the friend or family member may never have been taught the evil of abortion, and may feel powerless to help the pregnant mother. Monsignor Reilly corroborates this after spending years outside many abortion clinics all over the world, from Russia to New York to Ealing. The friend or family member is still doing something entirely immoral, but like Monsignor Reilly advises, they often know not what they do, and we must meet them with the same compassion that we meet the pregnant mother.
Like so many of the women who come after getting the blue help leaflet, Annabelle keeps the leaflet safely in her handbag and when she is describing how she left the clinic, she holds up the blue help leaflet and says, ‘I got this and I left marie stopes.’

Mary O' Regan

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