April 02, 2008

"PUNISHED"

I considered writing about Obama and his "I donít want them punished with a baby" comment. Then I considered not writing about it because I am weary of thinking about other people having unwanted babies. But I will just say a couple of things.

As much as I want a baby now, that's how much I did not want a baby previously. I can't say that I would've used the word "punished," but I would not have been happy if I had gotten pregnant before I was ready. Not happy.

Right before my husband left for Iraq the last time, he was out on a training exercise for a month. During that time, my grandmother died. I was stressed with his upcoming deployment and being half a world away while my mother was losing her only living parent. And I was ten days late for my period. Even though my husband was in the field and there was no possible way I could've been pregnant, I was freaked out. I did not want a baby. I had been married for a year and a half, we had the same good relationship that we have now, and yet I did not want to have a baby yet. Not at all. I know we would've gone on to be OK with it and been a great family, but still I'm glad I wasn't pregnant back then. Even knowing what I know now -- how hard it's been to start a family -- I still can't honestly say I would've wanted it to happen four years ago.

Much less before I was married. No freaking way.

So that's my thoughts on that. I don't think "punished" was the right word to use, but I completely understand Obama's idea that a baby isn't always a blessed miracle. And while today it is really hard for me to think about all the unwanted babies in the world when we want one so badly, I still can't say I think it's appropriate to saddle young girls with a baby they don't want. Having to have a baby you don't want is the flip side of the coin to not being able to have a baby you desperately want. I wish no one ever had to live through either scenario.

Rachel Lucas has more thoughts on the matter: Reality always trumps idealism.

Posted by Sarah at April 2, 2008 08:39 AM | TrackBack
Comments

The feminist of the 60's and 70's have really done a number on us. Making us think we aren't responsible for our actions, even actions that create life. By the time that baby is in your belly you've already made your choice. Now you have to deal with it. Married, not married, young, old, everyone knows how babies are made if its that important to you to not have one then don't have sex. I'm not all about waiting for marriage but as women, we are the safe guards of our bodies and its ability to sustain and bring new life into this world. If that power were taken seriously there would be no need for roe v. wade, and 16 year old girls wouldn't be in these situations. A baby is ALWAYS a miracle whether it is seen as one or not by the people whos selfishness brought it into this world.

Posted by: g at April 2, 2008 07:29 PM

... I have mixed feelings about this issue and don't have a clear position. But that's not what I want to talk about - having babies vs. not having babies.

I would like to chew on the idea that women are the "safeguards" of their bodies...

As much as I want to believe this, I know and have seen otherwise.

In a perfect world a woman (and a man) CAN expect to safeguard their body and know that no one would violate that. That the word "no" is heard and respected.

As long as sex is used for more than procreation and an expression of passion, affection and love, and is also used as a tool of violence... I'm not sure it's fair to say women are responsible for safeguarding their bodies. Because then if their bodies are violated, are we saying it's their fault?

I realize this isn't on topic, and yet the issue of a woman's body being hers and hers to decide what to do with (child bearing including) is often intertwined with the violence that has been done against women as a way to say her body is not hers.

Posted by: Crys at April 2, 2008 07:55 PM

My thoughts don't apply to women who are violated and have violence done toward them. That is another topic all together. I am talking about women who choose to engage in sexual intercourse.
Of course a woman has the right to decide whether or not she wants children. Only she can determine if she is in the right place in her life, the right relationship, and if its the right time. I just feel like the time to decide these things is well before a baby is growing inside of you. I mean "safeguard", not in a prudish, holding tightly onto one's virginity way, but rather in a self respecting way. Having a deep understanding of your body and the power it holds. To take all matters of birth control into your own hands, knowing full well that if a pregnancy occurs you will be bearing the brunt, especially if its with a man you doesn't care about you or the impending child. But hopefully a smart gal wouldn't have sex with a man like that.

I have so much to say on this subject I can't put it into words that really convey my feelings adequately. I just think women need to take more responsibility well before they are faced with the decision of "do I want to keep it".

I recently had a baby, and the whole thing still blows me away. To think that this perfect whole human being with a heart and a brain and a soul, did not exist before two people had sex. That's all it took to create LIFE. This post just struck a nerve with me. Sure no one should be "saddled" with a baby, but I don't think people should be able to take an innocent life either. A life that wouldn't exist if not for their actions.

Posted by: g at April 2, 2008 11:07 PM