Abortion vis-a-vis single motherhood

Interesting interview in the Cornell Sun with a pro-life advocate. Says abortion has become the easy choice for young women who get pregnant–and that abortion betrays feminism.

The woman makes a really important point–women are not adequately supported by our society. Single mothers in particular must generally learn to leap tall buildings just to survive with their child(ren). Saying all single women who get pregnant should become mothers is kind of like saying abstinence-only is a good way to prevent teens from having sex. It’s plain not happening.

Our society not only pays women less but also disapproves of single mothers and denies them access to benefits that most married couples take for granted. Asking a woman to give birth to her accidentally conceived baby no matter what the circumstances is forcing her to start life with her baby with two strikes against them. It’s not surprising that abortion is often the choice. And as the African American pro-lifer–who herself had an abortion when she was young “so my child wouldn’t become a statistic”–rightly points out, nothing stays with a woman like an abortion. So let’s not pretend that it’s an “easy” choice.

Being a single woman today means you’re part of the 51% majority of women in America who are. With numbers like that, it’s time for our society to start finding a new attitude.

Raising our consciousness

Many of us aren’t aware of the subtle and insidious ways that society disapproves of us for being single. A listener shared her reaction to the SWWAN Dive interview with Dr. Karen Gail Lewis the other day. We appreciate this passionate comment from her:

“As your interview with Dr. Lewis unfolded, I kept thinking ‘right on! right on! right on!”

“I sent the interview link to several coworkers – all professional women – who are recently or soon-to-be divorced and seem to be questioning why they feel so good about not having men in their lives. Dr. Lewis had the answer to that! I also sent the link to two friends who get depressed because they haven’t found mates, and to a career coach who had related to me that “research shows women generally have a tougher time in retirement than men” so they could hear Dr. Lewis’ challenges to biased research, ages-old cultural stereotypes and fears about single women.

“Her wise statement about being choosy in dating and getting involved with a man is key. Let’s drop the denial – there are many substandard men out there, men who are indifferent to women’s needs, their dreams and passions. These men STILL think women’s lives must revolve around them. No matter what planet they come from, I don’t believe it’s our JOB as women to teach these men how to relate. It was gratifying to hear my point of view validated! Here we are forty years into “liberation” and women keep selling themselves short – stop the insanity! As Dr. Lewis said, knowing who’s appropriate to let into one’s life, not just settling for anybody is key. That’s wisdom that should be spread far and wide!

“Thanks Barbara and Dr. Lewis for the great consciousness raising session and the resources you mentioned!” ~ S.W.

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