pregnancy

How can you compare a woman to a foetus and see them as equal?

ultrasound abortion 8th Amendment

Q:  How can you compare a woman to a foetus and see them as equal, especially in early pregnancy?

A: Each of us, as a vulnerable unborn child, completed the journey from conception to birth.  Most of us have seen the amazing ultrasound pictures of our own children or those of family members.

The baby’s heart starts beating at 21 days. At just six weeks, the baby’s eyes and eyelids, nose, mouth, and tongue are forming. Electrical brain activity can be detected at six or seven weeks, and by the end of the eighth week, all the baby’s organs are developing.

By ten weeks the child can make bodily movements. At 12 weeks the baby can be seen sucking its thumb and wiggling in the womb.

The amazing advances in ultrasound technology illuminate the truth that the unborn child is a human being – a human life with potential, not a potential human life.

Each human being, regardless of age, dependency, gender, disability, or circumstance, possesses a profound, inherent, equal, and irreplaceable value and dignity. If as a society we arbitrarily decide to choose which human lives are worthy or unworthy of protection in law, we diminish respect for all human life, born and unborn.

Q:  That’s all very well but isn’t a woman’s body her own, shouldn’t she be able to do with it whatever she wants?

A: The unborn child also has rights, we don’t believe that a woman has a right to end the life of the child in her womb. The Constitution should protect unborn as well as born human beings.

 

Pregnancy, pride and prejudices

teen pregnancyGrace volunteered for Love Both Project during last summer

When I was in high school, a girl a few years older than me got pregnant. The rumour mill swirled and whispers were exchanged in the hallways as she passed by, her baby bump growing everyday. She was met with little more than judgmental stares, raised eyebrows… And the knowledge that she and her baby were the subject of many conversations. Even as a member of the school’s small Pro-Life Club, I did nothing to allay the judgment of her teen pregnancy or defend her position, typically sitting quietly and uncomfortably when such conversations took place in my presence, figuring anything I offered would be ignored or shot down.

Leading the group with an eager step

Years have passed and this girl and her baby had all but slipped my mind. Recently, however, I was sitting in the car, picking up my siblings from school for the first time in years, waiting impatiently for the streams of children to pour out from the school doors so I could get on with my day.

The final school bell rang and out burst the pack, with a little girl, about 5 or 6 years, carrying her bright pink lunch back and wearing a huge smile, leading the group with an eager step. I watched in amusement as she waved to someone on the other side of the parking lot and skipped with excitement in their direction. When she reached the far side, she grabbed the hand of a person I immediately recognized. She was that same girl from school. Then the two of them started what was probably their daily, mother-daughter trek home. I found myself wiping away tears, struck with feelings of both awe and guilt.

Teen pregnancy puts pressure on us too

Unplanned or teen pregnancy put pressure on the woman involved, and on the rest of us too. The Eighth Amendment means that Ireland is a country where an unplanned pregnancy can turn to unplanned joy, the joy of a child who gives unconditional love. But women can’t do this alone. They need to know that they won’t be left to bring up their child with no help if they don’t opt for the false choice of abortion. One of the reasons I’m part of the pro-life movement is because I want to help improve the supports offered to women who are facing tough situations so that they never feel the need to end the life of their baby.

By Grace Enright

 

Discrimination in sport against pregnant woman (news from Spain)

pregnant woman sport

Blanca Manchon: Woman. Spaniard. Windsurfer. Sportswoman. Athlete. Daughter.

But also Mother.

Most people would not see this last point as an obstacle in a career path. But then again, most people are not ruthless sponsors.

After Blanca announced her pregnancy last year, her main sponsor dropped her. Others soon followed. Blanca was soon left without an income or a means to further her career and support her young son, Noah.

What’s most shocking here is not so much the sponsors’ rejection but rather the ideology that a woman, leading in her profession, is denounced for wanting to be a mother. Blanca was adamant that becoming a mother would not detract from her career. Like many other women today, she simply wanted a career and motherhood—not an unreasonable desire.

After having her baby, Blanca refused to give up on the windsurfer ranking. And now, seven months after giving birth, she has been proclaimed Champion of the Windsurfing World in the Raceboard Class—and without any sponsor! This courageous woman sailed onwards with the support of her family and friends and most importantly, her son Noah.

In an interview with the Spanish newspaper Marca, Blanca explained:

“I have had sponsorships since I was 15…and nothing like this has ever happened to me. The problem is the concept held that a sporting woman who becomes pregnant at age 29 is never again going to do anything, as if her career were finished.”

Blanca also pointed out the personal financial impact of the loss of sponsorship: I have been training seriously for four months and have spent almost 4,000 euro from my own pocket.”

For the many sportswomen at the top of their game, the mere mention of having children carries the implication that they are then unfit to compete in Sport. Pregnancy is not an illness! Sport sponsors need to realise that the way these women got into shape prenatally is how they’re likely to get back into shape after giving birth. Women must be free to become mothers without this decision overshadowing their professional careers. Mothers need support and babies need protection.

Recently, Blanca came back with new sponsors.

This is one of her last tweets: “8th in the World Cup The Chinese take the medals but I take that if you want YOU CAN! Super happy!!”

 

 

Blanca, our very best wishes for Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games—go, Girl, you can do it! #LoveBoth #proWoman