How does a crisis pregnancy affect a man? I thought it was only the woman who is affected? The woman carries the pregnancy, yes, but who started the process? The man who got intimately involved with her, whether she was willing or not, placed in her the seed that gave rise to the pregnancy. Even if he isn’t around to see what happens to that seed, he is the father in absentia.
When faced with a crisis pregnancy, many people are affected in the long-term, and not just the woman who is pregnant. Whether you are a man or a woman, young or old, crisis pregnancy will affect you. And indeed you are entitled to rightfully ask – How so?!
The long-term effects of a crisis pregnancy go way past the immediate crisis at hand. When a girl discovers she is pregnant, she may be in school, or may be working and not married. She is faced with several choices: to abort; to carry to term and parent; or to give up the child for adoption and the choice she makes will affect her for the rest of her life. She could have dreams and feelings of remorse after an abortion; She could feel put upon by a baby who has possibly cost her a better future if she chooses to parent; Or she could be haunted by the unknown if she gives up her baby for adoption.
The baby as well is affected: The child dies on the spot in an abortion; some actually survive but live with physical scars and challenges their whole life; The baby could begin life in a single parent home and possibly experience lack; Or the baby may be taken to an institution to await adoption by a family willing to raise that child to adulthood, never to know their birth parents.
The father is also affected. In my experience as a counselor, several young men have come for counseling because their girlfriend was going to abort their baby against their wishes. The death of that baby threatens to haunt them. Those who choose to parent are thrust into family responsibilities before they are ready and may experience frustration and lack. Adoption in this case may not have an immediate effect unless it is done against their will. Later on however, they may get a shock when they see a child walking down the street who is a photocopy of themselves. And they may really wonder …?
I can’t stress enough the overall effect the man has in this whole situation. We see a growing number of single women raising children who grow up not understanding a father’s role in the family. When boys in such single parent families enter puberty, they could also begin a life of promiscuity if they haven’t seen a loving man who protects his woman role modeled for him, and the cycle continues. Thank the Lord for many “uncles” who have stepped into the gap for their single “sisters” and model what real love is all about for these young boys.
The extended family is also affected. Grandparents in particular are denied a grandchild in the case of abortion; They may be saddled with helping to raise the child in case of single parenting; Or they may be left wondering what happened to their grandchild who was adopted and went to live elsewhere.
The society as a whole is undeniably affected. A well-ordered, vibrant society has strong family values at the core of its healthy existence. Prison inmates who come from single-parent families far outnumber those from families with both a mother and father; People from single-parent families are more likely to have dysfunctional marital relationships, if they marry at all; Girls may grow up knowing men could take advantage of them; Boys might grow up knowing girls are there just to service their needs. The vicious cycle continues – No trust. No commitment. No family structure. No role modeling of healthy family relationships. The result – a healthy society could slowly deteriorate into anarchy because the societal fabric holding people together and accountable to one another has disintegrated.
Do we envision the broader picture when we are faced with the decision on what to do about a crisis pregnancy? Often not. We are prone to making decisions based on the immediate issue at hand and hope that is the end of it. We however do not live on an island. Every decision we make has consequences, and every action we take affects someone else besides ourselves. Sometimes, the entire community.
Think about it! I encourage you. Think about it!