It isn’t easy being a passionate man who wants to be a father, it is even more challenging when that opportunity is snuffed out by a “woman’s choice.”
Before I begin my experience in dealing with such a tragic subject, I will begin with a story. Abraham was promised a son with his wife Sarah, and the covenant God established with him was that his descendants would outnumber the stars.
That was a huge promise, one that both Abraham and Sarah had a hard time believing. So Sarah gave him her handmaiden, a woman from Egypt named Hagar. Hagar birthed him a son whom he named Ishmael, and despite Abraham’s unbelief, God still made Ishmael the father of 12 princes and a great nation (see Gen. 16-17).
We Are All Born with an Innate Desire for Our Own Children
God has used births to establish covenants and nations since the beginning of time. He introduced the idea of being fruitful and multiplying with the intention of filling the earth. The interesting thing is that we are all born with an innate desire to have children, whether we choose to deny that later in life is another thing altogether. But it was one of the earliest commands given to man since the beginning.
I remember as a child growing up without a father and always wondering what it would be like if I had one. I would go to slumber parties at what seemed like normal homes. I slept over at best friends’ homes where they had dinner around a table as a family. Like a whole family. Mom, dad, kids, sometimes even grandparents, all around a table.
Not to say I didn’t sit at a table with my mom and sister. My mother tried to make my childhood as balanced as she could, and she really did her best. But I always wondered what it was like to have a father, as my biological father didn’t have much to do with me as a child. I had set out, and I was determined when I had children that I would be the best father I could imagine a father being. I found men whom I looked up to and loved as if they were my own dad, but of course it was never the same.
I became a Christian at the age of sixteen, and the first few years of my faith was like a roller coaster. I graduated High School in 1998, and like any teenager I thought I knew it all, that I was invincible, and that nothing would dampen my passion for Christ.
Oh how I was wrong!
It All Started On The Internet
The internet was still very much in its infancy in the nineties, and being a shy kid I turned to online chat rooms to find “the one.” Pathetic, I know. But I met a girl that I thought was the one, let’s call her Shannon. She lived in Florida, and I lived in Charlotte, North Carolina. She seemed like she had it all together, and I was pretty enamored with her from the onset. After about a year and a half I made plans to move to Florida and then I moved to be closer in January of 2000.
I would love to say that our relationship was pure, I would really love to say that we waited, but we didn’t. I lost my virginity to her, and the next few weeks were both exciting and grueling. I struggled with the sin of being with her, and I really tried to rationalize it by telling myself we were going to get married anyway. Valentine’s Day rolled around and the revelation came that she had been unfaithful to me. I was devastated.
I was in a foreign land, I had no family, no money and was without the reason I had moved there in the first place. I moved in with a guy that I found through a roommate and unexpectedly received a call from Shannon several months after we had parted ways. She said she had something of mine, and needed something from me. Forgive my recounting of this as it was over 16 years ago.
The News That Changed My Life Forever
She met me at the Cracker Barrel that was near my apartment. I was hopeful at the time that maybe we would rekindle our relationship, but that was not the reason she requested a meeting. While we met, she made a cryptic comment about how she had no money because she had to deal with something I had caused. She didn’t offer any more information, and I didn’t ask because I was under the impression it had something to do with my moving out of her grandmother’s place where I initially stayed. I really had no idea what she was talking about until later.
Come to find out she had gotten an abortion, without my knowledge or consent. I don’t know how far along she was, or even if the information was all that accurate. Of course I was too emotional to ask her about it, so I have lived under a massive cloud of guilt and anger about what happened.
I’m Not Sure I’ll Ever Get to Be a Father
You see this is truly where this article begins. I want to be a father, but at this point I am not even sure if it will ever happen. I believe that God told me that I will be a father and I can share the evidence of that. But that isn’t what this post is about.
I have struggled with decisions that were made without me for the last 16 years, and I am sure I will deal with the repercussions until the day that I die. My child was ripped away from me before I met him or her. I had no opportunity to raise the child, all because the baby was an inconvenience to Shannon.
In society today, the man has very little say over what happens to their unborn child. And before you say it, I know that many don’t really care. However, I would contend that there are far more that do care than there are those that don’t. In fact, I spoke to a pastor friend of mine that was involved in Crisis Pregnancy Centers who said that he had several fathers that came looking for their pregnant girlfriend or wife only to find out they had visited an abortion clinic, or left town.
As a society when a couple splits, the courts usually select the mother over the father. Even though the father might be the better parent or earn a lot of money. Courts are very reluctant to separate a child from their mother, and the evidence must be insurmountable to achieve the converse.
Steve personally asked me to share my story on his blog because the voice of men in this debate is often muted, overlooked, ignored, or downplayed. Men share 50% of the DNA and the responsibility when a child is born. There is child support for a child born if the mother and father are not together.
Thank you for letting me share my story with you.
Note from Steve
If you’re male, and if you’ve had a significant other who aborted a child she had with you, please share this article with others or feel free to post your story with others in the comments below. Nobody will judge you, and aside from anything violating our commenting policy, we’ll allow any comment that’s respectfully shared.
We feel the conversation and debate around abortion has for too long been a “woman’s rights” thing and believe the male’s voice is silenced quite often in these life-altering decisions. Not all men abandon the woman or fail to take responsibility when they find out their girlfriend is pregnant. Many would have loved to take responsibility to provide and be a father, but were not included in the decision because “the woman carries the child in the womb” or “it’s mostly the mother who raises babies in these cases” and “we don’t know what pregnancy is like on the body” and other such ideas. I felt James’ story helps with discussions on this issue.
Thanks for reading.