Guest Author - Suzanne Gregory
This heartbreaking story of a family trying to force a teen to have an abortion, may end up with a happy ending. This girl found the help she needed, before it was too late.
The 14 year old high school freshman, from Corpus Christi Texas, lives with her adult cousins. She alleges that her cousins hit her, prevented her from going to school, and threatened her repeatedly, if she didnít go through with having an abortion.
The young girl also alleges that her cousins and grandmother scheduled an appointment at the Coastal Birth Control Center to terminate the pregnancy against her will. The girl's grandmother, Carmen Pantoja, denies the allegations against her family. Pantoja says she suggested an abortion, but never tried to force her to have one.
"I advised her to have it. That's not the same as forcing her," Pantoja said, "If I had forced her, I would have paid for it and I didn't pay for nothing. Nobody forced her do anything."
The teenager's attorney, Stephen Casey, says this case is about protecting the young girl's reproductive rights.
Casey is part of the Texas Center for the Defense of Life, a pro life group of attorneys. While I myself wish there were more choice groups involved in helping with these kinds of cases, I am just happy there are any at all.
The girl in this latest case contacted the group via text message without her families knowledge, when she was seven weeks pregnant. Now at 10 weeks pregnant, she is living with the family of the father of her unborn child.
Both of the parents of the baby agree the pregnancy should be brought to term. Adoption is still a possible consideration.
State District Judge Missy Medary has appointed a guardian for the teen and granted two temporary injunctions protecting the girl from family members who might coerce or force her in her reproductive decisions, until a Jan. 19 hearing. At the next hearing, the judge will decide whether to extend that injunction through the rest of the teen's pregnancy.
The childís grandmother says she has accepted her granddaughter's decision to keep the child. "She's going to have her baby," Pantoja said. "It's ok."
Forced abortion happens much more than it is reported. Forced and coerced abortion is not a choice made by the woman with the right. It is made for her, and has devastating, life altering ramifications. I know because it happened to me.