NRL News

“I Can Do It!: Jennifer’s Story” Part 1

by | Jun 20, 2012

By Carol Tobias
National Right to Life President

NRLC President Carol Tobias [photo credit: Elizabeth Spillman]

“I can do it!.” These are the words of an empowered woman, boldly asserting that she can accomplish what so many others say she cannot.  Other women have dared to say these words before, when it came to attending college, to voting, to leading corporations and nations.  Now, more and more women say these words again, on another defining issue of our lives.

For decades, the cultural elites have told us that we can’t be mothers and still succeed in the world.  if we get pregnant at a young age, then we should be especially grateful that in 1973, seven men on the U.S. Supreme Court gave us a “choice.” We could lie down on an abortion table and wait for a  masked man to take our “problem” away. The “problem,” of course, is our unborn child, and perhaps our bodies as well – only we are capable of nurturing new life, and this twist of biological fate, the elites suggest, makes us inferior to men.

Many of us believe that abortion was the key to our liberty. We could reject the discomfort of pregnancy, free ourselves from diaper changes and crying babies, and go make our names in the world.  We could also save everyone else we loved the trouble of learning to support us as mothers. We could save our schools, our employers, and our government a lot of effort as well. For instead of demanding a more mother-friendly society, we could get abortions. And so what we call a “choice” became an obligation. Especially if we were young, unmarried, unproven in the world, and pregnant, we were told that abortion was the only sensible thing we could do.

Take, for example, Jennifer who faced this situation when she was 15.  Her boyfriend told her he would have nothing to do with their child, and abortion would be best for them all.  Jennifer’s parents felt the same way, and so did the counselor they took her to see.  But Jennifer knew from the start that she did not want an abortion. “It seemed unnatural to be able to destroy a baby in a matter of minutes,” she said.

Jennifer continued: “My mother couldn’t understand why I didn’t want an abortion. I kept explaining that I need to make a decision I could live with. My mother mistook my concern for physical pain, but I was more concerned about the unseen pain I would have to suffer by myself a few years later whenever I would see a baby or an expectant mother. It’s been my experience that  no one wants to talk about that type of pain. It makes them uncomfortable. But that’s how I felt every time someone would recommend an abortion like it was their favorite recipe. I couldn’t live with myself knowing that I had destroyed such a big part of me. In my heart, I always knew abortion was wrong and was not the best option for my baby and me.”

The counselor told Jennifer that abortion was “the only and best solution.” In her own words, she told Jennifer that abortion was her “second chance in life.” She told Jennifer that parenthood was miserable, and that if she did not get an abortion, she would never finish school and would spent her life on welfare. But Jennifer knew better. As she observed, “I knew that in order for me to grow, I would have to accept any challenges and never back down from what I believed in. I knew that I would have to fight for the life of my unborn baby. And I was ready. I was ready to defend him at all costs.”

We’ll continue Jennifer’s story tomorrow discuss the lessons that we can all learn from her resolve to give her child life. It’s a story that plays out for women across our country every single day…and from their bravery, we can strengthen our own resolve to do everything we can to help these mothers and their babies.

Editor’s note. There is still time to register for the National Right to Life convention June 28-30 and to reserve a hotel room at the Hyatt Regency Crystal City in  Arlington, Virginia. Just go to

Categories: Abortion
Tags: abortion