Parents Want Pregnant Mentally Disabled Daughter To Have Baby -- No Matter What

Heartbreaking 102

There has been a lot of contention around the issue of abortion this election year. One of the debate points is whether a woman who has been raped or who has medical complications would be exempt from being denied an abortion in the event that the procedure ever became illegal. Even those who land squarely on the side of being pro-life will usually admit that some exemptions, such as the 11-year-old girl who became pregnant by her mother's boyfriend, should be allowed. But what happens when you've got an adult pregnant woman who cannot make her own decisions about her pregnancy -- which may or may not have been the result of a rape -- because she has the mind of a 6-year-old?

A couple in Nevada have learned that their 32-year-old daughter, who is severly developmentally disabled, is pregnant. Apparently she wandered away from the group home she was living in and no one is exactly sure how it happened, or even knows who the father is.

The couple have legal rights over their daughter's medical decisions -- and they want her to have the baby. For one, they are Catholic and say they don't believe in abortion. For two, they claim their daughter wants the baby, too. They also say they realize there are health risks involved to both mother and baby, but they (and their daughter, presumably) are okay with that.

A judge, however, may disagree. The case has been brought before a district county judge, who will hold an inquiry into the situation. The couple has filed to halt the action.

Wow, this gets pretty complicated. I understand that the parents have legal guardianship over their daughter, but in most states, as long as a person is able to answer questions and communicate, she can have input into her health care. I think it's imperative that a third party -- one who is NOT the parents -- try to assess the situation and try to find out what the woman may want, despite the parents claiming they know what she wants. The daughter, after all, may just be telling the parents what they want to hear, or may not even understand the questions being asked of her.

The parents fear the state will "force" their daughter to have an abortion. But you have to wonder if their idea of "force" is whatever goes against their own wishes. If the parents think the state shouldn't bulldoze their daughter into an abortion, neither should they bulldoze her into giving birth.

Either way, this is a terrifically complex case with no clear-cut answer. One wonders how this woman managed to stay away from her group home long enough to find herself in this predicament. Definitely a tough situation for everyone involved.

What do you think the parents are right to try and keep this out of the courts?


Image via SashaFatCat/Flickr

crime, in the news, abortion

102 Comments

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Flori... Floridamom96

1: It's none of your business. 2: It's none of my business. 3: It's nobody's business outside the girl and her parents. Mind your own business.

nonmember avatar nik

how are they to say what she can and cannot do if she is living in a group home? I understand that they have their own lives and a group home could be good for their grown daughter but if they are saying that she needs to have the baby..does that mean that their going to take care of it even though their daughter does not live with them? Very confused as to what the parents are expecting to do with the baby and who will raise the baby.
@floridamom96 : then why are you on this website in the first place? These writers are here to write about things in the world so obviously they are going to give their opinions...are you new to this world or something? Get over yourself

Caera Caera

What an awful situation. But I just can't see why a judge thinks he can decide what happens to this woman. If she's mentally incompetent, has the mind of a six year old, and her parents make all of the medical decisions for her, I feel it's pretty clear cut.


If the parents want her to have the baby, she has the baby.


 

OoOJa... OoOJanisOoO

I agree with floridamom96 if there is no suspicion of abuse the courts need to stay out it. If the woman and her parents decided on abortion and the courts were getting involved you would be writing about how the courts should stay out of it.

nonmember avatar Kim

Agree w/ Floridamom. Not my business. In fact, even contemplating it makes my brain hurt.

Alway... AlwaysExpecting

agree with floridamom96.  Unless if there is an obvious circumstance of abuse, why is it such a big deal that a mentally diasbled woman has become pregnant and instead of aborting the child chooses (or the people who are medically responsible to decide what is best for her) to carry through with the pregnancy?


This country has an uncomfortable history of eugenics as it is, what with steralizing people they deem to be unfit to procreate.....ask yourself....who really has the problem here? The parents who most likely DO have the best interest of their daughter in mind OR a governing body whose possible prejudice against a type of person (not even the individual, because they truly do not know her) may force her to carry through with an abortion simpy because they have decided that that type of person should not procreate?

Brats... Bratsmama9507

This is an awful situation. Whose to say she didn't get forced into having sex? She has the mind of a 6yr old so that right there should tell you she can't make her own decisions. The parents being her legal guardian should have the right to say what she can and cannot do! Why was she allowed to leave the group home In the fIrst place? I have 2 kids and I supervise them when they're outside. & if she has the mind of a 6yr old someone should've been with her. So regardless what happened I blame the group home. Plus I don't believe in abortions and I think it should be upto the parents. & if it happened to my daughter I would definitely makesure that the police would investigate what happened. I feel like this young woman was raped or takin advantage of..

nonmember avatar Kae

How on Earth can anyone not see this case as abuse? If the woman has the mind of a six year old, any form of sexual contact would be abuse. She was either RAPED by a stranger or RAPED by someone in her care facility. She cannot consent! This is not a matter of eugenics, this is a matter of protecting someone who obviously could not protect herself. It boggles my mind how her parents think its best that she carry the baby to term and deliver it if she can't understand what is happening to her own body.

Brats... Bratsmama9507

The courts should be wondering why the girl jus left her group home! Having a mind of a 6yr old should be supervised so if the courts must get involved they need to investigate the group home. This is real sad and serious.

Brats... Bratsmama9507

I agree *Kae.... I really feel something awful happened to her. It takes someone SICK to try or in the case have sex with someone that is special.. It upsets me about the Group home!!!

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