It would seem impossible to make a rape worse. But a doctor in India seems to have gone and done it anyway. He is accused of aborting a rape victim's baby without her consent.
Instead he took the word of her boyfriend, the guy who is now being accused of actually raping her over a period of time. Head spinning yet? Let this be a lesson to the people who think men should have some say in whether or not a fetus they have created is aborted. Because situations like these just heap additional trauma on victims of domestic violence.
It works both ways, actually. If a man were to be given the right to say "no, she can't have an abortion," a rapist is being given additional power to torture his victim for an additional nine months. Each time the baby kicks, he is exerting his undue influence.
Then flip it over. A woman gets pregnant by her abuser and doesn't believe in abortion. The man makes the decision that he doesn't want the baby. He OKs the abortion, and for the rest of her life, she is forced to live with having had an abortion, against her will, against her beliefs.
Yes, the baby is his genetic material. But once he places it in another woman's body -- by rape or otherwise -- he cedes control to that person. It's biology. And while I've heard arguments that it isn't fair, because men don't have the ability to carry a baby, there's the flip side. It's equally unfair to a woman that she has to be the one to carry the baby. I'd have given up the pain and suffering willingly, but I couldn't.
Of course, I wasn't a rape victim. I was a happily married woman who got pregnant on purpose. And unlike so many moms who have said it made them waiver in their "right to choose" beliefs, it made me that much more ardently pro-choice because I could not imagine going through those nine months if I hadn't chosen it, if the baby in my belly belonged to anyone other than my husband.
But the marker of a domestic violence victim is a person (it can be a man) who already feels dominated, who has already given up on having control of her (or his) own life. Control of the womb is perhaps the last bastion of a woman's right to her own body. It's her baby now, her choice.
Have you ever thought men should get a say in abortion? How do you feel now?
Image via ulybug/Flickr