I am currently addicted to Kristi Gustafson’s Serial over in her TU Blog.

For the link-phobic, it’s essentially the (allegedly true) story of a woman and a man who dated for about three months, broke up, and then the woman learned she was pregnant. The woman has decided to have the baby, and the guy is acting a bit toolish. Of course, we’re only getting one side of it (hers), and there are some subtle hints that there may be more to the story. Regardless, there’s now a third person involved, and this 30-year-old is acting like a teenager – i.e., more worried about how he’s going to break the news to the new girlfriend than he is the fact that his OLD girlfriend is carrying his child.

However, it’s not the story I find interesting, but the comments. One in particular is triggering this particular post:

I need to grow up and so do you?
That might be something she needs to do, but she has no right to make that decision for Chris.

That said, again – GIANT RED FLAGS or ORANGE CAUTION CONES (which ever you respond to best) she is pregnant the child of a man who she has known for 3 months. They broke up. She now finds out he was double dipping and this is the person SHE WILL HAVE TO BE TIED TO FOR THE REST OF HER LIFE because of this ‘potential’ child.

Make a different choice Sarah.

I don’t understand why people don’t see the signs? How can you chose to ignore the obvious?

At some point, she’ll be alone, with this child and crying saying she didn’t know how her life got so messed up.

At that point, I hope she reads this or at least remembers this… the signs were all there.

And this is where I get annoyed.

As most of you who read this know, I am very much “pro-choice.” However, my stance stems more from personal rights than anything else – abortion can only be outlawed if Roe v. Wade is overturned, and the most likely argument for overturning the case is to make an argument that there is no provision of a “right to privacy” in the Constitution. This is an incredibly slippery slope, and one I find to be a much larger issue than the pro-life/pro-choice debate. This is why I won’t vote for a candidate who is pro-life, regardless of whether or not I live in a “Blue” State.

However, I’m also Catholic. And while I really can’t say for sure what decision I would make if I had to make the decision (really, how many women can say that they truly know?), I respect the fact that many people think abortion is morally wrong, and that if they get pregnant, they will have the child, and they will love the child and treat it as a blessing. I realize the latter is not always what happens – in fact, it’s quite often it doesn’t, which is terribly sad – however, for ME, being pro-choice is about bringing children into the world who are wanted and loved. And, a child doesn’t need to have two married parents to be wanted and loved. Many of you know, I am a prime example of that. Therefore, when someone says a woman choosing to do it on her own is also choosing a “messed up life,” I find this incredibly insulting.

Yet, while pro-choicers, so to speak, complain that pro-lifers don’t respect their rights to NOT have children, there are a number of pro-choicers who, in turn, do not respect the right of others to CHOOSE to have the child. That doesn’t make you pro-choice – that makes you pro-abortion. And, yes, there IS a difference – just like there’s a difference between pro-life and anti-abortion.

However, this is why it is such a heated issue. Pro-lifers get upset with pro-choicers for calling “unborn children” a “punishment,” whereas pro-choicers get annoyed with pro-lifers for calling a “fetus” a “blessing.” However, it’s simply a refusal to see where the other side is coming from: for some people, regardless of the circumstances, a child WOULD be a blessing to them. For others, once again, regardless of the circumstances, a pregnancy would be their absolute worst nightmare. Do we, as a civilized society, want to force women to bring a child into the world that the mother views as her worst nightmare? We criticize China for forcing women to have abortions in the name of population control – yet, aren’t forced pregnancies just as cruel?

The truth is, people want validation for their opinions. Live and let live is not a common mantra anymore. Instead, someone will say, “Well, I LOVE Children and I want 10 of them, so YOU SHOULD TOO!” And, in response, another may say, “Well, I can’t STAND children and I don’t want ANY, and your little brats are crowding my space, so YOU should get sterilized!” Obviously, this is an extreme example, however instead of saying that abortion should be legal and birth control readily available for those who CHOOSE to use it, it seems that one side is just as bad as the other in forcing the issue down peoples’ throats. It’s disheartening, and it cheapens the rhetoric.

In this case, Sarah has made the choice to have this child. It is clearly a difficult choice to make, no matter what she had decided, and she will deal with comments, stares, and unsolicited opinions for the next nine months (at least). However, it was her choice, and her baby will grow up knowing that he (or she) may not have been planned, but that he was wanted and loved all the same.

Just like I did.