by Matt Abbott
October 14, 2005
LifeNews.com Note: Matt C. Abbott is the former executive director of the Illinois Right to Life Committee and the former director of public affairs for the Chicago-based Pro-Life Action League. He is a Catholic journalist and commentator.
Dawn Jackson had an abortion when she was a teenager.
The San Antonio, Texas resident still has painful memories of that time in her life.
"Back then [in 1974], you couldn’t go to the drug store and purchase a pregnancy test kit," recalls Dawn. "Since I was so terrified, I wouldn’t even go to my family physician to find out for sure if I was pregnant."
She was pregnant, as it turned out.
"I didn’t want to tell my parents, so I ended up having to involve a few other people to take me to get the abortion. I was under age and was told I had to have parental consent."
With the help of a friend (who posed as Dawn’s mother, even wearing a wig sprayed with grey streaks), Dawn went to an abortionist in Lubbock, where the procedure was performed.
Now she is speaking out in support of parental consent, and in particular California’s Proposition 73, which "would require abortion businesses to notify a parent or guardian 48 hours prior to performing an abortion on a minor girl" in that state.
"I support Proposition 73 for several reasons," says Dawn. "Had my parents been notified my outcome might have been totally different and my child might have been spared.
"Of all the people in whom I chose to confide, no one ever talked to me about keeping my baby; or that she even was a baby."
"Also, I truly believe it adversely affected my relationship with my mother for 30 years. I so often would cry out to the Lord asking Him to heal my relationship with my mother, and also asking what is it that was causing this.
"Now I know — it was my abortion, as well as the fact that I concealed it from her all those years. I also involved my mother’s sister in my abortion and it adversely affected their relationship. Oh what a web we weave."
And Dawn is now a mother.
"I simply cannot imagine that a minor girl — a child — can obtain an abortion without the knowledge of her parents. When my son was younger, I would always have to sign a medical waiver each time my husband and I went out of town, giving permission to the persons keeping my son to seek medical treatment should the need arise.
"Children are the parents’ responsibility, and for heaven’s sake, we need to know what’s going on with them so we can help them make wise choices and attend to their physical needs. The state has no right to keep the parents from knowing what’s going on in the lives of their children.
"Parents have to give permission for everything else except abortion, and that just doesn’t make any sense to me. I know what’s best for my child, not Planned Parenthood; they’re in the business of taking lives."