China Forced-Abortion Family Planning Policy Hurts Parent-Child Relationship

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jul 7, 2006   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

China Forced-Abortion Family Planning Policy Hurts Parent-Child Relationship Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
July 7, 2006

Beijing, China ( — China’s family planning policy of forcing women and couples to have only one child causes numerous problems ranging from forced abortions and sterilizations to infanticides of female babies. The program is also apparently hurting parent-child relationships, according to a pregnancy hotline.

The Shanghai Girl-Pregnancy Hotline says that only three percent of the pregnant teenagers it helps want to talk to their parents about their pregnancy.

The hotline told the Shainghai Daily newspaper that it received 11,000 calls last year and took 784 teens to get abortions. In 95 percent of those cases, the teens chose a boyfriend to accompany them to the abortion center and asked the abortion practitioner to not inform their parents.

In some cases, parents are probably relying on abortions as a method of birth control for their teenagers.

"Most parents care only about their children’s study," XU Hui of the Shanghai People’s Liberation Army No. 411 Hospital, told the Shanghai newspaper. "They seldom talk about love or sex with their children. When they are informed that their daughters are pregnant, they just scold or even beat them."

Other parents in China may have a fear for their children — that a pregnancy in their teenage years means they are prohibited from having another child.

In China, parents must be informed about and sign off on a teenager’s abortion.

"For girls under 18, guardians must sign up an agreement before the [abortion]," Xu told the Daily. "If the doctors refuse to keep it a secret, the girl may find a stranger to pretend to be her guardian or even turn to uncertified private clinics."

But abortions are hurting teenagers and an 18 year-oil pregnant girl named Ting recently went to a private abortion facility. She told the newspaper she couldn’t stop bleeding after she came home and went to the PLA No. 411 hospital for help.

After she was examined by a physician, he told her she would never again be able to have children because she was damaged by the abortion.

Last month, the China government decided it will not prohibit abortions used to prevent the birth of girl babies even though sex-selection abortions have contributed to a stark gender imbalance that is creating a host of social problems.

China now has 119 boys for ever 100 girls, a gender imbalance that is far from the normal 103-100 ratio seen in industrialized nations across the globe. The imbalance has given rise to a culture of massive sex-trafficking and the kidnapping of teenagers and young adults to be forced into marriage.

Though it has started to crack down on the use of ultrasound machines to determine the gender of an unborn child, Chinese lawmakers could not agree on penalties for sex-selection abortions for those who get around the policy.

The country has also become a nation of bachelors as Chinese men have problems finding potential wives and starting families. This has contributed to a rise in crime, prostitution, and other problems.

The latest Chinese census, in April, shows 120 men for every 100 women in the Asian nation, up from 117 per 100 in the 2000 census.