British Advice Columnists Justify Abortions, Scold Woman in Forced Abortions

International   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Aug 11, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

British Advice Columnists Justify Abortions, Scold Woman in Forced Abortions

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by Steven Ertelt Editor
August 11
, 2008

London, England ( — Britons who are looking for advice on abortion issues should probably look elsewhere instead of relying on newspaper advice columnists. That’s because two supposed advice gurus — The Sun’s Dear Deidre and Bel Mooney of the London Daily Mail — have suggested abortions to readers.

In an August 8 letter to Mooney, a mother of a pregnant daughter wonders if she should counsel the young woman to have an abortion.

"I can’t think of anyone to share this with, so I really hope you can give me your thoughts and maybe help my scrambled brain to clarity. My 21-year-old daughter has just told me she is pregnant," Irene writes.

Irene admits that her daughter, who has been seeing her boyfriend for six months, "doesn’t believe in terminating pregnancies and wants to keep her baby."

She commends her daughter’s stance and admits she is also "uncomfortable" with abortions but confesses she wants to coerce her daughter to have one anyway, saying: "I really want her to terminate her pregnancy."

Instead of condemning Irene for her desire to try to persuade her daughter to both violate her own conscience and to destroy the life of her daughter, Mooney eggs on her writer.

"No loving mother could just let two young people make such a grave, life-changing decision unadvised," she responds.

Saying there should be no social stigma for a woman who chooses to keep her baby, Mooney says there will be no complications with an abortion and encourages Irene to just find her daughter a good post-abortion counselor.

"Were she to choose the option of abortion, you would be able to help her find the best of NHS help, with counseling afterwards," Mooney writes.

Mooney admits she’s indifferent to Irene’s desire to talk her daughter into having an abortion because she’s done the same thing before.

"In 1968 a close friend found she was pregnant, at 21, by a guy who didn’t want to know. Her parents rejected her," she explained. "I suggested, urgently, that she have a termination."

She watched her friend have the baby and he has become a "devoted father himself" but that apparently had no effect on Mooney’s worldview.

"I would respect any young woman’s choice of an early termination, taken after very deep thought about the meaning of that decision," she concludes.

Meanwhile, columnist Dear Deidre chided a teenage girl whose boyfriend pressured her into having an abortion, calling her "foolish and naive."

"My ex forced me into a termination and I feel so guilty," the teen wrote.

"I’m 16 and he is 17. We were together for two months. We started to have sex about a month into our relationship. We didn’t use protection because I was a virgin and thought I wouldn’t get pregnant," she related.

"I took a pregnancy test and it was positive," she added. "He told me to get rid of it. He didn’t want to know."

The teen expressed a clear desire against having an abortion and criticized her partner for encouraging her to have one. However, she acknowledged she still has feelings for her boyfriend.

"I had a termination and I’m so upset about it. How can he deny his own child?" she asked. "I feel used and abused, but I still love him and wish I could get him back.
Deidre responded saying the teen wants to renew her relationship with her partner, who broke up with her prior to the abortion, "to make everything right."

She lambasted the boy’s behavior but chided the teen girl as well.

"You were foolish and naive but he has behaved appallingly," she wrote. "Please take a good look at the way he has treated you and allow yourself to get very angry with him."

Deidre ultimately tried to explain away the teen’s negative feelings associated with the forced abortion, saying they were normal.

"Of course, though, it’s normal to have mixed feelings after an abortion and my leaflet ‘Termination You Regret?’ explains more," she concluded.

ACTION: Send your comments to the advice columnists. Write to Bel Mooney, Daily Mail, 2 Derry Street, London, England W8 5TT, or e-mail [email protected]. Also, contact Dear Deidre at [email protected].


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