Doctors Pressured My Mother to Have an Abortion, But She Courageously Refused

Opinion   |   Sarah Zarr   |   May 3, 2021   |   3:51PM   |   Washington, DC

In 1993, my mother found out she was pregnant with me. I am the third child, and her previous pregnancies had been very difficult and complicated because of health issues my mom faced. In fact, I was a complete surprise as doctors said she wouldn’t be able to get pregnant again. Despite forceful pressure from numerous doctors to abort me throughout her high-risk pregnancy, my mom courageously stood firm and advocated for a solution that would give us both a chance to live. With much perseverance, she found a better doctor who offered the medical interventions and solutions that got my mom and me through the pregnancy and birth.

My mother is alive today, years after she refused an abortion offered under the pretense that it would preserve her own health. I’m here today because my mother rejected those pressures to have me killed and instead demanded that her medical support team find non-lethal ways of caring for both of us. No woman should ever have to demand medical care for the two patients — herself and her child — she brings to the doctor during pregnancy. She should never have to face pressures to have her own child killed by doctors who took an oath to heal. She should be given solutions and support.

That’s why it matters that Texas furthered numerous, successful pro-life bills this session. It’s why I spent countless hours with young people at the Capitol in Austin lobbing and testifying in support of these bills, and why we persisted even when the Senate Sergeant-At-Arms repeatedly censored us to cover up pro-life slogans on our clothing during Committee hearings. It’s why Students for Life Action deployed in force to knock on thousands of doors in Lubbock when a Sanctuary City ordinance was placed on the ballot.

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After nearly 4,000 doors knocked, 5,000 phone calls, and 20,000 text messages in support of Proposition A, Lubbock residents showed up Saturday and voted to make their home a Sanctuary City for the Unborn. This was an incredible victory because, although Lubbock is the 25th city to become a Sanctuary for the Unborn, it is the first to have a Planned Parenthood abortion business inside city limits. The people of Lubbock do not welcome abortion industry violence in their home town.

When the lives of innocent children hang in the balance — like mine once did — there is no room for backing down to the abortion status quo. When no one is advocating for women’s healthcare amidst pregnancy, I will always advocate for women to be given support, not pressured into abortion. Women are strong and courageous. They don’t need abortion; they need life-affirming care.

When students and I hand-delivered letters signed by nearly one hundred pro-life campus groups in the state to all thirty-one state senators’ offices at the Capitol, we talked to them about why their votes matter. And we told them why we cast our ballots for them based on how they cast their ballots for the preborn and for women being targeted by the predatory abortion industry. That accountability is what young voters want. January polling commissioned by Students for Life of America found that nearly seven in ten Millennial and Gen Z registered voters want to vote on abortion related policy. Abortion is far from “settled.”

My mom’s experience raises an important question: What if we lead with solutions instead of accepting the discriminatory abortion status quo that says to kill children when their lives present us with challenges? And we need not downplay the challenges. Pregnant women seeking abortion endure a lack of partner support, financial strain, and often have other children to consider. The question is why we accept killing a mom’s innocent child as a solution to any struggle she faces. Is this not a demeaning status quo to impose on both her and her child?

The Texas Legislature has advanced numerous laws that will meaningfully address the abortion status quo in our state. The Texas Abolition Strategy, for example, underscores the humanity and dignity of the preborn child. EMMA, or the “Every Mother Matters Act,” will ensure that pregnant women in crisis are informed of the myriad resources available to them to help them not only survive but thrive as parents. Lack of knowledge about these resources is a serious problem among the abortion industry’s target demographics.

Abortion is not a solution to the hard circumstances women, children, and families face. And Texas is leading with real solutions that don’t end the life of children and harm women, but instead, protect them. The road to Roe v. Wade started in Texas, and Texas is poised to lead once again in reversing Roe and helping the nation rethink its disastrous abortion status quo. 

LifeNews Note: Sarah Zarr is the Texas and Southern Regional Manager for Students for Life of America and Students for Life Action. She represents nearly 100 Students for Life groups in schools and colleges all across the state of Texas and speaks on behalf of the Pro-Life Generation, which makes up nearly 1,300 student groups across the nation.