AbortionChat A place to talk about abortion; why you're for it, why you're against it, firsthand, secondhand, or curiosity. All we ask is that you keep an open mind.

The Importance of Knowing What You Don’t Know by Kellie Maliborski

Wow, what on earth am I doing here? I don’t write serious stuff, I write about funny news articles and conversations I have with my megalomaniac cat. Heavy stuff like abortion really isn’t up my alley, but when I found out about the AbortionChat blog and its purpose, I just couldn’t pass it up. After all, I may not do serious, but I definitely do opinionated!

So I’m sure you’re all wondering, what is Kellie’s opinion? Is she pro-life? Is she pro-choice? Is she a combination of the two? Does she believe that babies come from cabbage patches? Well, the answer to those very good questions is … I haven’t the foggiest.

I know that if I were to fall pregnant I’d probably start to think in terms of “baby” right away rather than embryo or foetus. I’ve always known that abortion wouldn’t be an option for me. It’s not a moral choice or a hard argued philosophy, it’s just the way I’ve always been. If I found out I was pregnant, I doubt the idea of abortion would even enter my mind as a solution, assuming I believed a solution was necessary.

So I know that I wouldn’t ever want to have an abortion personally, although I do admit that my resolve gets a little fuzzy when you bring things like congenital defects or rape into the picture. But do I think that other women should feel the same way as me and make the same decisions? No. Do I claim to know what they SHOULD feel and do? Absolutely not!

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Yep, it’s a simple as that, kids. If you’ve come here looking for the final word on whether abortion is right or wrong, you’re barking up the wrong tree. I’m no more qualified to tell you than than I am to perform open heart surgery … and believe me, with my diet coke habit and perpetually shaky hands, you do NOT want me performing open heart surgery!

But here’s one thing I do know.

I can have thoughts, I can have ideas, but until I’ve actually been in every single situation those other women have been in, lived through everything they have, and have experienced all of their thoughts and feelings, I have absolutely no right to go marching around stating unequivocally that I know what they should or should not do.

I have the right to pass judgement on exactly one person … me. I get to decide what’s right for me, what I feel is moral or immoral, and how I’m going to action those decisions. I do NOT, however, get to do any of that for anyone else. Not until I gain the magic power of knowing exactly what they have been through.

Until I know how it feels to be raped by someone I trusted, or to find out that a birth defect means my baby wouldn’t live beyond his first birthday, or to know that I’m barely making it through the day taking care of myself and have no hope whatsoever of taking care of someone else too, I don’t get a vote.

I know it’s a messy subject, and it’d be lovely to believe that someone has the absolute answer to give us that will take away all the moral angsting, but that’s just not going to happen. I have zero answers, and as much other people might rattle on about how they do, I find it hard to believe that they have either.

But here’s a little bit of advice from your Auntie Kellie. Unless you’ve suddenly developed magical psychic powers, don’t presume to know what another woman has gone through or what she’s basing her decisions on. Whatever those decisions, be they to abort or not to abort, they were probably the hardest ones she ever had to make.

She’s got more than enough going on without having to deal with a guilt trip too.

Kellie shares her duplex, which she lovingly refers to as “The Fibro Shack”, with a cat bent on world domination, a cockatiel suffering from senile dementia, and a grumpy possum who, until recently, lived under the bathtub.  Now he lives in the tree in the back yard … don’t ask, it’s a long story.

You can find Kellie at her blog Delightfully Ludicrous 

17 Thoughts on “The Importance of Knowing What You Don’t Know by Kellie Maliborski

  1. THANK. YOU.

    I cannot have children. The factory is a little… “off,” if you will. This does not mean I cannot get pregnant, but if I did, not only would I be unable to carry to term, but I put myself at risk for a whole slew of serious complications.

    But I’m also married, and it is wholly unreasonable to expect that my husband (or myself) would want to live a life of celibacy. So I’m on birth control, but if that fails? If somehow I get pregnant? Nothing is 100% effective. I don’t see it as a choice. If I get pregnant, I have to end that pregnancy.

    And I shouldn’t have to tell anyone my medical history to justify my right to protect myself in that way.

  2. I am personally against abortions, especially in the case of my mother 68 years ago. I am also against the back ally butchering that cost the lives of over 10,000 women a year when abortion was illegal.

    Abortion is legal in this country, it will not change. Fortunatly culture changes, improved birth control methods and education have reduced unwanted pregnancies. Kelly hits the nail on the head, you can not judge this issues or situations of every different person who has to make this difficult decission.

  3. I really liked this, I want the right to be able to decide what I do with my body…the outsides and insides.

  4. I think one of the best examples of this, is the video the guy made of approaching protesters outside a clinic after yelling at his wife. She’d gone to have an abortion because the fetus was no longer viable. It was a medical and life saving procedure, and as she walked in, she was screamed at.

    No one knows anyone else’s circumstances. Until they do (and possibly even then), perhaps it’s best to be a little more sensitive…

  5. “Unless you’ve suddenly developed magical psychic powers, don’t presume to know what another woman has gone through or what she’s basing her decisions on. Whatever those decisions, be they to abort or not to abort, they were probably the hardest ones she ever had to make.” That sums it all up for me!!

  6. I am right there with you. I don’t think I could personally ever choose abortion, but I will never pretend that I have the right to make a decision for someone else. I have friends who have made this difficult choice, and let me tell you, it is not an “easy way out.” It’s a life-altering decision.

  7. You are so right. Unless you have been there you really don’t know how you would react. And no one has the right to make decisions for you. No one. I have been there. I had to make the difficult decision and luckily I had family and doctors that supported me no matter WHAT I decided. And I am 100% convinced that I made the right choice. I know I did. I would no have my beautiful son who was born one year after I decided to terminate a very risky pregnancy

  8. Very well said.

    The part about judging others- A friend of mine once told me not to worry about what others do- as I will not be held accountable for their actions when the day comes that I meet my maker. I will only be judged for what I have done or not done

    As long as it is legal for women to have an abortion, if they so choose to go that route, they can go to a doctor and have it done properly, minimizing the risk to their health.

  9. I so agree, Kellie! Every woman must have the right to make her own decisions in this area. Our role as society is to support whatever decision is made, whether that be access to safe medical abortion and treatment, fair and non-pressurizing adoption options or social programs helping parents raise their kids.

  10. Beautifully written and well-balanced. There is no one viewpoint which is ‘one size fits all’.

    As a survivor of incestuous childhood sexual abuse I know that, had I gotten pregnant, it would have been abortion or suicide. One or the other, as simple as that. Would that have been the right choice for another? I have no way of knowing since I’m not inside anyone’s skin but mine. What I do know is that the only thing I am allowed, when it comes to someone else’s decision: I’m allowed to support their choice, offer what help I may, and refrain from judging.

  11. You stated your position beautifully. I agree with you. I don’t believe that abortion is a choice for personally… BUT who am I to presume what other women think or do. It most assuredly is their choice and I am supportive of whatever choice they make.

  12. Great article, and everyone should be entitled to choose what is best for them without fear or judgment from others who do not know their circumstances.

  13. I agree with you 100%. I know I wouldn’t get an abortion (and not just because I’m a man), but I wouldn’t presume to know what another person would do. Since Mrs. Penwasser and I can no longer have kids, we glorify in the two we have. Not surprisingly, I wonder how I would react if my daughter got pregnant or my son got his girlfriend pregnant. I know I would not them to get an abortion, but would respect their opinions. And, if for some reason, they didn’t want the baby, I would raise him or her myself. Just thrilled I haven’t been faced with that decision.

  14. Very well put. At the heart of things, I don’t think it’s okay to end a human being’s life, but I can try to put myself in other women’s positions and understand how they can come to that decision, and I just can’t judge them.

  15. I am 100% on the same page with you. No matter what, I have no right to judge anyone else for the choices they make.

    The fact that I’m a Christian gives me even less of a right, because we’re not supposed to judge at all.

  16. Well, it turns out that I both respect your opinion and I agree no one should impose their views on others. That said, you don’t mind me returning to my safe haven that’s your blog?

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