How a Culture of Life Has Empowered Me As a First-Time Mom 

Caroline Wharton - 07 Oct 2022
Guest post by SFLAction Deputy Director Lilly Branham

GUEST POST: I’ve been a pro-life activist working with Students for Life of America (SFLA) and Students for Life Action (SFLAction) for nearly five years , and I was blessed to see Roe v. Wade reversed this June when I was seven months pregnant. Becoming a mother in a Post-Roe America has been a beautiful experience thanks to the culture of life I am blessed to live in. It’s my prayer that as this culture of life grows and strengthens in our Post-Roe America, more women will be able to have a similar experience as new mothers.  

With that said, here are just a few ways I’ve been empowered by the pro-life movement: 

  1. The Pro-Life Community 

I was so happy to find out I was expecting with my husband, but like many new moms, I was also nervous. However, being recognized as a mother from the moment of conception by the pro-life community (rather than “becoming a mother” at birth) really helped me connect with my son and transition to a new season of life — full of selflessness as I care for a little human. 

Similarly, knowing that my preborn son was a distinct human being who has never been created before and never would be again helped me bond with my son before he was born. Understanding the value of my son from a pro-life perspective also informed the decisions I made while pregnant like working hard to make healthy choices related to diet, exercise, and more. I didn’t begin caring for my son when he was born — I began as soon as I found out I was pregnant! 

I cannot imagine believing the lie from the abortion industry that my child was “only a clump of cells” until he was born and then trying to bond with him for the first time at that point. Instead, every week that I was pregnant was special as I was getting to know the little human inside of me, and my pro-life community recognized the value of my experience of motherhood while pregnant and the value of my child.  

  1. My Prenatal & Postnatal Healthcare 

I purposefully chose the midwifery model for a variety of reasons. “Midwife” means “with woman,” and I think that’s so beautiful. New moms are often vulnerable and nervous (even when they deeply desire their child like I did), and I can’t help but notice the difference in care I received from the abortion industry’s model of “care.”  

The midwives I worked with constantly reminded me that I was designed to be a mother, encouraged me to trust the instincts God has given me in making decisions to care for myself and my baby after providing me all the information, walked closely alongside me, and checked on me frequently after my baby was born.  

My appointments with my midwife during pregnancy and following the birth of my son typically lasted an hour. I was never rushed, and I was encouraged to ask questions and talk about how I was doing physically and emotionally.  

In stark contrast to my care, the abortion industry is not providing healthcare because as SFLA President Kristan Hawkins says, “Healthcare doesn’t kill people.” Besides ending the lives of millions of children, abortion vendors lie to women and harm them — telling them to ignore distinct signs of life like a heartbeat. They claim that abortion pill anecdote doesn’t exist and routinely incur health and safety violations because their focus is money rather than mothers.  

I pray that in a Post-Roe America, more women find supportive prenatal and postnatal caregivers who treat both them and their preborn babies as patients; and that mothers are empowered in their pregnancy, birth, and postpartum experiences, whether that be with a midwife or OBGYN.  

  1. My Pro-Life Husband 

My husband recognized the value of our son from the moment he was created, and he supported me throughout pregnancy in so many ways. There are many pro-abortion men in our culture (“bro-choicers” as we call them), and there is really nothing more unattractive than a man who seeks to harm women and children through the violence of abortion, as he refuses to be held accountable for his actions.  

My heart breaks for women who are coerced by men in their life to have an abortion or do not have the support of their partners in their pregnancies. I am thankful for the pro-life men in my life who value all human life from the earliest stages and seek to protect it. This is the kind of man I will raise my son to be.  

  1. Supportive Employer 

I’m so thankful to work for SFLAction. This organization makes accommodations and provides paid leave for pregnant and parenting team members. I have no doubt that it would have been more helpful (in terms of work output) for my team for me to take zero time off, but because of the pro-life values we hold, they support staff parental leave and make accommodation. Did I mention I was also eight months pregnant when I received a promotion?  

This is in stark contrast to the huge companies like Kroger and Bank of America that are paying travel expenses for abortion-seeking women. It doesn’t get more misogynistic and anti-family than that — telling mothers that they are more valuable in the workplace if they kill their children. In a Post-Roe America, promoting pro-family work culture is more important than ever.  

Every woman deserves to live in a culture of life, where she receives true support as a new mother just like I did. Thankfully, SFLA leaders across the country are working on building relationships and educating about the value of life everywhere they go. I am excited to see what the Post-Roe Generation will do!  

Looking for a Post-Roe onesie as pictured above? Check out SFLA’s merch shop HERE.

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