By Leslie Bosslet, Kansas City Pro-Life Future
Financial hardships are one of the most prominent reasons women seek abortion, especially at the pregnancy resource center (PRC) where I serve. Many are unemployed, and others already have multiple children. Staff and volunteers’ duty, first and foremost, is to listen to each incredibly strong woman and to praise her for her hard work as a mother and a struggling provider. Our second job is to educate them on what abortion is if she agrees to learn about it.
We do not judge or condemn, but we simply tell the truth about abortion and not only what it would do to her child, but what it can do to her, including lifelong physical and emotional ripple effects. If she stops us there, we respect her desire to shield herself from the harsh reality of abortion and move on. Then we dive into the abundant resources we have, especially for women in poverty.
I am not claiming that pregnancy clinics like ours solve poverty, or even dig clients completely out of poverty. But we do pour ourselves into each visit we have, and we truly strive to quiet the deafening financial noise from a client’s situation. We have paid clients’ rent and utility bills; we even covered part of a family member’s funeral arrangements. If we can lessen burdens like these, we can help a woman focus on the life she is carrying and to acknowledge that her baby is no less worthy of a birthday than babies who will be born into financial comfort.
Unlike abortion facilities that haphazardly and violently place bandages on the “problem” of the baby, we direct a mother’s attention to the roots of her problems in order to help her stop the cycle of poverty she is in:
- Is she struggling to make a living because she did not finish high school? We direct her to GED classes.
- Is she unable to find work? We refer her to job consultant ministries who will help her fine tune her resume.
- Is she unaware of other organizations’ assistance? We make countless referrals to food providers, diaper distributers, state insurance, free clinics, child care, reduced housing, and even legal aid, if needed.
- Does she realize she cannot provide for a child but another family would love to? We connect her to a compassionate adoption agency.
- Does she fear she does not have the knowledge parents need? We provide personal classes that educate on healthy pregnancies and meaningful motherhood.
- Does she hold the father accountable for his actions and ask him to provide for the child? We sure do ask fathers to do so in our conversations.
Along with these referrals we encourage, encourage, encourage by making thousands of phone calls, sending cards, and building relationships. Name any abortion facility that attempts to tackle the roots of financial burdens with the kind of practical assistance and emotional support that PRCs do. They would rather continue that cycle of poverty by pushing abortion again and again
I am not patting myself on the back, nor is this a request for recognition of all PRCs and our work. The Lord knows we are not perfect, and so do we. If a woman is not interested in these services, we respect her and ask her to return for support when she feels ready. Our job is to not only honor the lives of preborn children, but to uphold the dignity of the women and families we serve.
If we agree that abortion solves poverty, are we not consenting to killing innocent human beings in order to survive? It does not have to come to that. Abortion does not help bring women out of poverty. We often hear in pro-life circles that women deserve better than abortion, and this is true. That statement includes all women, dare I say especially those facing poverty.
Leslie Bosslet is a counselor at Wyandotte Pregnancy Clinic in Kansas City and is helping to start a Pro-Life Future chapter in Kansas City to grow the pro-life movement bring more resources to women in need.