Should girls under eighteen hide their abortion from their parents?

by eli.morin on September 9, 2013 - 10:08pm

         Nowadays, we can clearly notice an increase in the number of abortions and especially for the girls less than eighteen years of age. That is why the article I chose to summarize and analyse is about minor girls getting abortions and whether they can keep that information secret from their parents.

         In this article, it is obvious that the authors, W. E. Jacobs and Nancy Sprague, are in favor for telling the parents about their daughter’s abortion. They state that this is a serious medical undertaking which should be announced to parents of under-eighteen-year-old girls. They also say that those parents have the right to know about their daughter’s pregnancy and then the right to offer help and guidance throughout this procedure. The authors think that telling the parents when a young girl is about to get an abortion would make those girls realise all the consequences that sexual activities can have and all the complications that could happen during this risky medical procedure. In the same way of thoughts, the main point of their article is that hiding an abortion can only contribute to a family disruption.  They say that it is a direct attack on the profound meaning of family support because the role of parents should be reduced to only providing food and housing by not telling them about the pregnancy situation.

         This side of the debate represents the ethical principle “Family First” because minor girls should tell their parents about getting an abortion which should help them in getting support and different points of view. It also represents many values such as parental responsibilities, family, security and honesty which all should push girls under eighteen years old to tell their parents about their situation.

         However, in this article, even if the authors clearly mention their position in the debate, they state that young girls could have the tendency to hide pregnancy and sexual activities by fear to be embarrassed, grounded, lectured and prohibited to see their boyfriend again. The main ethical principle that could represent this side of the debate is “Respect of Autonomy” because all the reasons the authors mention for not telling the parents are enough to actually decide to hide the abortion.

         Therefore, I truly think that minor girls with autonomy and individual freedom values are mature and autonomic at a point that they can repair their own mistake without telling their parents. In this article, the side of the debate for telling the parents appears to be stronger than the one for hiding abortion but in my opinion, I think that it is the contrary because if they decide to hide pregnancy, it is obviously because they have a good reason; maybe they know their parents will get really upset and some of them will not provide support even if they know about it. However, what kind of support could parents provide to their daughter under eighteen after they know about their thought of getting an abortion?

Jacobs, W.E.Sprague, Nancy. "Point: Parents Must Be Notified In Advance Of An Abortion On Women Under 18." Points Of View: Abortion & Minors (2013): 2. Points of View Reference Center. Web. 9 Sept. 2013.

Comments

Abortion amongst young teenagers has become a mainstream topic nowadays. I agree with you in that girls should be able to decide for themselves whether or not their parents should know about their unwanted pregnancy. For a subject as serious as pregnancy, I too, think that teenage girls are able to way out the pros and cons of telling their parents about their situation. If they truly though it out and strongly believe that their parents would not support them and be respective of their situation, perhaps it is better for them to simply not inform their parents about it.

I think that parents should focus on providing emotional support to their daughters who are thinking about getting an abortion. From my point of view, I think that daughters would need their parents affection more than ever when they are in a situation as devastating as abortion.

The topic of abortion caught my interest because it is a very relevant issue in today's society but what really drew me in to reading your post was the presented issue along with that: that whether or not parents should know. A factor in the process I never seriously considered and would prove to be an interesting topic of ethical debate.
My opinion on the issue, however, does not relate or contradict your view that girls under the age of eighteen should not have to inform their parents about getting an abortion. In my personal view, the sexual life of a minor is likely to be more safe when there is communication between the daughter and the parent(s). On the other hand, if reasons are strong enough for the girl to not feel comfortable in telling her parents about her decision, I understand how it may be acceptable to allow her to keep it secret. The dangers are still there so I think the girl ought to consult with some authority figure for support to make sure she understands what is going on. This authority figure not being a doctor but someone to help her with the decision making process, so her secret from parents can still be a comfortable decision in her mind.
With the increasing number of sexually active teens and the consequentially increase of abortions, will the rising generation entering into adulthood have a different perception on the sanctity of life?

After reading your title, what interested me about your topic is the standpoint from which you write it. I find it interesting that you decided to focus on whether or not abortion in minors should be hidden rather than the topic of abortion in general; it’s a fresh take on an old issue. I agree with your point of view; saying that telling a parent about abortion should be up to the girls. I believe that if you are in a household where there is trust, respect and support, no girl or woman would feel uncomfortable or ashamed of her situation. Any young girl would be afraid of telling her parents about the issue of teen pregnancy and abortion, but a young girl that is too afraid to discuss it with her parents reflects on the type of relationship she maintains with her family. I believe that this is where the value or principle of family relies, on whether or not your child is comfortable enough to tell you about her situation, and asks for your help. If parents have done their jobs correctly, these young girls are educated about sexual activity and its consequences. And if they are old enough to engage in these activities, then they are old enough to deal with the consequences on their own if they wish. Autonomy, or the respect of autonomy, is an ethical principle that we should respect.
As shown in recent statistics, abortion levels are increasing in young woman. Is this a result of the sexualisation of women in the media? Is our society becoming too eager to engage in sexual activities as a result?

After reading your title, what interested me about your topic is the standpoint from which you write it. I find it interesting that you decided to focus on whether or not abortion in minors should be hidden rather than the topic of abortion in general; it’s a fresh take on an old issue. I agree with your point of view; saying that telling a parent about abortion should be up to the girls. I believe that if you are in a household where there is trust, respect and support, no girl or woman would feel uncomfortable or ashamed of her situation. Any young girl would be afraid of telling her parents about the issue of teen pregnancy and abortion, but a young girl that is too afraid to discuss it with her parents reflects on the type of relationship she maintains with her family. I believe that this is where the value or principle of family relies, on whether or not your child is comfortable enough to tell you about her situation, and asks for your help. If parents have done their jobs correctly, these young girls are educated about sexual activity and its consequences. And if they are old enough to engage in these activities, then they are old enough to deal with the consequences on their own if they wish. Autonomy, or the respect of autonomy, is an ethical principle that we should respect.
As shown in recent statistics, abortion levels are increasing in young woman. Is this a result of the sexualisation of women in the media? Is our society becoming too eager to engage in sexual activities as a result?