Better To Die Before Birth Than To Live As An Unwanted Child

This is taken from Is Abortion Really So Bad?  by Dr. Joel Beeke, a pastor, theologian and seminary professor.

Better To Die Before Birth Than To Live As An Unwanted Child

What is the justification for legal abortion? Let us examine the arguments used by those who promote abortion to determine on how strong of a foundation this practice is based.

Argument 5:

Better To Die Before Birth Than To Live As An Unwanted Child

First, to give a human being the power to determine the future life of another individual based on whether he is “wanted” or “unwanted” is most dangerous. Do we have the right to kill people based on whether or not we want them? Such a viewpoint leads highly cultured societies to commit genocide against the mentally challenged and “inferior” races.

Second, is the child never wanted by anyone? Many mothers did not want the pregnancy but cherish the child, especially after birth. There are also many parents who want to adopt a child. To say that the child is not wanted now by its mother does not mean it will never be loved.

Third, this argument has horrifying implications for “unwanted” children already born. If it is better to kill the baby than to let it be unwanted, then what does that imply about homeless children? Children with abusive parents? Would it be loving to kill these children? Of course not; love calls us to teach their parents to care for them or to find parents for them. In the same way, if unborn children are truly “unwanted,” we should try to help their mothers to see them differently or help the children to find adoptive parents. Did you know that Steve Jobs was unwanted by his birth mother and the adopted parents the government initially chose?

Fourth, what gives us the right to decide whether it is better for a person to live or to die? Are we the owner of that person’s life? Do we know with certainty the child’s future? Do not many “unwanted” children overcome severe physical or emotional handicaps in their youth and function as useful adult citizens? Do not many people in painful situations nevertheless wisely choose to live rather than to kill themselves?

In the end, the seemingly compassionate argument for the “wanted” child makes no sense at all. At best, it is an emotional, illogical appeal; at worst, it is a mask for deadly selfishness.

3 thoughts on “Better To Die Before Birth Than To Live As An Unwanted Child”

  1. While I am pro-life and do agree that this argument is a very poor one for those who are pro-life, as an adoptee, and one who is a member of a group of many adoptees who have grown up feeling wholly unwanted most of their lives, I do want to caution against the “rainbows and unicorns” view of adoption that the world likes to portray. In many of the western world adoption situations that are not international adoption based, (as I believe many of those that adopt outside of their own race tend to have the heart of the child in mind and truly rescuing a child and not caring that the world will obviously know their child is adopted) so many of the adoptive parents seek to mask the pain of their failed pregnancies or infertility issues through adoption. We are their second choice. We are there to fulfill their needs rather than them being there to love us. We are charged with filling their hole which they paid for when they adopted us rather than them filling our holes and loving us unconditionally. We feel incredibly unwanted our entire lives because of this. Because we were torn from our mothers at birth and placed whenever each individual was placed and not appropriately coddled until that time. And still not often then because our adoptive mother’s didn’t experience childbirth and many don’t have natural mothering instincts. And when we act in ways that aren’t congruent with what they are equipped to handle, we definitely feel unwanted and unloved. Even when we aren’t acting badly, but rather just towards our digenetic disposition which they don’t understand or sympathize with. And many adoptees are actually pro-life because of the horrible lives they’ve lived. I’m one of the few that’s pro-life. Many actually wish they would have been aborted. I just wanted to share that flip side/real cases emotion with you.

    1. Thank you Alice for taking the time to give me a lengthy response.

      I can’t begin to imagine the experience of adoptees, and I am truly sorry to hear that for many it has been less than ideal.

      I have often wondered about the maternal instinct thing in regards to those who adopt out of an inability to conceive their own children and what kind of lack that represents.

      I also wonder what is possible – What would be possible if there was genuine and effective support for those families where adoptee’s are numbered among them?

      I wonder what it would be like if there was genuine care and support for those who are adopted into families where that parental spark is lacking.

      I wonder what it would be like if those who are effectively disowned by their family of biological origin to receive genuine care and support when they have basically been told all their lives that they weren’t wanted – firstly by FOBO and then adopting family.

      I really do agree that all too often this very complex life issue is treated as an easy solution. I also agree that there is that idea that being an adoptee is is all rainbows and unicorns and that this idea is false.

      I would say that this may not be a problem inherent in adoption, but something more deeply rooted in the brokenness of humanity.

      1. I agree wholeheartedly with what you say and what you wonder. There are so many “what ifs”. One solution I think would be to have foundations that focus more on raising money to help keep children in their families of origin so that where money/unwed is the main issue, that fundraising can go a long way towards keeping families together rather than coaxing mother’s in to giving up their babies by convincing them that the child will have a better life simply because an adoptive family can better support that child. If people give to charities for so many other lesser reasons, I can’t see why this one wouldn’t be a good cause. That is one way that I think the situation could be helped. Thank you for having an open mind to my thoughts and for sympathizing with my point of view!

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