Sidewalk counselor tells of distraught father

A sidewalk counselor at an abortion clinic told this story:

I wish I had a more uplifting story from the sidewalk to share today but this is what is on my mind and I wanted to write about it. Yesterday I was praying outside Planned Parenthood with about 5 other prayer volunteers. I saw a man walk outside and I motioned for him to come over and talk to me. He walked up and I offered him some reading material with local options and resources.

I introduced myself and asked him if he would mind sharing with me why he was there. I’ll call him “R”. He said that his girlfriend was inside to talk about her positive pregnancy test and get counseling. I asked him how he felt about her being pregnant and he said “Well, I’d like it but they told her that this is her choice and no one else’s to make so she’ll have to decide for herself.” It sounded like she had already been there once this week for a pregnancy test and a sonogram only to identify how far along she was and this may be the day she scheduled an abortion. Her boyfriend wasn’t sure but he made a circle around the word “Abortion” with his finger and said she may be here for this. I noticed that the thought of word was too difficult for him speak.

I asked him how he felt about not having a say in the matter and he said “The people at Planned Parenthood told her that the decision wasn’t up to me.” I told him that I disagreed and shared that the baby in her womb was made up of half of his DNA and if he hoped to be married to her one day (as he said he did); this might be a pivotal point in their relationship where he could show her that he is serious about her, will support her, and that he wanted her to keep the baby. The look on his face was of utter helplessness and I’m sure he had a thousand thoughts running through his head. It’s hard in a matter of minutes to teach a man to be bold and walk in the clinic and say something like “No, lets not do this today, this decision is permanent and forever. I love you and want the best for us. Let’s talk about this some more.”

I asked him if he had a particular faith and he said he was Catholic. I pointed to some of our Catholic volunteers on the sidewalk who were holding rosaries and hoped that this would build common ground. I shared a bible verse that I had memorized and tried to get him to see that the Lord knew of this baby’s life at the moment of conception and if we rely on Christ, He will help us even in situations like this.

We talked about a few other things including his degree from a California State University, the two jobs he works at and their closest Pregnancy Resource Center. He also gave me his phone number so that I could check on them. I asked him if he would mind if I prayed with him. I took his hand and prayed that the Lord would intervene, bless their situation and help them to see that choosing life for the baby inside her womb would be a decision that they could handle. He walked away with the flyers I gave him in hand.

I don’t know how much time went by but “R” and his girlfriend drove up near us and proceeded to merge onto the main road. After all of the years of praying and counseling on the sidewalk I know the look of someone who has just had an abortion. They have a solemn and quite look about them. They don’t look proud or empowered. They look empty. I saw “R’s” girlfriend slouching in the passenger seat of his car and by the look on her face, I hoped my presumption of her having an abortion was wrong.

A few hours later I texted “R” and asked him if there was anything I could do to help their situation. He confirmed that she did indeed have an abortion. She had the surgical procedure done and they were at the park “breathing and talking”. He texted and said “I’m sorry. Thank you for your prayers.” I responded with some resources that would be helpful if needed in the future and finally; “I wish there was more I could have done.”

This isn’t uncommon. “R” was the father of the baby in his girlfriend’s womb but both he and his girlfriend were sold on the idea that he had no say in the matter. That baby is now dead. His girlfriend’s womb is now empty. This is what they call “choice”.

Sidewalk counseling story posted to facebook by Nicola Morrison, April 7, 2017

Read testimonies of the toll abortion takes on men 

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This man lost his preborn son or daugter

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About Sarah

Sarah Terzo is a freelance writer and journalist who works for Live Action. and is a member of the board of The Pro-life Alliance of Gays and Lesbians.
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