We hear too many times from too many people that teens should not give birth to babies especially in cases of rape. But rarely do we get the opportunity to witness the victorious lives of those who defy that stigma.Not only do these teen moms have to deal with the trauma of being sexually assaulted but they also live with the verbal assaults from society along with physical attacks. What society isn’t aware of is that there are multitudes of teen moms of rape conceived children who have risen above all that was thrown at them. Certainly they needed the support of family or someone older but they were determined to be that hero for their child. Below are a few stories. Some identities are hidden to protect the mothers from further physical harm but all have no regrets for the life they have brought to this world.
Anna Richey was abused from the age of five and became pregnant at twelve. Not knowing what to do she told her step father who was responsible for this. He had threatened her not to tell anyone and since she had grown up with his threat she believed it. She was a very petite girl and no match for her attacker. He punched her in the stomach and forced her to take abortion pills. She lost her baby. But again at thirteen Anna was pregnant again. Abortion allowed her rapist to continue without restriction. But this teen mom just couldn’t bare the loss of another child and risked everything. She told her mother. It was a horrible shock to learn someone she loved was hurting someone she loved. This mother did what was right for her daughter, found a safe place with her children, called the police and the step father was no longer a threat behind bars for ten years. However Anna was forced into a societal prison of insults and rejection even by a school principal telling her mom, ” We don’t want her kind at our school.” But the smile on her precious daughter’s face kept her strong. It was her daughter that kept her from falling apart from the trauma of those many years. Anna as other mothers will tell you found healing and hope in her rape conceived daughter. “Having my daughter saved me life!” she says. Today Anna is going to be the proud grandmother of another precious girl. Her daughter is expecting her own daughter. Anna has never regretted one moment of the life of her daughter. Anna encourages other mothers “I was tiny and nothing special. If I can do it anyone can.” She currently advocates for the life of all unborn children and now serves on the board for CHOICES4LIFE helping other teen moms.
Iva had never gone anywhere alone. Not even to the park. But that one day she wanted to draw trees. It didn’t seem to be dangerous in the middle of the day. No one ever expected her to be attacked and become pregnant that day. But she did. It was her secret for months. But finally she told a school nurse. She told everything. Her parents were called. While horrified they vowed to do everything for their daughter and grandchild. Fifteen and a virgin no longer Iva would deliver a beautiful daughter into the world with no regrets for her decision. With full support of her parents Iva is going back to school. Her baby is a treasure. When asked what it the best part of being a mom to her daughter she says,”Just the fact that she’s mine and she brings so much love and happiness to my family and me.”
Kali had no idea that her teen impulse would be wrong. Sneaking out to meet who she thought was another teen online her life changed forever that night. A 66 year old pedophile attacked her and she became pregnant. He’s in jail but she was called a liar and kids from her high school spray painted “whore” and “prostitute” on her parents’ home. Her doctor said she was a wild child and wanted to save her reputation. What does that mean? She wants to protect her “wild child” reputation? The insanity of how these victims are treated crosses all levels of society, from the uneducated to the highly educated. She was threatened at school by one boy who said he’d show her what rape really was. Thankfully he never followed through. Kali like Iva has full support of her parents who love her baby boy seeing him as no different than any other family member. The whole family is blessed by this little boy and he’s changed their life for the better. Kali is along with Iva are actively helping other teen moms during pregnancy or raising their baby. They are very outspoken and unashamed with their whole family standing with them.
Jackie was abused by her step uncle from the age of nine and by seventeen she became pregnant. Told by her step father that she had two weeks to get out of the house she had no where to go. Other family members told her she was bring shame on the family. Shame that belonged to the rapist was now branded onto Jackie. She tried Planned Parenthood for help but they had no adoption options only urging her to hurry and get an abortion. They would get rid of the problem in 72 hours! Jackie was horrified. Because of the help of a pastor Jackie found hope and care in an unwed mother’s home. Her maternal aunt and uncle stood by her also connecting her with adoption agencies. “In the long run, I determined I was going to keep my baby, and be the best mother I possibly could, even if it meant doing it alone.” Jackie knew the love she had for her daughter would see them through any difficulties. ”
“Was I young and gullible and ignoring life’s realities? Probably. Was I ‘blessed among women’? Absolutely! My baby girl has been a blessing to me since the hour she was born. She has been my joy in life, and my reason to go on when times are hard. She is now 31 years old and she is a beautiful and successful person. She is a light to the world, bright and wonderful. She has two babies of her own now. And their lives bless me daily.” Jackie is an advocate for life and shares her own story of life and hope to anyone who is struggling with a similar situation. She’d like society to know this. “As the mother of a child conceived by incestuous rape, I am insulted and belittled on many levels by the connection of abortion and rape. I am sick of abortion campaigners exploiting rape victims to serve their agenda. This is precisely what they’ve done for decades, with the consequence of stigmatizing those conceived in rape and the women who’ve given birth to them. They have helped question the “legitimacy” of the rape in the first place. ‘If it was really rape, why didn’t you get an abortion?’ sounds a lot like, ‘If it was really rape, why didn’t you report it right away?’ Thank you, Pro-“Choice” lobby for being “pro-woman” and protecting women and children who are victimized by rape. When people say ‘I only believe in abortion in the exception of rape’, they don’t realize how demoralizing they are to the woman or the child in that situation. That isn’t compassion, it is harmful in the same way the rape was harmful. In saying that, these women are victimized all over again, this time by society at large. Rape is hard and sad, but statistics show more than 80% of women who conceive in rape do NOT choose abortion. If they don’t believe abortion is the answer, why should anyone else?”
I wrote about another teen who remains private with her story for now. She is fifteen and has now given birth to a beautiful baby boy. She once not only considered but demanded an abortion until she was persuaded that abortion was not a life giving decision. She is thriving and never wants to think of what she almost did. Her son is the joy of her life and she is the best mom even nursing him and going to school. She is a very determined young woman and has no regrets. Her grandmother is completely loving this baby and is helping raise him and the teen mom. Nothing but huge smiles and tears of joy when I visited them. She is so grateful for me not giving up trying to change her mind on abortion. Her son will be even more grateful!
Lauran dreamed of being a mom and having lots of children after she was married. Her dreams of having children that way was shattered when she was raped someone she was dating. The world hardly ever believes a girl is raped and it is especially hard to convince them when the girl has a relationship with the rapist. Lauran was “your ordinary girl” she says, ready to start her senior year in high school ,”making choices that only affected me. Little did I know, there was someone out there thinking only of himself about to make a selfish choice that was going to affect me for the rest of my life. One month into my senior year of high school, and I find out that through one boys selfish desires, and lack of respect for me, I was pregnant, through rape. The next eight months were filled with obstacles to overcome, acceptance of dreams that might not come true, and the reality that I had to complete what I started in order to get my diploma in spite of my situation. I learned something so valuable in those eight months. I was not the person outsiders assumed me to be. I was stronger than I ever knew possible. I had developed the heart of a mommy. In spite of the circumstances of her conception, I began to realize that my daughter was not a creation of violence, she was a gift from God, the creator of life. It was that realization that changed my perspective completely. One week after graduation Isabella Grace came into the world. I thought I had been strong for the past 9 months but I had no idea how much stronger I would become because of this beautiful little girl. I have taken on obstacles that girls my age couldn’t imagine having to face and I have come out on top. It’s not because of my strength alone, but it is God who gives me strength, every minute of everyday. Alone, I could not do this.” When Lauran’s daughter heard that Lauran was saying a few words for this article her daughter said she wanted to say something too. “I love my mom. I love my whole family. I think its cool that I have just my mom. I’m God’s princess and I love him so much. He’s my heavenly father. He’s the King of the whole world.” Children grow up confident and secure when the realize God is their creator and the circumstances on how we get into this world isn’t what makes us who we are. People wonder how children conceived in rape can live knowing we are conceived in rape. It’s time to let those of us conceived that way to tell the world. It’s not our shame. It’s time the world stopped blaming women and children for what evil men do.
A woman who wishes to remain anonymous lives outside the U.S. She decided to move in with a guy when she was 18 and he turned out to be an abuser. She was raped and became pregnant. Yes women in relationships can be raped! Her mother helped her escape from him but he stalked her then and still does. She says “I was a mess. I started with the depression [and] I didn’t feel any thing for my daughter. I didn’t leave the house for the first year as I was scared he was out there and trying to take her away. But now [in] 2014 I wouldn’t change a thing. I can now say I love my daughter, even if her dad is still doing the drive bys and I’m still scared he is going to come and take her and that is always going to be in my mind.”
Here you can see the beginning does not dictate the ending. Even when mothers have a rough start they can find the joy later. Those who have chosen abortion will never know the joys that can overcome the struggles. Even in the case of rape there is hope in life! And heroic teen moms are defying the stigma that they are unable to handle childbirth both physically and emotionally after rape.