Pregnant and Without a Job, She Found Help

By Maria V. Gallagher, Legislative Director

I had just picked up some coffee, hoping the jolt of java would help me power through the rest of my day.

As I approached the intersection, I saw her, holding a sign which read, “Pregnant. No job.”

I beeped my horn and signaled for her to come up to my car window. I knew handing her cash was not enough–she needed much more than a few dollars could bring. She needed hope, compassion, companionship–not to mention a car seat and baby clothes.

What she needed was downtown–at a pregnancy resource center.

I quickly gave her the name of the center. The stoplight turned and I had to join the parade of traffic passing through the intersection.

But my conscience would not allow me to abandon this woman, or the distressing situation in which she found herself. So I ultimately circled back, parked the car, and approached her again–this time with cell phone in hand, ready to give her the address of the pregnancy center.

I explained to her the resources and services which the center could provide. She seemed a bit incredulous, not realizing that there was an entire facility dedicated to serving the needs of pregnant women, free of charge.

Pregnancy resource centers provide a critical safety net for women who find themselves in difficult situations. The comprehensive counseling and mentorship which the centers provide can be crucial to a pregnant woman’s journey.

Internet ads, billboards, and flyers can all help to spread the word. But sometimes the best messenger is another person, who can carry the message of love through a personal interaction.

I am so grateful for my local pregnancy center, and the many centers which dot my state. They provide a safe haven for women and their babies during difficult times, and contribute greatly to the quality of life in our communities.

They are a beacon in the darkness, and their light of hope shines brightly during these stressful times.

Women at NYC Abortion Center Reject Abortion Doula Services

Today, I read a story in The Atlantic about a woman who volunteers as an abortion doula in New York City.

The woman said she provides “pain management and relaxation techniques, information and education about pregnancy, and above all, emotional support and empathy” to women undergoing abortions.

What really struck me was the number of women who refused her services during their abortions. She said: “Of the seven I was with yesterday, five of them were not really interested in connecting. They don’t want to make eye contact. They’re resistant to my offered hand.”

I wondered why all those women refused her support. Then, an achingly painful thought crossed my mind. I imagined being those women laying on the cold, hard table, feeling so powerless and so alone as if all the world was against them.

I imagined them looking away bitterly and thinking, “Where were you yesterday?”

“I don’t need your compassion today. I needed it yesterday when my boyfriend told me he’d leave me if I didn’t get this abortion.

“I needed you yesterday when I couldn’t pay my rent.

“I needed you yesterday when I felt self-conscious and wanted someone to tell me I’m still beautiful.

“I needed you yesterday when I thought maybe, just maybe if I had a friend to take me to doctor’s appointments and hold my hand during labor and help with babysitting, that maybe I could do this. I could be a good mom.

“No, your compassion came too late.”

I believe a lot of people who support abortion do it out of a misplaced compassion. They see pregnant women struggling, worried, alone, and they believe abortion is a quick and easy solution. But they fail to see that their compassion doesn’t go far enough and doesn’t come soon enough. They fail to realize that an abortion doesn’t really solve the woman’s actual problem, and it carries a life-long impact for two people, not just one.

That’s why pro-life outreach through pregnancy resource centers is so vitally important. These centers provide complete compassion for both women and children. And they help women to overcome the root of their problems – whether it’s poverty or relationship trouble or emotional support.

Our pro-life movement truly is a movement of compassion. We realize that compassion is a never-ending task, and we keep striving to extend our compassion further and further so that every woman is empowered with the resources to choose life.

If you know someone who is pregnant and needs help, click here to find pregnancy resources in Pennsylvania.