Two years ago, Matthew Markman, a software salesman in California, and his wife, who were 20 weeks pregnant, learned that their son had a rare heart defect. If his wife was pregnant to full term, it would be difficult for him to survive the birth, their doctor told them.
The news broke Mr. Markman and his wife; they have been trying to have a baby for over a year and have used in vitro fertilization several times. After 3 rounds of implantation, one embryo stuck but resulted in a miscarriage. This pregnancy is their fifth embryo. They even decided to name it Elijah, “because my grandfather’s name starts with an E and he recently passed away,” said 37-year-old Markman, a self-described abortion rights advocate. know.
When the couple made the difficult decision to have an abortion, Markman felt that because his wife was the one who was pregnant and the one who had the procedure, he had to be the stronger person in that moment of despair. They cremated the remains and scattered the ashes on Muir Beach in Northern California.
“I personally had to take a few months off work because it was a very difficult period emotionally,” he said. “It took me a while to realize that this experience was hard for me as well.”
Life after abortion
Another recurring theme in the men’s responses to The Times was the belief that they would not be where they are today without an abortion.
There are numerous peer-reviewed studies connecting access to abortion with a woman’s emotional, physical, and financial outcomes, including milestones. Study the turn, followed women who had been denied abortions for five years and found that they were more likely to live in poverty or unemployed than women who were able to have an abortion. But experts note that only a handful of researchers have explored the long-term consequences of abortion on a man’s life trajectory.
Researchpublished in 2019 in the Journal of Adolescent Health, found that men whose partners had abortions while in college were more likely to graduate and earn higher incomes than men. no girlfriend.
Nam Phan, a 30-year-old engineer in Massachusetts and a father of two, said his wife’s abortion while they were dating as teenagers helped them eventually become better parents. At that time, they were not financially equipped, nor mature enough to take care of a baby. “I don’t think any of us could even manage our own care at the time,” he said.
Their first child, now 5, was also an unplanned pregnancy, but they felt more prepared for parenthood when they learned of the boy; they have graduated from college, settled into a job, got married, and are about to buy a house.
“We have nothing to lose by having a child that has really changed our lives dramatically,” he said.
When Kevin Barhydt was 19 years old, the woman he met was pregnant. Immediately, he was “panic and extremely scared”.
“There isn’t a ‘gee, let’s make a pros and cons list,’” said Mr Barhydt, now a 60-year-old analyst and author in New York. At that time, he had a difficult life. He was abused, he dropped out of high school and he is struggling with alcoholism. They don’t have a place to look after a newborn, and he doesn’t even have the money to pay for an abortion, he said.
Mr Barhydt’s second experience of abortion came about a year later with another woman, while he was still struggling with his addiction. He described that time in his life as “terrible.”
“The idea of having a baby just seems crazy,” he said.
Both abortions pushed him on a “healing trajectory”, Mr. Barhydt said. He attended college and found a stable job. He is married and has two sons, he has been sober for more than three decades now. Those memories still hurt anyway.
“Do I ask for forgiveness? Yes, I have,” said Mr Barhydt. “Do I wish there was a way to keep my kids? Right. Do I regret my decision then? Nothing.”