If we want women to respond to pregnancy in a healthy way, we must respond to pregnant women in a healthy way, no matter what the circumstance.
We have no idea who just found out they’re pregnant with a child. It could be your child. It could be someone you know and love. It could be the woman ringing up your groceries.
Furthermore, we don’t know who feels they should abort because they’re too young to be a parent. We don’t know who might rush out and get an abortion tomorrow because they were hurt or misled by an inappropriate comment today.
Off-handed comments and general insensitivity from passerby (or worse – from loved ones) can be mortal blows to women facing crisis pregnancies…literally.
We must be delicate and encouraging when we interact with all people, but especially pregnant women in today’s society.
In crisis situations, close family and friends can be shocked and hurt by the news of a pregnancy.
But what is really shocking here? Are people shocked because God is blessing the Mother with a beautiful new baby that’s about to enter the world? Or are they shocked at the fact that someone was intimate and seemingly making irresponsible decisions?
What is really hurtful here? Are people hurt because this precious new life, full of smiles and giggles and love, is living and growing inside of the Mother? Or are they hurt because they are confused and disappointed that someone was intimate and seemingly making irresponsible decisions?
Let’s separate feelings about the act from feelings about the baby, please.
Regardless of what we think about the situation, and regardless of how the child was conceived, if there is a child developing inside a woman’s womb, that child is a part of God’s plan – period.
This is NOT the time to reprimand a mother for what you may be tempted to see as poor life choices or mistakes.
This is not about you. It’s not even really about the mother anymore in a way. Because once a woman is pregnant, her life’s focus is shifted to something other than herself. Whether she wants to realize it or not, her body is already taking nutrients from her nourishment and speedily passing them on to her baby. The baby gets first dibs. And her body is already programmed to support and encourage the growth of this amazing child.
Babies are selfishness erasers.
God knows this is a beautiful thing, and He uses motherhood as a gift to women, teaching them daily to live for another. Regardless of whether someone will be parenting or placing for adoption, motherhood is great for the spiritual and emotional growth of women.
When you are in a situation where you have the opportunity to speak with someone in a crisis pregnancy early on, count it as a blessing! God needs your love! He needs your kind, non-judgmental support!
It can be tempting to withhold support from a mother in crisis out of fear or anger. Sometimes people think that supporting a mother in crisis means that we’re forgiving, tolerating, or even encouraging sinful actions that may have been committed.
But why aren’t we forgiving those actions? If she has sinned and is truly sorry, Christ has already forgiven her sins. We need to catch up.
Women in crisis pregnancies absolutely need to know they will still have food, clothing, and shelter provided for them and their baby. They deserve to know they will have their needs met. Beyond that, they desperately need to be loved.
Please don’t kick women out in their time of need – physically, emotionally, or spiritually. They need YOU.
And their child may be depending on you.
“Christ has no body but yours, no hands, no feet on earth but yours. Yours are the eyes with which He looks compassion on this world. Yours are the feet with which He walks to do good. Yours are the hands with which He blesses all the world.” -St. Teresa of Avila
What would Christ have to say to pregnant women in crisis in their time of need? What would He do for these women?
Be Christ to these women. Help them to separate their own circumstances and possible past mistakes from the baby.
And by all means possible, love and cherish pregnant women so they are able to have an opportunity to love and cherish their children.
If you’re looking for loving support for a friend or loved one experiencing a crisis pregnancy, contacting a local pregnancy resource center is a great first step! Other ministries may be able to help as well, including but not limited to:
- Catholic Charities – connecting women with local resources & support within each diocese
- Mary Garden Showers – Catholic organization empowering women in crisis pregnancies & helping them celebrate new life through the love & support of showers
- Talk About Adoption – information, networking, and support for women considering adoption
- Rachel’s Vineyard – healing for Mothers who have already or previously chosen abortion
And if you have a heart for serving women in crisis pregnancies, consider plugging in with an organization like the ones listed above! Loving support and mercy, rather than judgement, are desperately needed now more than ever for these Mothers & families.
What are some other ways we can lovingly support women in crisis pregnancies?
Copyright 2016 Kaitlyn Mason