Picture this in your mind. Try to put yourself in her place.
She just got the news that her worst fears have come true: she is pregnant. More often than not she is alone. Her partner may be unsupportive, uninformed, or entirely absent.
She may try to mask her overwhelming feelings, or she may be completely undone. Inside, however, her heart is breaking. She is wrestling with fear or anger; she is facing disappointment; she just wants things to go back to ‘normal’.
We at CareNet believe that someone needs to be there for her.
That someone doesn’t necessarily need to have a therapist’s license or a degree in psychology. That someone doesn’t need to be the smartest or have the most soothing voice.
Instead, she truly needs that someone to be a person who listens and cares. It’s that simple.
Let me give you a few examples.
Susie was a senior in high school, active in her church, and had trusted in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior as a child. Her goal in life was to be a missionary in a foreign country. She had a problem: she suspected she may be pregnant and she was not yet married.
Susie nervously shared with us about taking two home pregnancy tests and that each time, the lines were almost too light to detect. Susie stated that if she was really pregnant she would have to get an abortion, because it would be a bad witness to have a child out of marriage. Susie felt that she couldn’t tell her parents that she’d been sexually active, especially because they were leaders and very well-respected at their local church.
Her client advocate looked at her and gently challenged her with this question: “I want to make sure I got this correct. You feel you need to get an abortion because of the bad witness it would be to those you want to minister to, correct? Wouldn’t having an abortion be a ‘bad witness’?”
The look in her eyes was as if a light bulb had turned on and she said, “It never occurred to me.”
CareNet’s nurse manager confirmed Susie’s pregnancy and determined how far along she was through ultrasound and Susie decided that day to carry her baby to term. After much thought and prayer she chose parenting over adoption. What a thrill it was when the new mom stopped by the center and introduced our staff to her precious son. We watched her face fill with pride and love as he stumbled around the room.
Nancy was in her early 20’s. She came into the center needing a referral to get an abortion. Her last pregnancy was fresh in her mind. She lost the baby at 6 months gestation. She was emotionally drained and felt she could not go through that again. By the time she admitted to herself that she really was pregnant five months had passed. Margaret realized that her emotional low was because she was fast approaching the stage of pregnancy that her other child had not survived.
The only thing Margaret knew to do was to meet her emotional, spiritual, and physical needs as well as she could. Margaret and those at the Center began to intercede in prayer. She also befriended Nancy and introduced her to a local church where a young girl also befriended her. We watched as God softened her heart and took away the fear. Nancy began to feel that she could go through this again, she just needed support and someone to lean on.
She called Margaret on December 31st. Her little boy survived and so did she. Nancy called to thank us and exclaimed, “Do you realize that you saved a life?” Margaret politely explained that no, God was the one who had saved a life.
Linda was raising her 16 year-old granddaughter Debbie. Debbie had just told her she was pregnant. Linda had already raised her own children and now two grandchildren. She was overwhelmed with this information and demanded Debbie, I quote, “get rid of the problem.” Chris listened to Linda while Margaret sat in with Debbie.
Chris found Linda to just be a worn out, over worked, loving grandmother. All she needed was for someone to listen and ask good questions. She began to see on her own that her God was there and He would work out all of these problems how He saw fit. Debbie needed a shoulder to cry on. She had been put into the position of having to defy her grandmother, she would carry the baby to term. Debbie had seen the emotional affects of her mother who had an abortion and did not want to put herself through that.
When the four of them came together to talk, Linda apologized to her granddaughter and immediately the relationship began to mend. Through our referral system we were able to help both grandmother and granddaughter by placing Debbie in a Southern Baptist Maternity Home. God works in mysterious ways. Debbie did loose her child through miscarriage, but He used this situation to mend relationships and mature a young lady.
Melinda came to the center for a pregnancy test and abortion information. This was her second pregnancy and when her test came out positive she kept saying, “I can’t do this by myself again.” She had repeated that statement so often Chris finally questioned her, “What is it you can’t do by yourself again? Carry a baby to term or raise another child by yourself?” She stated that she could not raise another child by herself.
She felt so defeated and run down by the choices she had made in life. Once she confirmed that it was not the pregnancy that was her main concern, but single parenting, her counselor offered her the unthinkable option of adoption. Melinda was open to having Chris bring in someone who had placed their child for adoption to talk with her. With that opening she immediately got up and had Anita call Rita. You could see God’s hand all over this. Rita had just come in from a trip and was available right then and there.
God works in mysterious ways. Melinda and Chris talked about Jesus Christ while they waited for Rita. By the time Melinda walked out the door that day, she had a small piece of hope. We worked with Melinda for about a month before she made her final decision. She chose life. That little boy is as round and pudgy as he can be. Please keep Melinda in your prayers – she needs Jesus Christ in her life.
Linda was raising her 16 year-old granddaughter Debbie. Debbie had just told her she was pregnant. Linda had already raised her own children and now two grandchildren. She was overwhelmed with this information and demanded that Debbie “Get rid of the problem.”
Debbie found CareNet through a Google search and convinced her grandmother to come along to the appointment. Our client advocate found Linda to just be a worn out, over worked, loving grandmother. All she needed was for someone to listen and ask good questions.
Through counseling, Linda began to see on her own that God was indeed there and He would work out all of these problems how He saw fit. Debbie needed a shoulder to cry on. If she had been put into the position of having to defy her grandmother, she would choose to carry the baby to term. Debbie had seen the emotional affects of her own mother having an abortion and did not want to put herself through that.
After confirming Debbie’s pregnancy through ultrasound, the two came together to talk with the support and moderation of our client advocate and nurse manager. Linda apologized to her granddaughter and immediately the relationship began to mend. Through our referral system we were able to help both grandmother and granddaughter by referring Debbie to a trusted Maternity Home.
Mary was in her mid-40’s. She came to the center several months ago carrying a deep pain that was rooted in the decision she and her husband had made to abort their first child before they were married. She had trusted in Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior, but knew she had disobeyed Him. She stated that she lived with shame and guilt every day of her life. Mary was emotionally depleted; everything she saw, read, and did somehow reminded her of her past. After much planning on his part, her husband decided to leave her with their three other children. Mary was devastated and alone.
Mary heard about a program at CareNet for people who had gone through abortion and made an appointment. For several months now, Chris has walked with her through HOPE, a scripture-led study for post-abortion healing, and God has faithfully begun to heal her! Mary is beginning to realize that nothing can pluck her from the hand of God. His promises of love are for the repentant of heart. She still has a way to go, but with God on her side, she will be victorious.
Jessica was referred to CareNet by a friend in Nashville and came to the center seeking material assistance. She was 17 years old, pregnant for the first time, and almost to full-term. Jessica shared how, upon first finding out that she was pregnant, she confronted the father-of-the-baby, asking him for money for an abortion but ultimately she “couldn’t go through with it.”
Jessica’s current boyfriend has expressed a desire to help raise the child even though he is not the biological father. They are living together with extended family because Jessica’s own mother, as she put it, “is a really bad drug addict,” and had been her entire life.
Jessica had endured a childhood of abuse, neglect, and instability, but had courageously decided to make the steps towards choosing a better life for her own child...which led her to our doors. Jessica met with one of our client advocates, who built trust with her through their counseling sessions. They asked open-ended questions, listened to her, helped her to make a plan, and covered her with prayer. Jessica enrolled in our MARY (Making A Responsible You) program and began attending classes immediately. Because she was so close to delivery, Jessica came to class every day (sometimes two classes a day!) and was able to earn enough “Mommy Bucks” to purchase the items that she needed from our boutique.
Jessica soon gave birth to a healthy little boy and she is now learning everyday how to be the mother that she wish she had growing up.