Abortion and motherhood are not in opposition to each other.
Most women are very cognizant of the demands of parenthood and want to have a family only when the time is right. They are concerned about their ability to provide a stable environment for themselves and their children. Often their decision to have an abortion is influenced by the desire to do the best they can for the child or children they already have. Most women having abortions (59% in the U.S.) already have at least one child. They fully understand the responsibility of parenting and what it would mean to have another child without having adequate resources to ‘do it properly’. This puts them in the best position to make a decision about whether to continue with a pregnancy.
This means that deciding to have an abortion can be a very unselfish and responsible act. In fact, abortion is about good motherhood because it enables women to take care of their existing families, and/or to have future children when they’re able to give them the love and resources that they need.
“Abortion is not the lesser of two evils. Abortion is profamily, prolife, moral, and good. For many millions of women, abortion has meant getting on with their lives and continuing to meet their responsibilities to themselves, their families, and society.” – Patricia W. Lunneborg, author of Abortion: A Positive Decision.
This myth also serves to create a false and sexist division between ‘normal’ women who are ‘natural’ mothers, and ‘abnormal’ women who do not become parents for a variety of personal reasons. Men’s choices about whether or not to have a family, for example, are rarely judged in the same way.
Royal Women’s Hospital, Victoria, Australia – Abortion: The Myths
Guttmacher Institute – Induced abortion in the U.S. (2017)