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Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Partial Solution to Abortion Dilemma

It amazes me that anyone is surprised by a study by the Christchurch School of Medicine and Health Sciences, claiming that women who have had abortions have higher risk of mental problems in later years.

The long term study of 500 women, claims that women who have had abortions have significantly higher rates of depression, anxiety, substance abuse and suicidal behavior than those who had not.

The authors of the study claim that all pre-existing tendency to mental problems was factored in.

When a woman becomes pregnant, all sorts of physiological and psychological changes begin. Add to this the huge amount of cultural, spiritual, religious and emotional significance surrounding pregnancy and childbirth.

Is it any wonder that an operation that cuts this process dead, can leave mental scars with many women?

I am actually a supporter of safe legal abortion. To put it crudely, it's a property rights issue. A woman's body is her property to do with as she sees fit. At least until it reaches viability, any foetus she carries is part of her property.

I don't believe however, that we should kid ourselves over the damage abortion can do. Sucking a foetus out of a womb is not the same as removing an ingrown toenail.

There is an obvious partial solution to the abortion dilemma.

On average, 17,000 abortions are performed annually in NZ. Thirty years ago there were some 4,000 adoptions a year in this country. There was actually a shortage of parents to take children.

Today there are less than 100 adoptions of NZers, by NZers per year. There is a huge shortage of babies for adoption. This is compounded by an infertility epidemic.

The welfare state and the DPB have contributed hugely to this, but so have increasingly common anti adoption attitudes.

Perhaps the law of supply and demand should be allowed to work more effectively here. Maybe more kids would end up in loving homes and fewer in blood filled buckets.


Blogger Xavier said...

Could you please clarify and justify your assertion that there is 'an infertility epidemic'?

I'd like to see what evidence you have

6:26 PM  
Blogger Trevor Loudon said...

I'm surprised Xavier, I thought this was common knowledge. Am I misinformed?

8:12 PM  
Blogger MavXP said...

Our nations birthrate is low, based largely on the societal changes that have occurred since the invention, and wide usage of, the 'pill'. The pill is largely responsible for effecting 'womens liberation'. (This is not the same as womens right to vote BTW).

They can now choose to have a family, or not. Choose to have a multitude of partners before 'settling down' or not. I wouldnt be suprised if it could also be directly correlated to the decreasing appeal of marriage in society, but I digress.

However, all that aside, i think 'infertility' is largely due to fact that the age of a womens first time pregnancy is rising. Women are choosing to start families later in life, after everything else is 'sorted'. Education -check, OE - check, Mr. Right - check, House -check, Finances -check. OK ready for kids! Of course, by the time all this has happenend, they have missed the most fertile period of their lives (late teens -mid twenties).

I think there are also long term side effects of the pill that are still being discovered. Such as womens drop in libido due to taking the pill, so even after coming off the pill sex drive is low for a sustained period of time until testosterone levels build up again. (testosterone in women drives their libido as much as in men). So even while they could have kids, they just arent interested in the 'physics' involved in doing so because of the effect the pill is/ has had on them.

New Zealand, particularly among the 'middle classes', has a declining birthrate, whereas the poorer sectors of society typically continue to have high rates of fertility. Overall, though we are barely breaking even (births - deaths). This is also why we have a problem paying for our superannuation bill into the near future, when the baby boomers retire. And, also the reason why the govenment has been keen on immigration from Asia through the 90's.
More kids = more workers = more tax revenue.

3:21 AM  
Blogger MavXP said...

this is an incredibly opinionated article, but he makes no bones about being right wing, and its actually a fun read. Some of the points are actually interesting too - I post because of the relevance to the declining birthrate discussed above.

3:13 PM  
Blogger Oliver said...

And then he talks about economic freedom...

6:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And then Oliver talks about "Rights" and "justice"....

3:39 AM  
Blogger Xavier said...

'An infertility epidemic' is very different to people choosing not to have children. Infertility as a word implies an inability to have children, caused by some exogenous factor.

4:13 PM  
Blogger Trevor Loudon said...

I researched tis some years ago Xavier. I think about one in 12 couples have trouble conceiving. Sperm count levels have fallen in the western world for years, if memmory serves me right. Also diseases such as chlamydia have effected female fertility. Women are having children later which also effects fertility levels.

7:52 PM  

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