We began this thread in the aftermath of the Indiana State Legislature’s decision to remove disability in the offspring as a legal reason for termination of pregnancy Go here to read the full text of the legislation).
I asked readers for their opinion of what they would do if they were a doctor practicing in Indiana. This proved to be an overwhelming or unanswerable question. (In any case, I got no answers!). Then I rephrased the question: If you found yourself or your partner pregnant and the fetus had a genetic disorder, and you were planning to discuss the issue with your doctor, how would you like your doctor to treat you? My hope was that wording the question this way would make it more accessible – since everyone has been a patient at one time or another, and we all have expectations of how we’d like to be treated by the doctor.
I received an extended reply from a woman named Anne, who is the mother of a child with severe disabilities. Although Anne was prepared to accept abortion for various other reasons, she equated termination of pregnancy on the grounds of disability in the offspring with repudiating the value of her own living child with disabilities: “If people like [my son] can’t depend on their own mothers or on their [physicians] to defend, fiercely, their place in this world, then we’ve failed.”