If there's a pregnancy, there's a father. It seems there's an unspoken influence in the issue of abortion, and we must recognize it. Who do women turn to for advice first? Who do women find most influential when facing this difficult life decision? At Care Net, after our research over the last few years, we no longer have to wonder.
Three-quarters, or 74 percent, of men reported that their partner talked with them before having an abortion. This finding came from our survey of over 1,000 men. We now know that 38 percent of men said they had the most influence on the women's decision to abort. Women said the same thing in an independent survey. Make no mistake, there's a battle for life in this moment of decision, and men must speak up.
Dave Andrusko, writing for LifeNews, serves as the editor of National Right to Life News and is the author/editor of several books on abortion topics, recently published a post titled, If Some Men Were Responsible Fathers, Abortions Would Drop Almost 40%. In his post, he cites in partnership with Lifeway Research found that “Nearly four-in-10 men with either a girlfriend or a wife who had an abortion say they had the most influence on the decision to terminate the pregnancy."
Sponsored by Care Net, the study was of 1,000 men “who had a female partner get an abortion and knew of their significant other’s pregnancy before their baby was terminated.” Three-quarters (74%) of men reported that their partner talked with them before having an abortion.
The report revealed that 38% of men said they had the most influence on the decision to abort. This was followed by 18% saying it was a medical professional and 14% saying it was the woman’s mother. Only 4% said it was the abortion provider. “When we surveyed women who had an abortion, they indicated men were the most influential factor in their decision,” said Roland Warren, President and CEO of Care Net. “Care Net recognized that despite this influence, the role of men had not yet been explored. This new study directly examines their feelings and experiences when the decision to have an abortion was made.”
Additional insights from the survey highlighted:
- 42% of men either strongly urged or suggested that their partners proceed with the abortion
- 31% refrained from offering advice
- 8% strongly opposed the idea of abortion
How do all of these stats bear out in practice and life? Great question. Glad you asked. Exhibit A: Lisa Hogan, executive director of the Sav-A-Life Vestavia pregnancy resource center in Alabama, told the Christian Post about the great efforts that her clinic has made, “working very hard” to better involve fathers in the decision-making process.
The research tells us fathers already are involved in the process, but Hogan is equipping men to answer the call to fatherhood. From attending those dire first appointments and providing dads with the one-on-one skills and counseling training needed, she and her center are helping men truly have an educated and encouraging voice in the process, intending to achieve better long-term outcomes for the child when fathers are actively engaged.
Hogan's clinic sees over 1,000 fathers annually. She shares the message that if the mother is pregnant, the father is already a parent. “When a mom calls to make an appointment for a pregnancy test or an ultrasound, specifically if they are abortion-minded … we encourage them to bring the father of the baby to the appointment,” said Hogan.
“We have male advocates who are trained to meet with [the fathers], one-on-one, to have a conversation, to coach them through this, to give them a voice in the process." She says, “We know that if the dad is engaged, that we’re going to have a better outcome long-term in the life of the child." At Care Net, we know the father's influence on the family is great—not just in these life or death moments—but the father is the greatest influence on his family long-term as well. Dad, you have a voice, use it for life.