by annegarrett (2525 Posts), Sat May 14, 2005 02:45 pm
I think it is fair to say, that none of us are here because of any choice we made. We are here because preeclampsia or HELLP brought us here. That means that we represent all women and their families touched by preeclampsia. All meaning all women from those who are devout Catholics, to Hindus, to agnostics, atheists, Wiccans--all. Our common mission is the eradication of preeclampsia and the heartbreak it causes by forcing such choices.
That is why I refer to the Preeclampsia Foundation as having a "post-choice" agenda. By that I mean, whatever your perspective on "pro-life" v. "choice"--when you get to us, you have either actively or passively made the choice to have a baby and preeclampsia happens after that choice is made.
My personal politics are not relevant here--but suffice it to say--we evenly represent both sides of the political debate and we make every effort to negotiate that thin slice of common ground with respect to both sides and by focusing on the real menace--the disease.
Women in our situation are forced to make all sorts of untenable choices. I am thankful to have avoided many of the harrowing choices some of you all have had to make--whether or not to take a baby off life support, whether to deliver when you know your baby's chance of survival is small, whether to take a mother off life support, or whether or not to sign a DNR (do not resucitate order) for your wife or child. These are horrible choices and not ones made lightly by doctors or parents.
Since preeclampsia takes away all of our choices and presents us with some unbearable options--our job at the Preeclampsia Foundation is to unfailingly and unquestioningly provide support to ALL women and their families who have preeclampsia. What choices they make are their private choices. I know many of you who have made such choices. While we can pray, or meditate, or provide emotional support in our own way--as members of the PF--our obligation is to provide support without judgement.
There is nothing more heartbreaking than losing a child. I ask that we not add to that burden by presuming to know all that is in the hearts and minds of the women, their partners, and doctors forced to make such horrible decisions. Our stance on the issue of choice is that we cannot know--therefore--we cannot judge. It is our belief that all of these babies were wanted--and all of their losses profound.
I encourage you all to continue sharing such weighty and delicate issues on the forums. We encourage healthy debate. The rules are simple--we do not know everything--we cannot advise--we cannot judge--we can only speak for ourselves. Anything else may be removed at the discretion of the moderators or Forum Diva Laura.
Thank you all so much.