Men are the forgotten victims in abortion, says psych - even the ones you love to hate
ARLINGTON, Virginia, July 6, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Men are the forgotten victims of the abortion crisis, says one psychologist - but not in the way you think.
Although there are many men who, lacking any legal rights, suffer helplessly as their children are scheduled for an abortion, psychologist Gregory Hasek asked an audience at the National Right to Life Convention last week to think of the other group: the less likeable one.
The men who turn ice cold when told their girlfriends or wives are pregnant, who threaten them, directly or indirectly pushing them into an abortion, or who leave them at the abortion clinic door, never to be seen or heard from again - these are the ones that both pro-life and pro-choice have no trouble condemning.
And while their behavior is reprehensible, said Hasek, simply dismissing them as one of so many “worthless men” will do nothing but perpetuate the problem we face - a nation “full of trauma.”
“We have a lot of trauma in this country between males and females,” he said.
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Among other indicators of the level of silent suffering in America - such as the staggering rates of child abuse and abortions – is that one in three children grow up without fathers in the home, a fact that Hasek says has had an incalculable impact on men.
“They didn’t have a father in their life, they have no tools in the tool box,” he said. “Their father didn’t tell them how to be a man. So we’ve got to look at this when the abortion decision happens: if the guy didn’t have a father in their life, we have to look at that in an empathetic way to understand why they might have made that decision.”
Because men have been given little to no input on how to fulfill their masculine role, said the psychologist, tragically, they are left with only society’s increasingly negative views of how men act. “Men have bought into the conditioning of how to view men, too,” he said.
“This is the way culture views men: they fled.” Meanwhile, “they don’t view men in terms of what possible wounds might be behind that decision” - and so the wounds and their impact can often remain hidden from the man himself.
Inevitably, this dysfunction of masculinity winds up harming women: even the talking points of pro-abortion rhetoric, such as “freedom” and “choice,” Haske said, “is probably really rooted in trauma.”
Meanwhile, he said, men who do have a healthy sense of their role to protect and nurture others find their worlds turned upside down by an abortion - as do women.
During an abortion, said Haske, “men are not able to act on fight response to protect her and the child.”
“Something happens to that guy while he’s sitting in the waiting room. He’s not able to act on that fight response to go through the door, throw the doctors out of the way and say, No! Something dies inside of that male.”
“Meanwhile, the female is not able to act on her flight response. She’s laying there, she can’t get off the table. Everything in her is saying, “I wish I could run, I wish I could get out of here and save my child.
“There’s something that’s destroyed in both people. That’s why their faces look different when they come out.”
Hasek had started off his talk by showing images of Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky, without comment - only asking the audience to keep in mind how the images made them feel.
Later, he described the story of “Billy”: “When Billy was 15, he warned his father never to hit his mother and brother again.” Hasek challenged the audience to look at the picture differently through the lens of Clinton’s childhood trauma, with an abusive and alcoholic stepfather.
“We can help men ... to have empathy for the unborn by modeling empathy for their pain,” Hasek concluded. Otherwise, “men will remain stuck in the very same behaviors society complains about ... not only will we deepen the chasm of unresolved pain between the genders, it will feed the problem that got us here in the first place.”
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