By Thaddeus M. Baklinski
PORTSMOUTH, UK, January 12, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Lisa Chamberlain, 25, pregnant with dicephalus twins who have separate heads but share a single body, is determined to allow her conjoined daughters a chance at life, despite doctors advice to kill the children in utero.
If the babies survive after birth, they will become the first ever living British dicephalus twins.
“Some people might look at me and say ‘You’re going to give birth to a freak’ but I don’t care because I feel blessed,” Chamberlain told the UK Sun.
“To me, my twins are a gift from God and we’re determined to give them their chance of life,” she said, adding, “I’ve even given the twins names – Layla and Kelsey – because I think they’re going to be little girls. I’ve been told that 75 per cent of Siamese twins are.”
Lisa and Mike Pedace, who are both Catholics, said doctors advised Lisa to kill the children after a routine scan revealed that they had the extremely rare condition.
“Some might think my twins are strange but to me they’re just special. Even some of my family say they’d have an abortion but I hate the word and I just don’t think it’s up to us to decide,” Lisa said.
Mike, who said they had been trying for a baby for seven years, told The Sun: “We just want everyone to give us a chance. We know it’s going to be very tough and we’re prepared for that as much as we can be. We’ve struggled so long for the chance to have children. Now that we’ve got that chance we’re not going to throw it away.”
Mike said he and Lisa were encouraged by the example of Abigail and Brittany Hensel, 18-year-old dicephalus twins in the US, who though they share a liver and rib-cage, lead virtually normal lives.
A UK Telegraph report indicated that doctors at St. Mary’s Hospital in Portsmouth say that they will not know how many organs the twins share until the twentieth week of pregnancy. They have only detected a single heartbeat so far, but it is possible that another one may emerge.
Michaela Aston of the pro-life group LIFE, the UK’s leading provider of crisis pregnancy and post-abortion counseling, commended Lisa on her decision.
“This young mother is an example to us all as she unconditionally welcomes her twins into the world,” Aston said in Press Association report.
“She knows it will be difficult but she is focusing on the fact that she is already the proud mother of these babies and accepts them however they are. They may not be perfect in the eyes of the world but they are fully human and as such should have the same value and right to life as any other human beings.
“It is sad that this young mother must face a society which is increasingly unable to accept babies who are not genetically perfect and which may judge her for allowing her twins to continue to live,” Aston concluded.