Sunday, December 4, 2016

Down Syndrome

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Yahoo! Parenting columnist Hallie Levine is making waves–for saying she wishes she would have aborted her daughter.

Levine’s daughter Johanna, 7, has Down syndrome.

Her article directly targets the new Ohio law, which banned the abortion of babies with Down syndrome. It’s one of just two states with that kind of law on the books.

As many as 85% of babies with Down syndrome were aborted, according to a study–hence why Ohio felt the need to step in.

But while Levine loves her daughter, and often raves about her in her parenting column–but she said that, had she known her daughter would have aborted her.

“If I had had a prenatal diagnosis, I would have obtained an abortion. Today, I am beyond grateful that I didn’t. But I cannot ever in any circumstances imagine insisting others not have that right,” she wrote.

She continued: “My daughter arrived a month early, with a shock of dark hair, a huge, lusty cry — and a diagnosis of Down syndrome. An hour after she was born, a team of specialists were in the delivery room informing me Johanna had an intestinal obstruction that would require immediate surgery, as well as a suspected heart defect. I just stared at them in absolute shock, thinking, ‘I never signed up for this.'”

When it comes to the anti-abortion law in Ohio, however, she thinks women should be able to make their own decision–even though Levine admits she would have regretted aborting her daughter.

“There are many folks — some of whom are in the Down syndrome community — who look at my story and point to it smugly as a tale of a woman who thought having a child with Down syndrome would be her worst nightmare, but triumphed. But my relationship with my daughter was something that had to develop on its own; if I had had a prenatal diagnosis, but had been forced to continue the pregnancy like Ohio legislators want, it would have been a disaster.”

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