Don’t be fooled: Dads count in abortion issue

by Roxane B. Salonen

Sidewalk

Abortion proponents would love for you to buy into the deception that abortion is a woman’s issue and that men have no right to be involved.

I implore you not to fall for this falsity. Every person in existence was conceived with the help of a father, and last I checked, fathers are all male without exception.

When it comes to abortion, men do matter.

Recently, I’ve witnessed several “saves” on the sidewalk in front of our state’s only abortion facility. A “save” constitutes the certain turning away from abortion by an abortion-vulnerable person.

I have always heard about “saves,” but until recently, I had not been directly involved in one. In the two that I took part in through sidewalk prayer advocacy, each was heavily influenced by the father of the child. In other words, if not for a father understanding his child was about to be killed, and stepping forward to say, “We can do this despite all the obstacles,” at least two children would not be wiggling in their mothers’ wombs in our city today.

The mothers were scared, but the fathers stepped up to offer protection. On some level, they grasped the gravity of the situation, and understood that rather than be complicit in their own child’s death, they could be a hero, and change the course of their family’s history – and our world’s history – forever.

Each week on the sidewalk, men who are prayer advocates show up with signs, hoping to discourage women from entering the facility where children’s lives will be ended. They cover the sidewalk in protection. They are like soldiers on the front lines of the battlefield.

Some come every week like clockwork. Others show up when they can with their big hearts and hope.

Men like Greg. A while back, he joined us, and I noticed that he had his headphones on. Later, he explained that he was listening in on a conference call, microphone muted, but despite a busy workday, he wanted to be there for a while, to try to make a difference.

Greg became a hero to me that day. We live in such a busy world, but despite being in the middle of a workday filled with obligations, he was willing to do a little multitasking to take a chance on saving a life.

At some point, a young lady was circling the block in her car, eyeing the facility and looking for a parking spot. Greg raced over to where she was to try to talk her out of going through with her appointment. Although she ended up going into the facility, I assured Greg that God saw his heart, and that the young lady would never forget him.

We cannot always convince the women of the negative lasting impact of what they are about to do, and that real support and help exists, but the image of our presence remains.

I’ve also seen fathers quietly weep when they could not prevent their girlfriend or wife from entering the facility. They may have accompanied her there out of a sense of obligation, but deep down, they know. While it’s true some women are coerced by the father, other fathers feel helpless and don’t want the abortion.

Recently, I read an article written by a father involved in the “Silent No More” campaign. In 2006, his girlfriend procured an abortion against his will. He is now married to another woman and has two other sons. But the abortion continues to haunt him.

Ken shared about how he tried to stop the abortion, and how angry he was with God that he couldn’t. “I started drinking heavily to the point where I was driving home drunk, not caring who would get hurt by my carelessness…I couldn’t come to terms that my son was gone.”

Despite his new life and the healing that has taken place since, he wrote that he still grieves his first son, Jacob, and that his wife has “adopted” Jacob as her own.

“In 2016, after years of pain, I went through a healing program at Surrendered Hearts,” Ken wrote. “My family and I had a wonderful birthday candlelight vigil for Jacob’s 10th birthday in November, which gave me healing as well. It’s because of my wife and sons that I am Silent No More.”

Men are made to protect their women and children. I encourage all men to rise up against the atrocity of abortion, and resist valiantly the erroneous message that men are not needed.

Men, we do need you, more than ever, and we are counting on you. You were made for such a time and issue as this.

Roxane B. Salonen, a wife and mother of five, is a local writer, as well as a speaker and radio host for Real Presence Radio. She writes for The Forum and for CatholicMom.com. Reach her at roxanebsalonen@gmail.com.