What is all this "Naming Babies" stuff?
"I notice that some women have information in their signature files and on their homepages about the baby they aborted - they have given it a name - why do they do this? It seems a little strange to me..."
"I'm new to this site and I see women have blinkies and names and dates in their signature file about their 'angels' - isn't this a pro-life thing? I thought this site was neutral!"
These are a few of the questions we've received in the past about the message boards. As detailed below, some women, as part of their personal healing process, decide to give a name to the potential baby they did not have. This is a personal choice, and we encourage women to do what feels right to them. Some women do this, some do not.
Am I weird if I want to 'name' that baby??
No! - If you are new to this site, you may have noticed that some of the women here have decided to 'name' their potential babies lost through an abortion. Whether you choose to do this or not is totally up to you. It is not required that you think of your pregnancy as a "potential baby", or "name" it, for healing.
What we have discovered is that if a woman is having persistent trouble with guilt, or sadness after her abortion, or if she is suffering from PASS, part of the problem may be that she feels as if the pregnancy was a 'potential baby', and now that the pregnancy has ended, she is suffering from pregnancy loss feelings, just as if she had lost a baby through a miscarriage.
She may also be going through guilt, because she feels 'responsible' for ending the pregnancy, and ending what might have become an infant, if she had not interrupted the pregnancy. But because of the social stigma of abortion, she has no way to express these feelings of grief and loss. Plus, if she mentioned to anyone in real life that she'd had an abortion, and now was suffering from guilt and sadness over the loss of the potential baby, she'd most likely be given unhelpful responses such as:
"Well why did you have an abortion, if you wanted it?"
So at this website, we have created activities and ways for women who are feeling sadness at the loss of the potential baby to resolve these feelings. To see more explanation, and a list of ways to help with these feelings, see this section Grieving the loss of your baby. Some women also chose to terminate a planned and wanted pregnancy, because of problems with the fetus, or problems with the woman's health. In these situations, the women were definitely thinking of the pregnancy as a potential baby, and some had purchased baby items in anticipation of the birth, and may have already named the baby, even before the pregnancy ended. So for these women, memorial activities and grieving are an important part of healing from their abortion. We have many different message boards and sections of the site, so no matter which way you feel, you can find a place where you can express those feelings. You have the right to handle this in the way that feels best to you, whether it's naming or not naming the potential baby. We only ask that you please be respectful of women who may not hold the same view as you, when posting.
Am I weird if I DON'T want to 'name' that baby??
No! - Some women do not have these problems, and never feel a sense of loss or guilt as related to the ending of the pregnancy. Some women feel uncomfortable at the thought of 'naming' the baby that would have resulted, and don't even want to talk about it much. For them, their PASS problems may revolve around other issues, and the potential baby is not one of them. Some women do not consider the embryo or fetus to be a potential child, and that's fine. This is totally an individual matter, dependant on your own religious, scientific and social beliefs. If you choose to not think of the pregnancy as a 'potential baby', that is fine, and no one will criticize you or judge you for those feelings. One thing we are adamant about here, is that each woman is entitled to her own experience, and her own feelings about her experience. There is no 'right' or 'wrong' view on this matter, there is only your view, and what feels right to you. We have many different message boards and sections of the site, so no matter which way you feel, you can find a place where you can express those feelings. You have the right to handle this in the way that feels best to you, whether it's naming or not naming the potential baby. We only ask that you please be respectful of women who may not hold the same view as you, when posting.