Unwanted Mom Agonizes over Unwanted Child
As a girl in a poor village in Ukraine who struggled in school, Maria had tried in vain to make her mother – the director of the area school – proud. Now she was pregnant and unmarried.
Nevermind that the pregnancy was the result of rape. Maria’s mother could only think about family disgrace and insisted on an abortion.
Maria wanted to put the baby up for adoption. Her life had not been kind to her, and she didn’t want to bring the baby into it. As a young adult, her first employer failed to pay her. Her second boss not only cheated her of wages but drugged and robbed her. Her next job paid well but was far from the village – which meant she had to walk home through a park, where a foreigner raped her.
She did not know she was pregnant until five months later. The baby was due on Dec. 25.
“It’s a shame for the family!” her mother told her. “What will people say? How could I look neighbors in the eye?”
Her mother yelled at her to get an abortion, legally possible in Ukraine through the seventh month of pregnancy. Instead, Maria decided to go into hiding in a rented apartment.
Her mother continued to revile her and arranged for an abortion, forcing Maria to the hospital. When Maria continued to resist at the hospital, her mother screamed at her:
“It’s a shame for the family! What will people say? How could I look neighbors in the eye?”
When Maria came down with pneumonia in her ninth month, her doctor told her about the Mother and Child Center at a native Christian ministry’s shelter called Father’s House.
“At our center, Maria met young women who had faced the same difficult choice as her, had decided to keep their babies and were learning how to be good mothers,” the ministry director said. “On Dec. 30, Maria gave birth to a beautiful baby boy. After five days in the hospital, she moved to the Mother and Child Center with her son.”
Workers helped her care for the baby and spent much time in prayer with her. Her mother found being a grandmother diminished all other concerns and had quality conversations with Maria, the other young mothers and the Father’s House workers.
“God was at work,” the ministry director said. “On Jan. 6, Holy Night [Christmas for Eastern churches], Maria said for the first time she would not place her son for adoption. There is still a lot of work to be done with building of a relationship between Maria and her mother and with living arrangements, but the main thing is they have decided to be a family.”
Workers at Father’s House have had in-depth discussions with Maria and her mother about Christ’s redeeming sacrifice, just as community engagement projects throughout the country open the way to gospel proclamation. Because of your support, such projects are able to help transform the lives of women such as Maria and their families; please consider a gift today to bring such programs to troubled souls.