What do most people mean when they talk about an abortion.

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1.        ABORTION


Doctors use the word ‘abortion’ to mean any death of a baby in the womb and its subsequent expulsion from the mother’s body.  This sometimes happens of its own accord and is usually called a miscarriage.  A miscarriage can be very upsetting to couples wanting a baby.  However, it may be so early in pregnancy that the woman is not even sure that she has conceived.

It is thought that a great number of early pregnancies end this way.  What most people mean when they talk about ‘an abortion’ is really a procured abortion.  This is when the foetus of growing child is deliberately killed and removed from the womb.

The term for abortion really means the premature expulsion of the foetus from the womb.  There is an operation to cause this.  There are two types of Abortion.    Natural and a miscarriage.  Abortion has been seen as a controversial issue for hundreds of years.  Many people believe too many people have abortions for reasons which are not enough to justify the ‘killing’ of a human being.  

The ‘Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act of 1990’ was introduced in order that there was a time limit of 24 weeks for the termination of pregnancy as opposed to the previous limit of 28 weeks.  For many centuries it was regarded as a serious crime to destroy a baby in its mother’s womb.  

The law passed by Parliament in 1967 stated that a pregnancy could be terminated by a doctor, if two doctors agreed on the following conditions:

  1. That to carry out the pregnancy would involve greater risk to the life or the physical of mental health of the mother, or of her existing children than if she had it terminated.

  1. That there was a substantial risk that if the child were born it would suffer serious

physical or mental handicap.


Development of the Foetus:

25th Day         - Heart beating

28th Day        - Legs and arms begin to grow

6th week        - Bones appear

7th week        - Fingers, thumbs forming

10th week        - Organs nearly formed

12th week        - Vocal chords, sexual organs form

16th week        - Half its birth length

5th month        - Eyebrows, Eyelashes begin to  form

Premature babies born as early as 25 weeks



Many people  believe that too many women have abortions for reasons which are not just enough to justify the killing of a human being.  Some people believe that a        woman  has the right to choose whether she will have an abortion or not, however, some believe this to be selfish.

Our right to choose is limited by the rights of other people.  For example, if this ‘right to choose’ were applied to another situation it would not be appropriate.  Very few people would say that an employer has the right to employ someone on the basis of their gender of the colour of their skin.  Also, the woman is not the only on affected by an abortion.  Family members and the father in particular, are greatly affected.  It has been said that the woman is the only person who should decide whether she should continue the pregnancy or not and that the woman’s partner has no right to prevent her having an abortion.  It can then be said that the woman then has no right to call on her partner for support and that both parents have the mutual right to abandon their responsibilities.  There are many reasons why someone might contemplate an abortion.  A lot of people think that abortion is okay in certain circumstances.  For example if the woman has been raped or on the grounds of incest.  But these type of circumstances only account for a very small percent of all abortions which are carried out.  Some people believe that it is the woman’s right, her life, her body, her choice.  Many people think that if abortion wasn’t legalised then it would force many women to go ‘underground’ and get dangerous operations done by unqualified people.

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Many young girls get abortions if they don’t feel that they are ready to be parents and that they have things like school to worry about.  Many women get abortions simply because a baby is inconvenient or they might not have the money to support a baby.

Many women think that they would have to give up their job or education if they were to have a baby.  But this is not true.  There are laws which prohibit discrimination on the basis of pregnancy.  Even though a woman may have to postpone some of her plans, the unborn’s ...

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