I typed four separate blurbs here. I didn't like any of them. I have a lot I'd like to say, but I feel like there's nothing I should be saying. I really think it's Emily's job to do the talking in this case. And she talks quite a bit here.
People's reactions on Emily are quite divided lately (and I expected that), so let me ask: where do you stand? Is she being stupid or responsible? Is she being selfish or selfless? Is her conviction on this matter strength, or is it weakness? Share your thoughts, but let's maybe try to keep the flame wars to a minimum.
Rain, all characters and all other aspects of the story are copyright material belonging to me.
Also, I've said this before, but I'm trying to raise money for SRS, and I'm still struggling with it. If you can help, it would be most welcome. If not, don’t worry about it. I totally understand (you don't need to feel bad or apologize if you can’t).
There's no wrong decision here. To the extent that she might not be able to take care of it properly for economic reasons or lack of skill, that's down to societal deficiencies - ie, the fact that poverty exists in the first place, the fact that young mums are discriminated against and structurally disadvantaged, the fact that parents are left to raise their kids alone rather than with the support of the whole community - not her judgement.
Her mother phrased it terribly, but there's an element of truth to it. All life is a gamble; you pay your money and take your choice.
There is an outcome where she's just left to fend for herself. It's not likely to be a pretty one.
There's also an outcome where she gets a lot of support and still manages to get a decent job and move off of that support into a relatively normal life.
The balance of probabilities between the two, given the teen mothers I've known, is slanted massively towards the former rather than the latter. This also seems strongly implied by her mother's statements if nothing else - and I find it hard to believe that her friends will support her economically during the critical period.
If she's prepared to live with the former, can be at least somewhat okay with it, then keeping it's not necessarily a bad choice. However, if she can't live with the former, then keeping it seems an atrocious choice.
Unless, that is, she can't live with an abortion either - in which case some chance of the latter outcome is better than a certainty of ending up with something she can't live with.
Is she being stupid or responsible? It's not necessarily a matter of intelligence as much as it is one of values and emotions.
Is she being selfish or selfless? Insofar as it places obligations on others, it seems selfish to me. In terms of caring for the child, it's selfless. However, I'm not sure that's her driving motivation in having it:
Is her conviction strength or is it weakness? She seems to want to have the kid in order to not be her mother. That seems like weakness to me, for all she may be choosing a harder life in the long run. Allowing herself to be defined by what her mother has or has not done - running from similarities. It's relatively easy to run from a present problem into a potentially much darker future. Not seeing the consequence until you run out of places to run and it's forced upon you.
The real kicker seems that she's young - and has no familiarity with how hard life can be in those sorts of respects. Nor of the joys that kids can apparently bring to some people. So, she doesn't necessarily have the information to meaningfully weight the probabilities and choose.
It's... a choice. A lot of the virtues relating to it depend upon what sort of person she is and what she can live with. If I were offering her advice... the easy advice would just be to tell her it's her call. However, if I'm honest, it would have to be to abort. I think on the whole people are likely to find it easier to kill than live with the consequences of not doing so.
Still, the contrary viewpoint is understandable, and not so strange to me that I don't empathise with it.
As an unplanned child with fantastic parents (who were 17 at the time), this hits really close to home.
@Spooks: my parents weren't much older when they had me so I know how you feel
That last speech bubble: Aww!
I think only time will tell whether keeping the child is a good idea or not. But, right now, she wants the child.
Getting pregnant was definitely a bad move but that doesn't automatically mean she should abort. The thing I'd note is that she seems like the sort of person in high school who doesn't plan/want to go to college, in these circumstances keeping the baby will only be a bad thing in terms of fatherhood. Most 18-19 year old guys don't exactly feel ready to take care of "someone else's baby" and the one responsible... let us just not talk about him anymore.
It's really admirable what Emily is trying to do but given her current station in life and the fact she doesn't really has the meaning to maintain herself and her baby I would think giving the baby up for adoption would be the best.
People are more appreciative of the joy they get from things they had to work for, between that and her exisiting stance on motherhood Emily will at least be an extremely loving mother, in my opinion.
But I'm worried for her. I know quite a lot of occasions when a young, unplanned pregnancy has turned out well (I was one of them) but these cases have all had one thing in common; external support. Whether from the baby's father, the mother's relatives, or even in a few cases the mother's foster parents, the clincher seems to be "How much support can they expect?"
Emily has Fara. (Rain, Maria, etc. could provide emotional support and small amounts of babysitting etc. but in terms of responsible adults who can offer advice, aid and financial support... Just Fara.) What we've seen of Fara's personality suggests that she'll do all she can to help, but that could actually jeopardise her job.
Brother Arthur is a man who called holding hands and the occasional hug "lewd conduct". Helping out a student who will almost certainly be expelled when this is reveal, who had pre-marital sex... After all the material we've had of him as "evil incarnate" I can honestly see him firing her for it.
Aside from the difficulty of getting a new job in the first place, what if that job requires her to move? Emily will either have to leave all she knows and come with them (which, depending on state laws and how old she is could be illegal) or be left without her one adult support. And, much as her confidence is growing, this could crush Rain; starting over somewhere new with the lies, (why her documents say Ryan, why she has to be so careful and pernickity about things), and the friend finding and the rush of male attention... I don't know if she can cope yet. She's happy right now because she's finally got a therapist who takes her seriously and will help her but one thing Rain has taught me is that happiness, no matter how genuine can be fragile.
@Jaebird: You're thinking of Father Quenton, Brother Arthur is alright.
@George: Oops XD I was originally going to say something about Brother Arthur as a potential supporter (cut it because it was too long) and somehow wrote his name in place of Father Quenton's.
i'm mostly just wondering how she, as a pregnant cis person who - i think - doesn't know about some friends being trans - would be reacted to with the inevitable gendering of the kid waaaaay before they're old enough to express their gender identity.
When it comes to someone else's life, there's never a "stupid" or "weak" position to take. I was wanted and planned...but my first child wasn't planned, but was still wanted. In this case, Emily wants the child. To me, that alone says enough.
Let me clarify some things... Growing up in a man's body for far too many years of my life, knowing I was transgender and believing I was unable to do anything about it...there are a great number of things I've learned. First and foremost is that to do something that goes against your convictions so strongly as having an abortion or giving up a child for adoption (which I could NEVER do; it hurts like hell that I've been separated from the two my ex-wife brought into this world)...it drives you crazy. It eats at you. And if you have even a little bit of a maternal streak in you, regardless of your reasons, then the thought of killing a child or giving them up is something that will haunt you for the rest of your life.
I had to give up my self-judgments in order to start estrogen. I had to give up comparing myself to others. So in no way is either decision "stupid" or "weak", in my humblest of opinions... Everyone has strength, and every decision requires strength. It isn't a matter of weakness or intelligence... Everything always will come down to a single question.
At the end of the day, if you make this choice, will you be able to live with yourself?
I think it all comes down to circumstances here and you value. What's important the person and they want to accomplish in life.
Given Emily age and wants to achieved she's about the graduate from high school she might be in a good position or a bad position. Again, we don't know what her objectives are in life.
My mother was ( and still is) a drunken and abusive asshole. She has said numerous times that I was an accident. But whatever, I have a fucking awesome dad who loves me. And on an unrelated note: "Having an abortion? Save yourself the trouble and just eat it!" - Insanity Wolf
@WingedReaper777: On your unrelated note: DO NOT EAT MY SANDWICH
On a comic-related unrelated note: THANK YOU for not screwing up "intents and purposes." Every time I see "intensive purposes" or "should of done" it's like my retinas become chalkboards and *skreeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee*
I favor life, but I don't oppose the free will of rational minds. Emily has the right to do what she wants with her body, and if she wants to raise her baby she can, even if it means she has to make sacrifices.