Published Oct 31, 2002
I think the subject line sums it up...
I believe you can.I am pro life and am an OB/GYNnurse. I have never had a real problem with it. I just do not apply for jobs at places like planned parenthood etc. I also do not participate in abortions of viable babies. but have cared for ones after and do not believe that that compromises my beliefs in any way.
i'd identify myself as pro-life in that i am anti-abortion on demand. i am not anti-birth control. I would not work at a place which required that i participate in abortions and have had no problems finding a job. i used to work in a Catholic hospital and i now work in a small non-sectarian level one facility where abortions are NOT done. i do feel that the abortion pts do not belong in l/d. there are a lot of nurses who do not want to care for them and do not tx them as kindly as they should. i worked in a facility briefly where ab's were done in l/d. like mark, i did not participate but did not feel emotionally "there" for the pt's i cared for post-ab. some of my co-workers were plain mean to these women.
That is my feeling on it. However, in my school program there is a definite sentiment among several instructors/lecturers that it's really not acceptable to NOT be pro-choice. And I wondered if that is the general sentiment on OB/GYN/L&D floors.
A nurse who guest lectured in one of my classes said that at her hospital you cannot refuse to participate in an abortion ... that the topic is covered in job interviews and if you have a problem with it you are basically told you should not be working in (or are not really welcome in) their women's and children's area.
(Side note: Is that even legal? I thought nurses had the right to refuse to take part in something like this if they are morally opposed...)
I am perfectly happy to take care of patients before and after. I just don't want to be forced to take part in the actual procedure, and I don't want to be "blackballed" because of my beliefs.
Thanks for your note...I look forward to reading other people's thoughts!
My "that's my feeling on it" was referring to Mark's post...just for clarification...
But I feel pretty much the same as you too, imenid37. And I don't ever want to pass judgment or be "mean" like the nurses you mentioned. Unfortunately, those mean/judgemental nurses are the ones who give the rest of us who are "pro-life" a bad rep.
It's just so weird to me that the same nurses who feel called to help bring babies into the world are also asked to "take them out," so to speak. I agree that abortion patients should not be in L&D, for a variety of reasons...including, what if the patient really didn't want the abortion but for whatever reason ended up having one - what kind of psychological torture must that be to be on the L&D floor surrounded by new moms and babies???
I guess I'm just struggling with this, as a student who's trying to figure it out...I feel the calling but it doesn't include helping with abortions...
Yes I believe a "prolife" (anti abortion) nurse can work sucessfully in OB, just as I believe that I, as a pro-choice nurse who has participated in every phase of care of a woman undergoing an abortion can also have a place in "helping bring babies into the world". In both cases the important issue is supporting the patient's choice as an independent adult to make her own decisions and not to pass judgement or inflict our own moral values on her. I feel that birth, termination, care of gyn pts. are all aspects of the care in my chosen area.
I feel it is equally important that we support each other as nurses in the right to form our own moral values and do not attempt to "convert" one another to our way of thinking. or to make someone feel less than moral because our ethical decisions are not identical. For example, I have gone in on my days off to "special" an abortion patient when the nurses on duty did not feel comfortable with this. I consider this to be supportive of both the patient and my co-workers.
You should not be required to participate in these procedures, but only you can decide whether you will feel comfortable working in a facility where abortions are performed.
karenAR the problem is that most instructors tend to be liberal, even at the private baptist program i went to. I remember one instructor in particular (my peds instructor and community health) that felt the need to indoctrinate all students to her thinking. me and her clashed heads more than once Iused to pick prolife topics to write on just to get under her skin. i eventually had to report her to the dean to stop her obsesive behavior.
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