The news regarding Texas’ abortion laws is evolving daily. If you are pregnant and have any questions about the latest abortion law information, please do not hesitate to call Adoptions With Love. We can help you learn about all your unplanned pregnancy options in Texas.
Texas became the focus of Roe v. Wade in 2021, when Governor Greg Abbott signed a new, contentious law. The controversial law – which placed a tight restriction on abortions – made national headlines and sparked many protests. It eventually was heard by the U.S. Supreme Court. For several weeks, the law was in a period of flux. These changes have left many women in Texas, including expectant mothers, unsure of their rights.
On September 1, 2021, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott signed a bill into place – Senate Bill 8 – banning abortions after six weeks of pregnancy. As of this writing, the State of Texas bans all abortions after cardiac activity can be detected in the embryo, which is usually around the six-week gestation period, but often before a woman knows she is pregnant. The changes continue to make headlines as lawmakers debate whether it is constitutional and are leaving medical providers uncertain about performing termination procedures in Texas.
If you are facing an unplanned pregnancy in Texas, you may have many questions surrounding the current Texas abortion laws. You may be wondering what you will do and how these discussed changes could affect your future. The first thing to know is that you still have options. Read on, as we break down what the changes to the abortion laws could entail and the many options available for expectant/birth mothers in Texas.
The New Texas Abortion Laws and What They Mean
Texas has the most restrictive abortion laws in the country. According to the new law, the termination of an embryo, otherwise known as an abortion, in Texas is prohibited past the seven-week mark. This is a slight change to the original “six-week ban” passed in September, but it is still right around the time a baby’s cardiac activity is detectable. .
Many women do not know they are expecting within this time frame.
The only exception to this rule is for those facing a possible fatal medical emergency. There are no exceptions for cases of pregnancy that involve a disease or defect that will translate into stillbirths or death of the child shortly after birth – which are often detected long after the seven-week mark. There are also no exceptions for pregnant women who have conceived due to rape or incest.
On December 1, Texas passed a law that adds penalties of jail time and a find up to $10,000 for anyone who prescribes pills for medication abortions via telehealth or mail.
These aspects of the law are not the only parts being contested. According to Senate Bill 8, Texas residents have the right to sue abortion providers and anyone else who helped a woman obtain an abortion. This includes those who give a woman a ride to a clinic or who provide financial assistance to obtain an abortion. These lawsuits are not aimed directly against those who receive an abortion, but rather, anyone who helps facilitate the process. A Texas judge recently deemed this part of the bill as unconstitutional, but the situation remains fluid and could change at any point.
On December 10, the Supreme Court ruled that these new laws were allowed to proceed in Texas, though they will continue to be feuded in lower federal court. A similar abortion case in Mississippi is also scheduled for consideration by the Supreme Court in the summer of 2022.
All of this has left much uncertainty among patients and providers, leaving them wondering what their options are.
If you are facing an unexpected pregnancy in Texas, it is important to know that you still have options.
Is Abortion an Option in Texas?
There are still three, basic choices for women facing an unplanned pregnancy in Texas: abortion, adoption, or parenthood.
Texas residents have a constitutionally protected right to decide whether and when to become a parent, and that includes the right to termination. As of now, abortion in the first seven weeks of pregnancy is legal in Texas, but this could change at any time.
As of this writing, an expectant mother may still choose to get an abortion in another state after the seven weeks. Medical providers or individuals that assist in abortion care out of state would not be considered aiding and abetting in violation of the law.
Adoption is an Option in Texas
Another option for women facing an unplanned pregnancy in Texas is adoption. Adoption offers benefits for everyone in the adoption triad, including expectant/birth parents, adoptees, and adoptive families.
Adoption is a loving choice for those who are not yet ready to parent. This choice has many benefits for expectant/birth mothers. It can bring expectant/birth mothers peace of mind, as provides their child with a safe, stable, and loving home. It also gives birth mothers the chance to work on their personal and professional goals, all while knowing their child is living a secure life, filled with opportunity, with a loving adoptive family.
Thanks to open adoption, many expectant/birth mothers know that their choice to lovingly place their child with adoption does not mean “goodbye forever.” In fact, it is just the beginning. With an open adoption plan, you can arrange to meet with your child’s adoptive family from time-to-time or receive phone calls or emails with updates. Open adoption is an option in Texas.
Misconceptions Surrounding Adoption
Adoption has come a long way over the past decades. . Gone are the days of adoption being a secretive and taboo subject. Most children today who were adopted are not in the dark about their adoption story. In fact, most adoptions today are open or semi-open. An estimated 90 percent of children in an open adoption report having positive feelings about their situation. Their parents are encouraged by adoption professionals to speak about adoption, share age-appropriate information, and celebrate their child’s unique story of being loved by two families instead of one.
The terms “put up for adoption” or “give up for adoption” are dated and no longer used in the adoption community today. In fact, we know that adoption is anything but “giving up.” Adoption is the brave, loving, and selfless decision to put your child’s needs before your own. It means giving your child a life full of love and opportunity, even if you cannot be a parent at this time.
Another common misconception surrounding adoption is the notion that open adoption means co-parenting your child. Having an open adoption means there is ongoing communication between birth and adoptive parents, but it does not mean that a birth parent has any parental rights to the child.
Pregnant in Texas? Find the Support You Deserve
At Adoptions With Love, we understand that facing an unexpected pregnancy is a difficult situation. The Texas abortion laws are confusing to many people right now, and we know that it can be challenging to understand your rights as an expectant/birth mother.
It is important to know that you deserve support, no matter where you are in your pregnancy. Whether you are considering adoption or abortion, there is help available to you.
Adoptions With Love supports expectant/birth mothers in all of their decisions, at all stages of pregnancy. We believe you deserve to have choices in your life. We are here to provide non-biased support and education throughout your unplanned pregnancy. We can help you create an adoption plan in Texas. We can discuss your options as an expectant mother in Texas, and connect you with the resources and support you need to make the best possible decision for you and your child. We are here for you.
If you would like to learn more about adoption or your choices in this journey, do not hesitate to contact Adoptions With Love. We can discuss your options and will listen to you, free from judgment, criticism, and always free of charge, too.
Call us any time at 800-722-7731, text us confidentially at 617-777-0072, or contact us online. We can help you navigate the adoption journey every step of the way.