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Teen's DIY abortion lands mom in prison

Michelle Maffei is a freelance copywriter covering a variety of topics both online and in print, from parenting to beauty and more. Combining her two favorite loves, writing and motherhood, she has found joy in even the most challenging ...

It's never a good plan to give your teen an at-home abortion using pills from the internet

A Pennsylvania woman is going to prison over her teen's at-home abortion. Money's tight, I get that. But that doesn't warrant giving your teen daughter foreign pills to induce an abortion at home.

Single mom Jennifer Ann Whalen, 39, of Washingtonville, Pennsylvania, faced a tough decision when her 16-year-old daughter came to her with the news that she was pregnant — and didn't want to keep the baby. However, the nearest abortion clinic was 74 miles away, which is apparently too far to drive for this life-changing procedure. So Whalen decided to do her daughter a solid and ordered pills online from Europe to induce an abortion at home. And surprise, surprise — the uninsured teen ended up in the hospital anyway.

Well, it turns out that Pennsylvania has this little law — abortions have to be performed by a physician. And now the mother, who works as a nursing home aide, is headed for the slammer to serve 12 to 18 months in prison, fined $1,000 and has to perform 40 hours of community service after she serves her time.

After hearing the sentence — which by the way I think is a little light — I got curious and looked up the cost of an abortion. According to Planned Parenthood, it costs about $300 to $950 to terminate a pregnancy in the first trimester. Is this mother crazy? When you choose to support your daughter's choice for a teen abortion, now's not the time to get cheap — you find the money. Skip on the manicure. Bring your lunch to work. Look into adoption options. See if the clinic has a payment program. But, for goodness sakes, Dr. Moms, quit feeding your kids pills from abroad as a medical fix.

Now, don't get me wrong — this is not a pro-life vs pro-choice debate. It's about your job as a mother to keep your children safe. You don't feed your daughter tapeworms to help her lose weight for a beauty pageant. You don't give your daughter cancer drugs to get attention. And you don't give your daughter pills from abroad to induce a teen at-home abortion or you're going to prison. And maybe to Hades, too.

Click here to read a different point of view on this very controversial case.

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