A judge in the Argentine province of Mendoza has ruled against a mother’s request to force her twelve-year-old daughter to undergo an abortion.The decision was based on the fact that, under Argentine law, abortions are depenalized only in cases of pregnancies of mentally retarded women, or endangerment of the life of the mother.
However, the judge added, his decision was also influenced by “the sustained desire of the minor not to damage the fetus, and insofar as is possible, the challenge of being a mother.”
Justice Germán Ferrer also rejected claims by the mothers’ attorneys that the child would suffer psychological damage without an abortion, and concluded exactly the opposite. Based on expert testimony, he stated that, had the girl received an abortion, she “would have suffered an irreversible psychological disturbance.”
Although she had conceived the child as the result of being raped by her stepfather, the girl insisted that she wished to have the baby.
“After analyzing the whole situation, above all the psychological and social aspects of the child, they came to the conclusion that today the interruption of the pregnancy could produce a personality disturbance in the child that could result in irreversible psychiatric pathologies such as psychosis,” said Ferrer.
“Despite the fact that pregnancy and motherhood is not the ideal in a child of this age, today it is the lesser of evils because this time of gestation will allow the child to have the support that is necessary from the government through its professionals to assume this new challenge of being a mother.”
He ordered the girl’s release from the hospital where she has been confined for three weeks for her protection, and gave custody to her maternal grandmother.
“A series of protective measures has been ordered and planned in order to guarantee the rights of this girl as a pregnant mother, as well as the newborn,” said Ferrer.
The girl, who is from a poor background, will also receive financial aid to guarantee a standard of living for herself and her child.
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