A British policewoman and born-again Christian says it was a sudden and unexpected "rush of love" that in her mind transformed her unborn child, conceived in a date-rape, from "an alien" to a beloved daughter on the day of her scheduled abortion. Miriam Virgo credits God with stepping in to save her daughter’s life.
Now 27, Virgo told her story in an autobiographical piece in Britain’s Daily Mail yesterday, saying that, having come from a devout Christian family, she had never expected to find herself a single mother at 19. In 2001, she had attended a party with co-workers at which she believes her single glass of wine was spiked with a date-rape drug. After the attack and with no memory of that night, Virgo was shocked to find herself pregnant and considered obtaining an abortion.
"Coming from such a Christian family," she said, "I’ve never believed in abortion, but suddenly finding myself pregnant with a rapist’s baby, I looked at it differently." She continued, "I just couldn’t face the thought of the baby being born and looking like Rob [her alleged rapist] – it would be a constant reminder of what had happened."
After "counselling," Virgo said, she was ready for an abortion; but when the moment came, and she was already dressed in the hospital gown, she changed her mind after what she describes as a moment of help from God.
Ultimately, after she gave birth to Kayleigh, now seven, she found that the child did look like her attacker, and she experienced some difficulty bonding. But ultimately she overcame this, saying, "After all, none of this was her fault." A year after her daughter’s birth, Virgo applied to and was accepted by the police force.
She said that when Kayleigh is old enough, she will tell her of the circumstances of her conception, and "I’ll also tell her about the moment I decided to keep her, and how I felt all this love for her, love that is even stronger now."
In another interview, Virgo said, "God knew what my life would be without the girl and he knew what it would be with the girl. I prayed to God and asked for his will to be done in my life."
The so-called "rape exception" is commonly accepted, even by many who are inclined to the pro-life position, as a "compassionate" act for a rape victim. But pro-life apologists refute this, saying that it is neither just for the innocent child who is killed, nor beneficial for the mother.
Stephanie Gray, the head and founder of the Canadian Centre for Bioethical Reform, told LifeSiteNews.com that Miriam Virgo’s story should be one that inspires others to make the same choice in favor of life.
It illustrates, she said, the basic principle of the entire pro-life cause, that an unborn child has dignity and value, no matter what the circumstances of her conception. "If the unborn are valuable because they’re human," Gray said, "then how they come into existence does not change the fact that they are persons with inherent dignity."
Gray illustrated the principle with a hypothetical: had Virgo been married and "had consensual sex with her husband the night prior to her date rape, upon discovering her pregnancy she would not have known the identity of the child’s father."
"Imagine if she hoped it was her husband’s child and carried on with the pregnancy, and only after birth, with paternity test results, discovered the child’s father was a rapist. Would she be permitted to kill the infant then because of the father’s crime? Obviously not. Likewise, we may not kill an unborn child because of her father’s crime."
Gray said that Virgo’s "witness is a powerful example to all people, and that is that we should be other-focused, not self-focused."
"Even amidst her own victimization and deep pain, Miriam chose not to victimize an innocent child."
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Read related LifeSiteNews.com coverage:
Rape Victim: My Child "No Different Than a Child Not Conceived in Rape"
Rape and Incest Victims Don’t Want Abortion, Say It Doesn’t Help Women
"Why I Love the Baby of the Man Who Raped Me"