So, I thought that this week I would talk about the patients and those who accompany them to the abortion clinic.
First we have the mothers. They come from every race, age, and socio-economic background. They come with their mothers, fathers, sisters, best friends, husband, and boyfriends. But still, they most of them walk into the clinic the same way; heads down, arms around their stomachs. Most don't look at us, but they never yell at us. They just do their best to pretend we don't exist.
However, there are some variations. The women who are there for counseling, but not for an abortion yet, will occasionally come and talk to us, to see what help we really are offering.
There are also women who cry the entire time they walk to the clinic and who sob their entire walk to the car. These women are inconsolable and are usually escorted by a friend or one of the nurses. (We had one of these last saturday; the nurse walked her back to her car because she was sobbing so hard that she couldn't stand up strtaight. Her boyfriend seemed at a loss of what to do with her.)
Next there are the fathers. They're the most likely to come talk to us. They come in four main groups. Group A drives her to the clinic, gets back in his car, and does something else for an hour or two, comes back and waits for her to walk back to the car. They seem not to respect their girlfriends much.
Guys in Group B are genuinely supportive of their girlfriends. They walk inside with her and will sit in the waiting room until they're certain she's alright and then they'll walk her back to the car. Group B guys will sometimes well out negative comments to us while they walk to the clinic.
Group C guys are simillarly supportive, but disagree with abortion. They're the ones who will talk to us and bring pamphlets back to their girlfriends. They're typically very sad.
Group D guys are jerks. These are the guys who sit on the stairs in front of the clinic and laugh. They hang out together and make abortion jokes. They're more common than you'd think.
We also have the Bestfriend. She's always very supportive, tends to wait in the waiting room. She's also the most likely to cuss us out. Our theory is that the Bestfriends who are especially angry have had abortions themselves. If the best friend is really just a friend, she'll sometimes come over and speak to us. This is extremely rare, though.
Then there are The Parents. This is an especially weird grouping. Always consists of at least a middle-aged woman and her teen-aged daughter (usually 16/17). Sometimes her father will be there. They tend to completly ignore us, though the father occasionally will come over for information. If the Aunt is bringing the girl instead of The Parents, she'll come over too. (A lot of aunts come talk to us, for some reason.)