A Canadian Woman Chose To Get Rid Of One Twin While Pregnant. Could You Do That?

Wed, December 15, 2010 10:00am EST by 52 Comments

An Ontario-based couple, both in their 40s, decided to “reduce” their pregnancy from twins to a single fetus through a procedure that is becoming more common.

A Canadian couple were thrilled to have been able to start a family in their 40s. They had just celebrated the first birthday of their son, earlier this year, when they discovered they were expecting again. Seven weeks later, their surprise turned to worry when an ultrasound showed the wife was carrying twins.

“It came as a complete shock,” the mother (who did not want to reveal her name) told the National Post. “We’re both career people. If we were going to have three children two years apart, someone else was going to be raising our kids… All of a sudden our lives as we know them, and as we liked to lead them, are not going to happen.”

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That’s why she and her husband made the difficult decision to “reduce” the number of babies she was carrying. At first their own doctor tried to tell them that the procedure was illegal and then attempted to convince the woman that she could afford to become a stay-at-home mom. Eventually they found a Canadian clinic that would do the procedure, and it was funded by Medicare.

Selective reductions are becoming more common as the number of multiple pregnancies increases, thanks in part to the success and popularity of fertility treatments like IVF. According to the mother, her Toronto doctor performs this procedure several times a month. New York-based obstetrician Dr. Mark Evans confirms that twins make up about 5 percent to 7 percent of the total reductions, which are typically performed between the ninth and 12th week of pregnancy.

How does it work? Doctors use ultrasound to guide a needle through the woman’s abdomen, into the uterus. They then inject a potassium chloride solution into the fetus or fetuses, which stops their hearts.

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“I am absolutely sure I did the right thing,” says the mother. “I had read some online forums, people were speaking of grieving, feeling a sense of loss. I didn’t feel any of that. Not that I’m a cruel, bitter person… I just didn’t feel I would be able to care for [twins] in a way that I wanted to.”

It seems that the economy is also increasing the demand for selective reductions, which raises some ethical questions. Should parents have the right to selectively abort some of their babies because of the impact that child may have on their current lives? “I do believe people should have the choice, given the cost of raising children today,” says the unnamed mother. “You want to be able to provide for your children… to give them the things they need to become the best adults they can become.”

Where do you stand on the issue, HollyMoms?

–Amy L. Harper

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Posted at 4:16 PM on November 22, 2012  

i find this so shocking! as a twin myself, its scary thinking that my mum could have got rid of me that easily. just awful.

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T. Horn

Posted at 3:10 PM on October 25, 2012  

makes you wonder if the other baby will be carried to term. Divine Justice??? if other baby is born if the authorities are right about how twins can sense each other than she just doomer her other child to a life without the closest family member he EVER would have had

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Posted at 10:12 AM on February 10, 2012  

“” Having to give the child up for adoption is also messy and painful.””

There are some people who cant ever have children and that child would have been the light of there life…..

“”Abortion should be if its absolutely necessary”” Absolutely correct

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Posted at 4:59 PM on August 31, 2011  

This makes me sick. I have twins myself and yes it was a shock and not what we had planned, but I sure as heck would not give up either one of them for the world. For her to say she has no remorse over it is even sadder, what kind of person can create life and then pick and choose which to keep w/out feeling bad about it. I hope when that baby is born, that every time she looks into it’s eyes she feels guilty. Like others have said having a baby is a privilege not a right.

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Posted at 6:41 AM on September 1, 2011  

It isn’t this couple’s fault they were given twins, and if they admit to not being able to handle it, why is that so wrong? Having to give the child up for adoption is also messy and painful. Stop with the high and mighty attitude that having a baby is a privilege, they wanted A baby and if that is legal, then leave the morality up to the parents. There are plenty of homes full of unloved and ignored children and if that can be prevented then who are you to criticize? Get with the times and accept that not everyone has your standpoint.

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Posted at 9:31 PM on September 1, 2011  

It’s not the baby’s fault that “they were given twins” either. Neither is it the baby’s fault that his/her existence was going to make the parent’s have to rethink their priorities and adjust their lives. This was murder, pure and simple. Any abortion is murder. And this story is particulary shocking because they chose to murder one child and keep the other. What an evil thing to set the living child up to deal with survival guit their entire life. This entire thing is disgusting and so very sad.

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Posted at 10:15 AM on August 31, 2011  

why are they questioning these people killing one of their children to suit their tastes? weve been allowing women to shoot potassium chloride into their childs beating hearts (which means they were alive at one time) and kill them for years….why is this any different???? if something is wrong its wrong period….if youre going to support legal murder then it should be ok for everyone to do it…sometimes i hate the freedoms we have.

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Posted at 9:07 AM on August 31, 2011  

I had a stillborn baby yrs ago at 38 weeks gestation, this haunts me every day of my life. Having a baby is a privelege, these people don’t deserve any children. They were blessed with twins and decided to murder one and they think this is ok? WTH? I’m sick thinking about this.

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Posted at 10:09 AM on August 31, 2011  

I agree, I’m haunted just by this article. They should have considered adoption, but people can be very selfish and think killing their child over giving it up to a loving family is a better option.

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jae hawkins

Posted at 1:09 AM on August 31, 2011  

That is an excuse when she says the cost of raising a kid is high and she couldn’t take care of kids like she wants. Use birth control, gets your tubes tied. Abortion should be if its absolutely necessary

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Posted at 10:58 AM on August 31, 2011  

I am a twin. This story makes me cry… Having my twin sister is the best thing in my life. She would have stopped her career for one year may be, then go back to work. In Canada they get good benefit for children, it is not question of money, just being so selfish! She could have given the other child for adoption, but I am sure that would have been very traumatizing for siblings to learn that they had been separated at birth .
Twins in the womb touch each other and play with each other, tickle, pull the cordon… Each one is the first person the other meets… I am sure that the remaining baby could feel that there is a dead body floating beside him … One day, when his grandson will have twins, they will wonder ” does this run in our family” ? He will say ” not that I am aware of…” voila.

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Posted at 12:50 AM on August 31, 2011  

Oh this makes me soooo very sick. I just recently had a miscarriage at 17 weeks and I would have done anything to save that baby. We even buried it because at that stage it was a baby. I am already the mother of two children and was so happy for a third and if it would have been twins I would have felt even MORE blessed not cursed. This just makes her a monster like all the women out there who abort thier babies. If you don’t want your baby there are people out there who do if you don’t want to be pregnant DON’T HAVE SEX!!

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Posted at 11:18 PM on August 30, 2011  

this “person” does not deserve any children as she seems to have a huge me issue… do the world a favor lady and give up your kids for adoption. the worls has to many kids that grow up to be sick adults with narsasistic parents like you.

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Sophie Grace

Posted at 11:10 PM on August 30, 2011  

I wish that I was lucky enough to make that choice, but I am one of the “UNLUCKY” ones, that I could not have a baby or even twins… I can see if you had 8 in there, then a choice would most likely need to be made, but twins??? How selfish of you. You robbed the other baby of growing up with its twin….and they say that twins have a “VERY” close relatioship, with the other twin…Lady, I would have taken your twins in a heart beat. That’s all I ever wanted in life, is to be a mother and I was robbed of that. Do you know what I would do to hear those words “MOMMY”??? and it’s something I’ll never hear… I hope you can live with yourself. Good luck and “GOD” help you….

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Posted at 11:44 PM on August 30, 2011  

Absolutely right!!!! I am 25, and cannot have children,this saddens me so much. All the women who have no choice, who can’t create life, why should others be able to take it away at there convenience.

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Posted at 10:59 PM on August 30, 2011  

I think she is a woman that obviously is messed up how could you think “oh I could never take care of your sister/brother so we aborted him”. How is that child going to feel that his/her twin is dead because his/her parents didn’t want them. I feel sorry for the kid that they already have. You are a sorry excuse for a woman.

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