As I continued striving to create my website on abortion, my mentor made me a proposition to interview his wife, a social worker who helps women make informed decisions as to what to do with their pregnancy. I agreed to the interview, and here it is, summarized to an extent.
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When we began our interview, I opened asking her very basic questions, such as the approach she takes toward her clients, whether this approach is friendly, comforting, or neutral, and if this approach is done when first introducing herself to the patient or after they had already been introduced. I also asked her as to the method she uses to present information to her clients: does she present the consequences of aborting outright, or does she present them when the opportunity arises in her conversation with the client?
She replied calmly, saying that, when beginning the conversation with her client, she does not take on a forceful attitude and patiently waits for the client to become ready and comfortable with the situation.
Afterwards, she asks the client what her thoughts are on her current situation, and she generally tries to make the client feel comfortable, so that, when it comes time to make the ‘big decision,’ the client will not feel as uneasy as she may have previously felt. She also explained that she is impartial on the subject of abortion. She tries to help them make the decision that is best for them, not the decision she believes in (if she is partial on the subject).
She also said that, when explaining the consequences and issues of abortion, she presents all the information as is, and gives out pamphlets of information if the need arises with the client. She basically attempts to comfort the client throughout the entire procedure. If her client feels ill at ease or nervous, she tries to make them feel comfortable.
I then questioned her as to the hardships she may have gone through during a meeting with a client. “Do you, personally, find your job to be a difficult thing to do?” I also questioned her further on whether or not she is completely impartial on the subject. I questioned as to whether or not she regrets anything she had said in a meeting, or if she had ever felt that she could have done more to help the client afterward.
Again, very calmly, she replied, saying that she did not find the counseling to be difficult. When her client had made her decision as to aborting the child or not, the decision was the client’s responsibility alone. If the client’s mind is made up, then she cannot change it. She did, however, tell me that it was difficult for her emotionally and mentally at times, especially when she knew the background of the client she was counseling, such as their current life situation or the reason they had become pregnant.
However, when everything is said and done at the end of the meeting, she said that she has no regrets as to what she had said to her client. She presents them with them with all the information possible on abortion and helps them make a decision as to what they are going to do. As has already been said, it the woman’s responsibility alone as to what her decision is.
I then asked her whether or not she keeps in touch with her clients on a personal basis, or whether or not she knew any of her patients prior to meeting them in counseling.
She told me that she could not keep in contact with her clients, as it was difficult to do so in the hospital setting she was in. However, as stated in her previous answer, she had known some of her clients prior to counseling them, and sometimes this would lead her to emotional and mental strain after the client had made their decision.
I ended my questioning, asking her if she ever felt that she had made a difference in the lives of her clients after their meeting had finished.
She told me that she generally felt that she lets her client know everything there is to know about abortion and the consequences of having one. She does feel that she had made a difference, as she helps them come to a final decision, as well as aiding the client emotionally. She also commented that the comforting approach she takes on at the opening of the meeting helps the client come to a decision feeling more at ease. At the end of the meeting, she said that she feels she has helped her client make the right choice, and so she does feel she has helped them (to summarize her answer).
And so concludes my interview with a social worker and her methods of dealing with abortion.