13-year-old girl recently gave birth after she was raped
A 13-year-old schoolgirl raped by a stranger was forced to give birth due to Mississippi’s abortion ban, according to a harrowing new report. The Clarksdale teenager, identified by the pseudonym Ashley, gave birth to a baby boy she nicknamed “Peanut” earlier this summer, her family told TIME.
Ashley was just 12 last fall when she says a stranger snatched her from her yard and raped her on the side of the house, her mother, Regina, told the magazine. The then-sixth grader didn’t tell anyone about the attack and she didn’t find out she was pregnant until January, when she was taken to an emergency room with profuse vomiting.
She was so innocent that she didn’t even know how babies were made, according to her mother. The family found it impossible to get her to have an abortion due to bans in place in Mississippi and most surrounding states following last year’s Supreme Court ruling that struck down the constitutional right to abortion.
Mississippi rape victim, 13-year-old girl recently gave birth
Although Mississippi’s ban has an exception for rape, there are no providers left in the Magnolia state, which is already largely classified as a maternity care desert, according to the March of Dimes. Ashley’s mother said she didn’t even know Mississippi had a rape exception.
The closest provider was in Chicago, a nine-hour drive away. Her mother said it was impossible for her to take time off from work and pay for gas, food and lodging as well as the cost of the abortion. “I don’t have the funds for all this,” Regina told TIME. “I wish [Ashley] would have told me when it happened. We could have gotten Plan B or something like that,” she continued.
“That would have been that.” Ashley’s family kept her pregnancy a secret. She finished sixth grade online and will probably start seventh grade the same way, they said. Even the girl’s three school friends don’t know about her baby, she told the outlet. “We’ve kept it quiet, because people misjudge when they don’t know what’s going on,” Regina said.
“It’s going to be a little private matter here.” When she was asked how she felt when she found out she was pregnant, Ashley said it was not “happy” news. “This situation hurts more because he was an innocent kid doing what kids do, playing outside, and he was my son,” her mother told TIME just two days after Peanut was born.
“It still hurts, and it will always hurt.” Attempts to hold Ashley’s attacker accountable have also stalled, even after a family member thought she had identified the alleged rapist on social media, the outlet noted. There have been no arrests, and police did not collect a DNA sample from Peanut for possible identification until pressed by TIME, the outlet said.Read More………