Her Choice Advocacy Research
Her Choice Advocacy utilizes the data, information, and research collected to educate the public, spread awareness, train professionals, and advocate for issues identified by survivors. Facilitating forums, conferences, media interviews, social media platforms, and any other opportunity available for sharing research information with the public will be considered. Her Choice Advocacy aims to contribute to evidence-based practice regarding the sub-population of women who endure rape-related pregnancies.
Women who have conceived a child through sexual assault or rape lack support, social inclusion, resources, and are denied the fundamental right of self-determination to plan without influence.
The population affected by this issue is the surviving women who conceived a child through sexual assault or the parent of a child that was conceived from sexual assault. Lastly, multi-disciplinary professionals that provide services, intervention, or treatments to women who endured sexual assault-related pregnancies. Individuals may have been subjects of incest, intimate partner violence, or victims of sexual violence.
Current Program Offerings
Currently, there are few programs that offer direct services for a woman that experienced sexual assault-related pregnancies. Programs that are offered are based solely on culture rape. Sexual assault-related pregnancies are a subpopulation of rape due to “Rape Culture” unconsciously excluded this population of women. Programs offer therapy opportunities for victims, yet they do not have services or resources for a mother that does not want to terminate their pregnancy.
Concerns for Clients
The women who conceive a child through sexual assault and the child is at risk to be re-victimized by repeating their stories and interacting with multi-disciplinary professionals. Additionally, clients may be wary about coming forth in participation due to risking public identification, biased opinions, re-victimization, or contact from their perpetrator.
Barriers Survivors Endured
Survivors report feelings of isolation due to having to "keep quiet" about the trauma and choices.
Individuals leaving the life of human trafficking, seek assistance public assistance to restart, become independent, and become stable. Our survivors have been denied benefits due to not being able to comply with the Friend of The Court and Child Support requirements. Due to the victimization of human trafficking these young ladies are unable to identify the biological father.
Survivors with religious beliefs report enduring discrimination, bias, insensitive practices, and judgemental comments when they choose to decline the emergency contraceptive. Often, survivors with religious ties have to reportedly explain why religion leads them to choose to keep the child from the sexual assault.
Some states still allow the perpetrator to obtained rights/custody of a child that was conceived as a result of sexual assault.
Survivors report enduring harsh judgment when they make the choice to abort.
Survivors report enduring re-victimization and trauma throughout their prenatal care, as medical staff are judgmental, lack understanding, and are astonished a woman would choose to carry a child from sexual assault conception.
Individual survivors who have direct contact with Child Protective Services have endured the lack of understanding of the need for the development of parenting skills and family reunification. They are met with an aggressive system that does not have resources or services in place for survivors of human trafficking, incest, or sexual assault.
Women and young girls who have endured a pregnancy, miscarriage, adoption, or abortion have been left out of the "Rap Culture," and "Support Survivors," movement. These and the children have been forgottten.
Dr. Aparna Jain
Meet The Team