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In Vietnam, mother performs abortion for her young daughter

Thursday, January 29, 2015, 19:34 GMT+7
In Vietnam, mother performs abortion for her young daughter
Mothers set up online tombs for their aborted children.

A father tied his beloved young daughter to a tree in the garden to beat her until midnight in Vietnam.

>> An audio version of the story is available here

Her mother wanted to rescue the daughter from the abuse but was helpless.

The father was angry at realizing that his 13-year daughter had become pregnant with a male classmate.

The mother, who is an obstetrician, finally decided to force her daughter into abortion and sent her to a boarding school 100km away from home to avoid slander from curious neighbors.

This real story of a family in Vietnam happened in a rural area just 100km from Ho Chi Minh City. In a nation that is deeply affected by Confucianism, an illegitimate pregnancy of a single daughter is considered a shame for her parents and family.

With sexual topics considered a taboo in the conservative community, an adolescent girl and boy often have little knowledge about sex and contraception, thus leading to this problem.

Though unable to deny the natural sexual desires of an adolescent girl, parents are inclined to avoid talking with their children about it.

An abortion case

As an obstetrician, Phuong, 42, owned a pharmacy and has many customers.

She has a decent and noble beauty. She is the mother of Na, who became pregnant when she was an eighth grader at age 13.

Phuong told her life story to Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper, admitting she has not had a good night of sleep in three years.

She said she often dreams of a little child crying and calling, “Grand mom, grand mom, I am dead.”

To conceal her daughter’s pregnancy, Phuong forced Na into her consulting room and directly gave her an injection to take out the fetus when it was nearly four months old.

Minutes after the injection, the fetus came out. It was pale and damaged, she recalled. The fetus was special because it had a blood connection with her.

“I couldn’t understand why I saw it had a similar look and appearance to my daughter Na at birth,” Phuong said. “I was dazzled and felt darkened. I felt choked as if someone was strangling me.

“I fell down unconsciously.”

She is not sure if her dreams and the loss of sleep are the result of an obsession or a spiritual issue. But it was the last abortion she carried out.

She said she did not want the pregnancy of her daughter to mar the prestige of her family and blight her marriage later.

After the incident, Phuong said she stopped working as an obstetrician and stayed at home to sell medicines so she could have time to reflect on how she was raising her daughter.

“I guess she felt lonely in her family that time. Her parents couldn’t understand her,” Phuong admitted.

A 14-year old father

Na fell in love with a classmate who is one year older than her. Intelligent and with a manly look, the young boy is Huy, who lives just 2-3 kilometers from Na.

Years after the incident, Huy admitted that he and Na skipped school many times before one day, she came and told him she was sad about her family and wanted to leave her home.

They went to Vung Tau City just outside Ho Chi Minh City and many other places for weeks and only returned home when they were running out of money.

“I really panicked on hearing that Na was pregnant,” Huy recounted, adding that he was devoting all his time to playing computer games to forget it.

Later, Huy and Na argued and even exchanged blows with each other. But after the anger left, they loved each other as if nothing had happened.

Huy said he only saw Na crying once when she was ‘jailed’ in a boarding school, 100km from home.

“The first time I saw her cry was when we bid farewell.

“I consoled her, and listened to her but didn’t say a single word.

“I felt relaxed as if a burden had been relieved when I heard that Na was forced by her mother into an abortion,” Huy said.

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