• Wed, Oct 24 2012

Dear Richard Mourdock, God Did Not Intend For My Rape To Happen

hand of godOn Tuesday evening, the Senate candidates for my state of Indiana met for a debate. Republican Richard Mourdock, who beat out the respected Senator Richard Lugar in a fierce primary battle, squared off against Democrat Joe Donnelly. In the course of that debate, Mourdock was asked about his views on abortion and if there is ever a reason to terminate a pregnancy. And like a long string of Republicans before him during this election season, Mourdock expressed views that were thoughtless, ignorant, and just plain offensive. When referring to abortion in cases of rape, Mourdock said, ”I think even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it something that God intended to happen.”

A few days ago, I wrote a letter to Joe Walsh about his ridiculous statement that abortion to save the life of the mother is never medically necessary. I spoke about my heart-wrenching experience losing a very wanted pregnancy because it threatened my life and was not viable. But Walsh didn’t really have to listen to my letter. I don’t live in his district. I don’t even live in his state.

Richard Mourdock is another matter. If that man wins this Senate race, he will represent me and my family. And while I am extremely hesitant to open up about a very sensitive time in my past, on a website visited by my friends and family, I feel like Richard Mourdock should understand just how wrong his statement was. I feel like this politician should have to answer to one of his possible constituents about such a disgusting comment. So once again, I’ll share an open letter to a Republican politician who doesn’t seem to understand a whole lot about rape, abortion, or women in general.

Dear Mr. Mourdock,

I could open this letter by pretending that I was considering voting for you in two weeks. That would be a lie. While I would’ve considered crossing the party line for a statesman like Richard Lugar, you do not have his thoughtfulness, his honesty, or his dedication to serving his constituency instead of just your personal agenda. However, whether you were ever going to earn my vote or not, you are still hoping represent the entire state of Indiana. You aren’t just running to serve the Republicans or the conservatives. You want to represent all of us.

By all of us, that includes thousands of sexual assault survivors. I am one of them.

I am a woman whose choice was taken from her in the most brutal and soul-crushing way. And I do not know what God you believe in, but I refuse to accept that this horror was something God “intended to happen.” No matter what the outcome of my rape was, whether I got pregnant or not, I would say that there was a clear absence of faith or humanity in what I went through. Stating that it worked out the way God intended implies that he had a hand in the very worst moment of my life.

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  • Staying Anonymous

    Fellow survivor here and I’m having trouble finding words, but I didn’t want to leave the article without telling you that you’re brave and I appreciate you sharing even though society typically gives us negative incentive for doing so. I hope you get nothing but support; I remember your support when I shared in the comments months ago.

  • DadCAMP

    Let’s just stop with the “god” thing and all will be fine. THERE. IS. NO. GOD.

    Shit happens. Sometimes it’s good, sometimes it’s bad. Sometimes it’s our fault, sometime it’s not. There is no flying unicorn deciding if the Beyonce should win a Grammy over Rihanna as much as their is no bearded dude deciding who should be raped and end up pregnant.

    Shit just happens.

    • http://www.xojane.com/author/eve Eve Vawter

      …. there is no flying unicorn? :(

    • meteor_echo

      But there’s the Flying Spaghetti Monster! :D

  • LoveyDovey

    Having had to deal with a pregnancy from rape, this makes me livid. I decided to terminate and I’m glad I had that option. No regrets. Bring it, haters.

    Shit like this is making me rethink my original stance of abstaining from voting. I’m not from Indiana, but I do know for a fact that if Romney wins it’s back to being a second-class citizen. I don’t want that for myself or my daughters.

    • Justme

      I sit with women at work and listen to them wax poetic about Romney and everything that he’ll do for the economy and I want to shake them and say “what about what he WON’T do for your daughters!”

    • EAMN

      You’re a freaking idiot.

  • Megan’s Near LIfe Experience

    View: First to Last
    An open letter to Richard Mourdock, from an Indiana rape victim, with hope of providing healing, understanding and hope.
    http://megansnearlifeexperience.tumblr.com/post/34229833942/an-open-letter-to-indiana-senate-candidate-richard

  • http://www.xojane.com/author/eve Eve Vawter

    Much respect and love Linds.

  • Amanda Low

    Wow. Thank you for speaking out about this; hopefully others from your state will read and vote against this a-hole.

  • One Funny Motha

    Thank you for your bravery in speaking out on what I’m sure is a very difficult subject for you. I applaud your efforts to discussing a matter that is marginalized and disregarded but extremely important and serious for all women. Well done.

  • meteor_echo

    *sigh*
    *hugs*
    I’m so, so sorry, Lindsay. As a fellow survivor, I can only say – stay strong.

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  • LiteBrite

    But but…..you misunderstood him, see. You took his words out of context. That’s not what he meant at all. As usual, another clueless politician makes another asshole statement then backpedals and tries to say he “didn’t mean it like that.”

    Beautiful letter. However, I would be willing to bet it’s too much for his brain to comprehend.

    • LiteBrite

      Aw crap. The sarcasm tag was supposed to be at the end of the last paragraph.

      I just don’t want anything to think that last sentence was meant as sarcasm. It wasn’t. I said it in all seriousness.

  • To Celebrate Women

    Twist his words by quoting him verbatim. Don’t you love Republican logic?

    During this election cycle, I have concluded that the GOP, the American political system, the government, the courts, and society in general are made up of men who hate women – or at the very least, created to cater to them. Only a complete overhaul is going to change anything. Men can be sympathetic, maybe. But they can never understand. And what they don’t understand, they tend to fear. Especially if Romney wins, it will soon be dangerous to be a woman in the USA. Without a huge turn in the opposite direction, America’s daughters are going to live a much diminished life.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Shelly-Lloyd/826469442 Shelly Lloyd

    To Lindsay Cross and others who have bravely written about their experience. Thank you for sharing your stories and writing your letters. I have never been where you are, and you are doing a very brave thing by sharing a very personal experience in the hopes that those in power will hear and understand. Your bravery will hopefully mean that if any other women find themselves in the difficult situation that you were forced to be in, that there will at least be a safe and legal option. For that I thank you.

  • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

    I’ve never had to deal with a pregnancy resulting from rape (thank you, Depo Provera), but this… this… unpleasant person is saying that every time a woman is raped, beaten, pushed around, belittled, or otherwise abused, it’s all part of “God’s plan”.

    Fuck. That.

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  • Adam Cai

    I really like this site

  • Justme

    For someone who claims to be such a Christian, this politician does not seem to have a clear understanding of who God is and what He does. PEOPLE make the choice to rape, kill, abuse, neglect and assault – this kind of evil is not a work of God.

    I’m so sorry for your experiences Lindsay and even sorrier that these ignorant jerks are forcing you to feel the need to defend what you went through and how you feel about it.

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  • lalala

    “God” should have no place in politics ANYWAY. So really what he’s saying is completely ridiculous on every single level. You keep calling these assh*les out, good for you!

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  • Eamn

    God intends for everything to happen. Not liking it or not understanding it doesn’t matter.

  • http://www.whatwouldshethink.com/ Rachelle

    It takes a woman with strong shoulders and a big heart to open her story up like that so that others can recognize themselves and perhaps spread compassion. Nothing but love xox

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