Andrea (2017) – Costa Rica

Young incest victim forced to give birth to her father’s child

Andrea was a pregnant victim of incest at 12 years old. In February 2017, her mother went public about the sexual violence Andrea had suffered from her father. “After she told me about what happened with her father, she became extremely anxious and told me she didn’t want to exist in this world any longer because of everything that had happened.” Andrea is depressed, says her mother, barely eating, suffering extreme nausea from the pregnancy and says she does not want to have the baby.

In Costa Rica, it’s legal to terminate pregnancy when the life or health of the woman is at risk, but the lack of a technical protocol that provides legal protection to doctors who perform abortions meant that the medical procedure was never offered. In practice, public hospitals in Costa Rica refuse to offer the procedure except when a woman’s life is in imminent danger, such as in the case of an ectopic pregnancy.

Rather than call for Costa Rican law to be enforced, the media offered a platform for religious figures to voice their opinions. Churches and anti-choice organisations contacted the girl and her mother, trying to convince them not to pursue the idea of terminating the pregnancy. Andrea was forced to become a mother at 13, giving birth to her father’s child.

Read full article: Incest Case Attests That, In Costa Rica, Abortion Is Legal In Name Only. Huffington Post.