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Should a past abortion be used against a woman in a custody trial?

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Judge Orders Woman to Talk About Her Abortion During Custody Trial

by Kiri Blakeley

An abortion is personal business. But one woman who is involved in a nasty custody battle has been ordered by a judge to talk about her abortion in the courtroom. The woman, Lisa Mehos, is in the middle of a custody dispute with her husband, a wealthy banker named Manuel John Mehos, over their two children. For some reason the man's lawyer was able to subpoena Lisa Mehos' medical records, where he found out she had had an abortion -- he was not responsible for the pregnancy and the couple were together at the time. So what on Earth does this have to do with custody arrangements?

The lawyer, Eleanor Alter, apparently tried to use the abortion to prove that Lisa Mehos was a "hypocrite" because she didn't want her ex-husband to have the kids over Easter, since he was an "atheist."

Additionally, since the woman had testified that she'd had no men over in front of her children, the judge thought it relevant that she'd had an abortion (uh, can children not be conceived somewhere besides in front of children?). Also, the lawyer argued that since Lisa Mehos is saying her husband is causing her "stress" -- she wants to prove that perhaps it is the abortion that caused her stress.

Anyway, this sounds like one helluva contentious divorce. All kinds of things are being thrown into the mix here. I just have no idea what an abortion has to do with anything. The lawyer reportedly said:

This is a woman who complains that she’s under great stress only caused by Mr. Mehos. I would be the first person to acknowledge that having an abortion, especially a two- to three-month late abortion, would be stressful.

Wow, I'm glad the lawyer seems to know what Lisa Mehos is feeling! An abortion can cause stress for sure, but it might also not cause stress. It is quite possible that a nasty divorce battle causes MUCH more stress than an abortion.

Why is this anyone's business? This is a legal medical procedure. It seems like the abortion is just being thrown into the case to embarrass Lisa Mehos (not that she should be embarrassed) and to bring some moral judgment down on her.

Since the ex-husband reportedly once tearfully confessed to his wife that he'd cheated on her with dozens of prostitutes, and he reportedly was arrested for hitting her in front of their children, he is really the one who should be embarrassed.

Shame on the judge for ordering this.

What do you think of an abortion being used against a woman in a custody trial?

by on Sep. 26, 2013 at 8:26 AM
Replies (41-42):
by Thatwoman on Sep. 26, 2013 at 11:47 PM
1 mom liked this

To the question in the headline alone:


Full stop.

by Teflon Don on Sep. 26, 2013 at 11:52 PM

Quoting supercarp:

Medical information is priviledged. How did the judge find out about it in the first place?It is not admissable as evidence in court. It is irrelevant in a custody case as is an ovarian cyst.

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