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Marine had baby on ship in war zone

Military US Women in combat

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#1 jon3831

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Posted 11 June 2003 - 06:32 PM

Story

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A Marine gave birth aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Boxer in the Persian Gulf last month, marking what Pentagon officials believe is the first time an active-duty woman delivered a baby on a combat ship in a war zone.

Quote

A Pentagon official said the Marine in this case told superiors that she did not know she was pregnant.

Quote

Marine Corps headquarters, in response to an inquiry from The Washington Times, released a statement yesterday:
    "The medical staff of the USS Boxer delivered a 7-pound baby boy on board the ship May 23 at 10:58 p.m. The mother, a 33-year-old U.S. Marine staff sergeant, is assigned to Headquarters Battery 11th Marines as an administrative chief. Mother and baby, both healthy and in good condition, were transported from Boxer to the New al Mowasat Hospital in Salmiya, Kuwait. Following a short stay, they will travel to San Diego. Names are being withheld until immediate family has been notified."

Interesting...

Very interesting...

I need to think on this some... Any thoughts?
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#2 Rhea

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Posted 11 June 2003 - 10:06 PM

The dog ate my homework.  :lol:  :lol:

No way. There's too much involved in a pregnancy for a woman not to know, unless she's learning disabled, in which case she doesn't belong in the military.  :suspect:
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#3 Morrhigan

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Posted 11 June 2003 - 11:28 PM

^I find it hard to believe, too... but I have heard of other cases in which a woman gave birth without having known she was pregnant.

Not sure how this affects the "women in combat" debate. It's not like it's gonna happen all that often. :p

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#4 sierraleone

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 04:04 AM

I've heard of cases where woman didn't know... the only way I could see it happening if their weight fluctuaty often, and they just ignorn/thought the other symptoms were something else :p I agree with it not be common enough to really affect the debate though... unless she and others purposesly hold information like this back :wacko:
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#5 Anastashia

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 04:45 AM

I do seem to recall that the initial reasons for reassigning pregnant women from a ship had to do with a risk to the fetus from the miniscule movements that the ship had in the water even when berthed. I don't know if subsequent medical information has superceded this.

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#6 sierraleone

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 04:56 AM

^ that wouldn't make any sense... unless it was something *particular* to the movements of ocean water (which doesn't really sound plausible to me). But Pregnant women still drive/ride vehicles with a ton of other normal movement in day to day life so this just doesn't stand up.
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#7 QueenTiye

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 06:10 AM

I find it hard to imagine a 33 year old woman not knowing that she is pregnant.  Practically impossible.  Does anyone have any medical knowledge that justifies this?

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#8 Rov Judicata

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 06:15 AM

Having never been pregnant, I wouldn't know if it's possible to be pregnant and not know it.

Unless I'm pregnant now and unaware..... :suspect:

Anyway, that is an interesting twist. I don't think it affects the overall argument, but I think it's obvious a pregnant woman has no place in the battlefield. It would, however, be near impossible to give all female soldiers a pregnancy test every month. Given that, there are bound to be marines that slip through the cracks.
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#9 sierraleone

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 06:37 AM

^ there'd probably be someone who'd say you should say pregnant person instead (as if it wouldn't be obvious it was refering to women) and someone going further to say give all soldiers pregnancy tests if you're going to give them to some  :D  :D  :D

Thanks for the laugh before that though Rov  :D  :D  :D
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#10 rhuhne

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 06:59 AM

Javert Rovinski, on Jun 11 2003, 12:19 PM, said:

there are bound to be marines that slip through the cracks.
I'm not clear...are you speaking of the baby?..or what? :unsure:  :lol:

#11 Kosh

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 07:11 AM

I think there are to many chemical changes in a womans body for her not to know she was pregnant. Size can be decieving, others may not realize she is pregnant, but she is going to know something is up.
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#12 Bossy

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 03:11 PM

^Yeah, especially when the baby starts kicking and moving around.

#13 TravelerOfTheWays

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 04:08 PM

I've heard of a very few cases like this (well, not from terribly credible sources), and as those women have always been quite large, I really cannot see how a Marine would have that problem.  I think most of us are agreed that she was lying about not knowing she was pregnant.


It is reasonably possible that she didn't know she was pregnant when she first stepped aboard the ship, but the quote does sound like she puported to be in complete ignorance till the kid popped out.  What a mental picture that is  :blink:


So, what do we all think of this, eh?  Do I detect a debate over women in the military?? :unsure:


EDIT after reading Ishmael's post.  Ahhh so we don't all agree she knew she was pregnant!  And your example was a good one--I, at least, concede that it is conceivable (erm...).  Still, though, being a Marine and all fitness-y, I'm going to wager that she did know and "didn't want to let the team down".

Edited by TravelerOfTheWays, 12 June 2003 - 04:15 PM.

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#14 Rov Judicata

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 04:09 PM

LOL Sierra, APOTS!

Rhuhne-- Would I make such a crass pun? :eek2:
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Me: "I have a job and five credit cards and am looking into signing a two year lease.  THAT MAKES ME OLD."
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#15 Ishmael Autolycus

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 04:11 PM

Well, I have to say I'm of two minds about this. On the one hand it is entirely possible that she really didn't know she was pregnant.

Now before anybody jumps all over me on this, a friend of mine some years ago discovered she was five months pregnant when she went to the doctor's office complaining of stomach problems. Apparently whatever mechanism stops a woman from having a period malfunctioned and she was still having her periods. Apparently that's very, very rare, but it does happen. And since my friend is tall (over 6 foot) even in her ninth month she didn't show more than a slight bump under a loose shirt. So if this happened and the pregnancy was an otherwise easy one, it is entirely possible she didn't know.

On the other hand, how much time is left on the Boxer's deployment? It's entirely possible that she "didn't want to let the team down" as it were, and thought she had more time. And was the baby full-term or a preemie?
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#16 rhuhne

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 05:22 PM

Javert Rovinski, on Jun 11 2003, 10:13 PM, said:

LOL Sierra, APOTS!

Rhuhne-- Would I make such a crass pun? :eek2:
Maybe not...but I would ;)

#17 Nikcara

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 05:35 PM

Well, it's possible she didn't know, depending on a few factors.  One is denial - and some people can cram a whole lot of that into their brains, trust me.  If she really, REALLY didn't want to have a kid, that may have been the case

Another is that since I assume marines tend to be quite fit, some women have their period less often when they exercise a lot.  It happened to me when I was on the swim team (ok, more info then maybe some of you wanted to know) and I know it happens to other girls too.  She could have thought that's why she wasn't having her period.

I also know a woman who was told by her doctors that she couldn't have kids.  One day, her period stopped and her belly started growing.  She thought it was a tumor, and since she was so afraid of being diagnosed with a tumor, she refused to go to the doctor (I never understood that logic) until she was having labor pains that were so instense she couldn't bear the pain ad called 911.

However, these cases are few and far between.  I'm still not sure what to make on the marine.
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#18 Bossy

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 04:16 AM

^Also, some women who take the pill cease having their period because they are so sensative to the hormomes. (If only we all could be so lucky!) Also, it is possible to become pregnant while taking birth conrtol pills, although the possibility is very low. I think the effectiveness rate is something like 99.4%. I could be off a bit on the fraction, but it is over 99%.

Most women, I think, assume if taken properly, the pill is 100% effective. So, it is possible that this marine assumed that she could not become pregnant. However, I still find it hard to believe that she could get into the latter trimester and not realize she was pregnant. All of the women I have know in the stage of pregancy, and there are a lot of them as my family is very large and productive, had very visable signs of prenancy. Even my cousin who is very tall and barely shows, still had a bit of a bulge that moved everytime her babies kicked. They all have tales of their babies kicking them in the ribs or elsewhere and feelings like the baby was doing flips inside. I can't imagine how that kind of activity could go unnoticed by the mother.


#19 Rov Judicata

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 04:28 AM

Somewhat off topic, but here's the FDA's guide to birth control:

http://www.fda.gov/f.../conceptbl.html

If the pill is taken properly, the odds of pregnancy are no higher than 0.5%. With typical use, it rises to 5% over one year.
St. Louis must be destroyed!

Me: "I have a job and five credit cards and am looking into signing a two year lease.  THAT MAKES ME OLD."
Josh: "I don't have a job, I have ONE credit card, I'm stuck in a lease and I'm 28! My mom's basement IS ONE BAD DECISION AWAY!"
~~ Josh, winning the argument.

"Congress . . . shall include every idiot, lunatic, insane person, and person non compos mentis[.]" ~1 U.S.C. 1, selectively quoted for accuracy.

#20 maryavatar

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:06 AM

My mother made it to almost 6 months pregnant with my brother (her fourth pregnancy) before she noticed, and she's only 4'11.

In my antenatal class when I had Spawn #1 was a woman who only found out she was pregnant because of a routine X-ray.  She was 7 months along at the time.  She carried on having light periods right up until she went into labour.

The three-month contraceptive injection supresses periods too.  I've heard countless tales of women who had been taking that and ended up have pregnancies diagnosed late.  When I was using it my doctor always insisted on doing a pregnancy test a few days beforehand, just to be on the safe side.
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