No decision in the world is more personal than whether to give of your own body for someone else.
Although some donations, like blood, are relatively simple procedures, others, like marrow and organs, require invasive medical procedures, recovery time, and inherent health risks.
The only person who gets to decide whether they want to go through with that and donate is the person who owns the organ or marrow, and everyone else should absolutely respect that decision.
But It’s Family!
One man learned the hard way that people don’t respect other’s bodily autonomy. His stepmom flipped out over his refusal to donate a kidney to her son, his stepbrother, whom he barely knows.
“She believes that because we’re now part of the same family, I should be willing to make this sacrifice for her son,” reported the Original Poster (OP).
But Not Really
The OP clarified that he barely knows his stepbrother. He’s 14 years older, and they never bonded. They’re cordial, but that’s where the relationship ends.
OP Has Good Organs Though
Here’s where it gets creepy. The stepmom seems to think she’s entitled to OP’s body to help her son because of his “strong genetics” and “healthy organs.”
“According to her, we’ve always lived until a very old age with no kidney problems, she literally said that we have “great quality organs,” said OP, clearly taken aback by these weird comments.
She Refuses To Donate
Making matters even worse, the stepmom refuses even to consider donating herself, citing her religious objections to the procedure.
She says it’s okay if OP does it, though, because he’s agnostic anyway.
Is OP Wrong for Refusing
The stepmom won’t stop pressuring OP. She says they’re family, and family supports each other. She also reminds OP of something he said a while ago, indicating that he’d always do anything in his power to help family.
She feels he’s going back on that promise, but he feels like she’s asking way too much.
He came to the Internet to see if he was wrong.
An Outrageous Request
Users flocked to OP’s defense, calling the stepmother’s request outrageous, inappropriate, and unhinged.
“People are very generous with other people’s organs!” exclaimed one.
“This lady is nuts,” said another.
Shady Religious Reasons
Many mocked her insistence that she couldn’t donate herself due to religious beliefs. Although there are a few denominations that prohibit organ donation, it says a lot that she doesn’t mind if her son receives an organ. That makes people question whether she’s against donation or just refuses to sacrifice of herself for her son.
“Why doesn’t she just use her religion to pray his sickness away instead of using it as an excuse?” asked one.
“Tell her if her religion bars her then take it up with god,” advised another.
“What religion is opposed to donating an organ, but allows someone to be a recipient of one?” demanded a third.
Your Body, Your Choice
It doesn’t really matter whether the religious beliefs were genuine or an excuse.
No one has the right to another person’s body, blood, or organs. Bodily autonomy is a crucial right, one that many of us know all too well can be stripped away.
Any surgery or medical procedure is a big deal, and no one should ever force anyone else to undertake it or the risks associated.
“Kidney donation is a BIG deal, with very real risks both physical and psychological,” said one user.
“Your choice entirely. Nothing wrong with your decision,” said another.
Ultimately, each one of us should have the final say over what happens with our bodies. OP is well within his rights to refuse.