Blogger Becca Bueshausen came under intense scrutiny from an online community this week after they uncovered her posts about being pregnant with a terminally ill baby were false. Bueshausen wrote about her decision to carry the sick child to term, but she was not actually pregnant. Earlier in the week she spoke to the Chicago Tribune, but she has refused other requests to speak with the media. She sent the following apology to ABC News, which she also posted on her personal blog.
Becca Bueshausen's Apology to ReadersI am sorry.
I know this post will not change what has been done. I don't expect it to, but I do hope it helps with some of the hurt that I have caused.
I have come to know a lot about some of you in the last few months through your shared words with me, and I now want to tell you some about me. Not, "April's Mom," not the fiction, just ME...
I am a 26 year old woman who loves to draw and paint. I've worked for years in the social service (not a liscensed [sic] social worker; never said I was) field. I am a Christian and while I wrote many of my posts under false contexts, the God I shared with all of you and wrote about is still God; the Creator or [sic] life, Father and Savior.
In my life I've had good days and I have also dealt with a lot of pain, including the sorrow over the loss of life. I don't say that to garner your sympathy or to lessen your anger. I say it because it is true. Was the loss present day? No. But true, none the less. In my "calendar past," perhaps, but still very much so in my present day to day.
I lied and I am not trying to hide that, nor am I trying to minimize it. Worse still, I lied to a community of people whose only intention was to support me through this time and that is wrong, and for that I am sorrier than you could know.
The #1 question I have been asked in the last few days is what I would tell people online who followed my story, who are now upset to find it is not true. -- The simplest and most honest way that I can answer why I started lying (even prior to my blog) and started my blog is that I am struggling. I have been dealing with unresolved pain that weighs heavy on my heart and which I have been unable to handle alone.
Like I referenced above, I am no stranger to losing a baby. I have suffered this type of loss, more than once, and while the circumstances and time frames vary (spanning from between my college years through just this last year), the pain is very constant.
Is what I have explained above and the other pains that are unseen and only in my heart an excuse for all of this? -- No. Absoltely not. But I will be the first to say I don't even understand all of my actions.
I never imagined the magnititude of all of this; the lies, the relationships formed, the entire thing ...
I started writing and people responded. Almost overnight I was receiving e-mails from people who at one point had been pregnant and unmarried, or had suffered loss, or were Christian but believed in the sanctity of life in all circumstances. It was like nothing I had ever experienced in my own life, or anything I ever expected. In part, I was just so surprised by the response. It taught me that not all Christian circles are the same and it really gave me a glimpse of something that my eyes had been closed to. And as my readership grew, I just continued to feed the story.
Hoax Blogger Explains She's "Struggling
While the main subject matter around my blog was a sick baby, the posts weren't all about that. I wrote on many occassions about life and issues and faith. All things that are important to me (believe it or not). Again, I am not trying to excuse my actions, but much of the emotion, much of the pain, much of the thoughts that I wrote about are things I have felt deeply and personally ...
A young, scared woman who didn't know how to handle an unplanned pregnancy. A woman who wasn't accepted by a Church community and/or other Christians. A woman who has struggled knowing love, however deep, is not always enough. A woman who has weighed and lived the abortion vs. life choices firsthand. A woman who has questioned God and her in the midst of hard times.
That woman is me.
And a few other things about me... I really do believe in the power of prayer. I really am< pro-life. Tragedy really does change you. And I really am a Christian. However weak, however messed up -- a struggling, Christian... Still.
I'll come back to this, but now want to address some of the general questions:
Regarding donations: I received a limited number of gifts through my P.O. box. A baby hat, a pair of little shoes, a hair bow, a crocheted blanket, etc. I never once received a check or cash in the mail. Ever. (I have not been to my P.O. box in a few weeks and will not be going back. I assume any sitting mail will be returned to sender).
I have heard that there are people who are saying on various blogs that so and so sent me a card with a check for $50.00, or another woman saying that she sent $300.00+ in a check or others who have sent gift cards my way, etc. I am not sure why people are saying these things, but they are entirely false.
And those gifts I mentioned above? -- I have boxed these up and a close friend of mine will be donating these to a local agency.
(There are a few of you who sent me items and since this news has spread, have asked for payment. If you sent me something in this manner, I will be refunding you via paypal when I am financially able. If you want to contact me privately about this, feel free to e-mail me here: firstname.lastname@example.org).
Regarding web access and communication: I am aware that many people are posting comments and talking on forums online regarding me communicating with them. This is false. I don't know if the people who are speaking like this are doing so out of ignorance on their part or for the spreading of lies. But I do know that if you are getting e-mails from someone who claims to be me, you are not talking to me. I did not open my computer for more than 4 days after all of this was exposed, and since I have opened it, I have gotten online only very briefly.
It serves me no good to see what people are saying, but I do hear some of the "highlights" from people close to me, and most recently people have claimed I have been e-mailing them. Again, I have not e-mailed anyone all week. Additionally, while I have seen these hate blogs surrounding this topic and myself, I am not sitting on them reading your comments. An accusation I have also been aware of.
Right now, I am living life hour by hour. I am struggling and the last thing on my mind is checking these forums, or commenting under made up names. There is just no credibility in these accusations. So no, I am not on your forums, I am not lurking around this blog or that, and I am certainly not e-mailing anyone.
Regarding the Media: I have received phone calls and e-mails all week but have NO intention on talking with any more media outlets at this point. The article that the Chicago Tribune ran listed some inaccurate quotes, dates, and details and I do not want to further put myself out there in a format that is far from controlled (and I mean no disrespect to the Tribune in saying this, I have just recently learned first hand a lot about some of the media).
At this point the only "sources" in which I have sat down with/spoken directly to is the Chicago Tribune and only very recently, Good Morning America (ABC network). Doing so in order to set the record straight and correct other unsubstantiated things that are being spread.
"Sorry for the Lies."If I was doing all of this for attention and for money, believe me, the opportunities are there, but I have not said yes. Besides the above reason...
The issues that my blog has started a bit of chatter about; both being pro-life and being a Christian, are both (believe it or not) very important to me. Of course, I want to protect myself, but I also want to protect these issues. I don't feel the need to exploit either the Christian community or the sanctity of human life any further than has already happened.
All other reasons aside: The hurt and deceit started here and so I find this avenue the best in which to address these things. It started here and it can end here.
Regarding various "handles": There are people spreading that I used the following 2 screen names to up the traffic on my blog (and in turn, make more money). 1. "Resolved2Worship" 2. "mamarebeccah"
Not true. I would love to be able to prove this with IP address links, but unfortunately do not know how to do that, in this case, but do want to set the record straight that this is false. And I guess, continuing in that direction...
Regarding Blogher advertisements: I was contacted pretty shortly after I opened up my blog by a company called Blogher. They were interested in putting various advertisements on my site and paying me in exchange for this service. I did agree and the ads were placed up on my site. The details of this included ads having to be run for a minimum of 45 days before the first payment would be sent out. I never made it to 45 days, and so all of the rumors about how I have recieved thousands of dollars off Blogher ads on my blog (some people are saying upwards of $20,000+) should be put to rest. Due to all of this exposure and a violation of their terms I received a lump sum of $0.
A final note to all:
I am sorry. Sorry for the lies, sorry for it all.
I need to take all of the responsibility for this. I acted alone and need all of you to understand that.
I am aware that there have been many things stated on blogs about me. I get that many of you are angry. I get that some of you want revenge. I get that you several of you are hurt. Again, I can't say I am sorry enough. It will never be enough. But know that I haven't written this because I have to, or feel obligated. I also didn't blog for the dollar, or intend to cause this mess (again, believe it or not).
My heart was in so many of the posts I did publish, and there is real background in many of the things I expressed. And while all of this (in regards to the present day) was "just" a story, this isn't just a line... The Lord has been all over me about this to the point of emotional, mental, spiritual and physical exhaustion and pain this week. In just a few days I have realized the extent of my need for help with past unresolved issues, and for that I believe I can be thankful.
Some are saying, "Let it go, people are entitled to write fiction," and "It is the readers who need to beware." Others think I should be burned at the stake. I will just say that I have sought His forgiveness and I am also now seeking yours. I know some won't want to forgive, I know some aren't Christians so don't feel the need to, and I know some just plain won't, but regardless, I am sincerely asking you all anyways, that you will forgive me and understand on some level that I am a broken woman, who is ready and willing to try and put back together these pieces and know I can only do that with Christ's help. He isn't a crutch, but He is who I need, day in and day out. These days. maybe more than ever. I hope you will one day be able to find it in your heart to forgive me, no matter what your degree of hate or anger is presently. I am not expecting this today, just someday.
Sorry to Strangers, Sorry to Friends
I truly am sick of running from my pain and sick of escaping the hurts that make up my past. I have now been forced to look at these things with eyes wide open and know I have a very long road ahead of me, but one I am willing to walk, one small step at a time, until I get to where I need to be. -- That is no fabrication, no edit, just truth.
As odd as it may seem, I cared about this community. I cared about all the H.W.W. requests and all of you who shared personal stories with me along the way. I can relate to many of you who wrote, even if my relation is not present day. And while I could say "I am sorry" countless times, the truth is you can't know my heart, nor can I make my words well received. But, I AM SORRY. -- Sorry to strangers. Sorry to friends. And sorry for those of you who through this process became my "friends" online.
2 weeks ago I wrote the following, having know idea how much it would mean to me and how much more true it would ring, just days later...
"We can't do this life on our own. Or, well, I will speak for myself; I know, I can't do it on my own. But more than that, I have been created by God, for God, in love. And He lives in and through me, and He weeps when I weep.
And, yes, it does feel horrible at times. But He said that He will never leave me or forsake me, and that nothing and nobody can take me from His hands. And I don't know how all of this works out, but I believe that if I continue to do what He wants me to do, tomorrow will be better. And if tomorrow doesn't seem less painful and alone, than the next day, or maybe the next.
One thing I do know is that the hurt can't be forever, because this (life) isn't forever, and knowing that promise from Him to me, from Him to you, makes the hardest parts of life a bit easier to bear."
Seeking your forgiveness, Beccah
(And if you would, could you please visit this site, which highlights nearly 100 real families of real T13 babies actively living with this disease or struggling with such a diagnosis. These women and families and little ones need support).