At Living Alternatives in Tyler, Texas we would like to become a prototype of how a community can better handle the issue of unplanned pregnancies.

Have you ever gone to a city where things are different?

Not long after I moved to the Smith County, Tyler TX area from the very large city of Los Angeles, I had an experience that changed my perspective about how things are supposed to work.

I had a flat tire. I pulled over to the side of the road and started to change my tire like I had done in the L.A. area many times. I experienced something that had never happened to me in L.A.

Within the course of 5 minutes, 3 different people stopped and asked if I needed help. I was in shock. In L.A. people are afraid if they stop to help it could be the last thing they do.

It occurred to me later that this is the way it was meant to be. Communities that take care of each other and lend a hand to those in a tough spot.

I think Tyler / Smith county region is an ideal place to show the rest of the nation how it’s supposed to be when it comes to ladies with unplanned pregnancies.

Approximately 1 in 3 pregnancies ends in abortion. Since roughly 85% of all abortions are performed on single women, how can a community change the narrative? How can we turn those averages on their head? 

I believe we can paint a new picture. 

If the ladies in our community find a supportive and non-judgmental group who provides compassion, support, and relationship. If they find real answers and partnership through their entire pregnancy and after.

When the ladies enter our doors at AXIA they find a group of medical professionals and volunteer counselors that help them through the initial shock of a positive pregnancy test and ultrasound. 

After receiving the news of their pregnancy we offer assistance with birthing classes, doulas, and parenting classes. After the birth of the child, we help with baby clothes, formula, strollers, and car seats.

The Smith County community has the opportunity to model a living alternative to abortion that can offer a better way forward to the entire country.

Most of the women who choose abortion are single and are walking through the process alone. When they know they aren’t condemned or rejected for their pregnancy they often choose life. Abortion is often a choice of someone who is abandoned, ashamed and scared. If we can offer hope, help and assistance it can be the difference in saving the life of the baby and saving the mother from a decision she will grieve over the rest of her life. 

Is it possible that a community like Tyler, TX could blaze a new trail when it comes to life? Can we set an example for other communities about what it looks like when those women don’t choose abortion?

I believe we can.

Steve Roquemore


Exectutive Director