I am unashamedly pro-life. I don’t apologize as I proudly stand in defense for life. However, this wasn’t always the case.
I faced a crisis pregnancy decades ago. It was shortly after Roe v. Wade became national law. Not wanting to disappoint my parents, I believed the mantra a co-worker told me, “It’s your body, you can do anything you want. Just have an abortion.” I followed her advice and lived to regret it. Outwardly, I was an ardent pro-abortion rights advocate to anyone who would listen (I was trying to justify my action). But deep down, I had a hole in my soul and used anything I could find to numb that emotional pain.
Over time, science and sonogram technology began proving when life begins — at conception.
But just because I now knew when life began, I still had a lot to learn about the affects of abortion. Many believe that women can have an abortion, and that it won’t further affect anyone after the termination of the pregnancy. This is untrue. You start with the baby, but it doesn’t stop there. The abortion affects the mother, emotionally and physically. Abortion is an unnatural process that interrupts one of the primary functions of the human body. A woman’s body naturally resists the abortion, causing physical and emotional problems.
The majority of women in a crisis pregnancy aren’t informed about the side-effects of abortion. The Supreme Court, in 1986, ruled that women don’t have to be informed about these risks before the abortion. As a result, 80% of women who have had abortions said their counselors gave “…little or no information about the potential health risks which might follow the surgery.” and 68% felt “…the procedure was not described with any degree of depth of clarity.” Good healthcare begins with good information – pros and cons – to any procedure.
In 1963, Planned Parenthood’s ‘Plan Your Children’ pamphlet stated, “An abortion kills the life of a baby after it has begun. It is dangerous to your life and health.” What happened in the span of 10 years when Roe v. Wade was passed? Did it suddenly become safe?
Abortion doesn’t just affect the women who have abortions and the babies aborted. In the late 1960s and early 1970s abortion rights supporters promised that through the legalization of abortion, society would be improved. Fewer teenagers would become pregnant. Child abuse would drop. Children would only live in homes that could support them. Children would live in more loving homes and crime rates would drop. Yet, either because of or coincidentally with the ruling of Roe v. Wade, history has shown the opposite. Abortion has opened up a “back way out.” Our society, and the children who have grown up in an abortion-filled world, have been negatively affected. Since abortion was legalized in 1973, the number of reported cases of child abuse has increased by 1,497%, from 167,000 in 1973 to 2.5 million in 1991.
While some women admit they experience relief after an abortion, there are approximately 80% who will experience some degree of Post Abortion Stress (subset of PTSD). About 20% of those women experiencing PAS will have life-altering symptoms (alcoholism, drug addiction, depression leading to suicide). All too often, the women who experience psychological and emotional wounds after abortion will keep to themselves. In the counseling world, “secrets kill.”
God brought me to a place where I no longer beat myself up and accepted His forgiveness for my past. I was then able to help those who have been wounded after abortion. Once I began to understand when life began, my world changed. Now I’m a staunch defender of life from the womb to the tomb. While the debate surrounding life issues is volatile, I will not pass judgment on someone who chooses abortion. I will be a listening ear whenever that person needs to talk about the grief they experienced.
One in three women in this country have experienced an abortion. If someone you know is having difficulty with their decision, please share this post.
Psalm 139:13 “For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother’s womb.”