"What made you regret your decision to have an abortion?"

| 3 Comments

In this post's combox, this question was raised.

It isn't the first time I've been asked this. It's worth posting the answer, though, given the amount of blogging I've been doing here, the ire and angst it's raised, and the fact that many visitors don't read comments.

I've kept a pretty low profile here, but some PLB readers know that I'm one of the 2 longtime co-bloggers at the After Abortion blog. My story is something I've been writing about online for almost the past 6 years. The shortest telling is here, and answers how I could go from seemingly supportive of abortion to being so against it.

It took 10 years for my grief to start surfacing, but even then, I'd stuff it back down. It took a full 22 years for it to break through my denial completely. Now, every day, I live with the sorrow of that "choice" that I can never undo.

This link has other parts of my story in columns I wrote for CatholicExchange.com.

Here, I speak of the angry "pro-life" man who called me a "murderer" when I ran into the abortion clinic and who is still out there today calling women that, and how I tried, unsuccessfully, to silence him.

This tells what happened after I started dealing with my regret, and what After Abortion is for.

To commenters DDTKW, Deanna, Courtney and les for life, thank you for writing, for your compassion and your honesty. I've long written numerous articles exposing the lies of Planned Parenthood and others, and I too agree that everyone, women included, needs to see the truth that is in the Eduardo Verastegui video, for the tide to turn against the hideousness that abortion is.

I only differ with you slightly: on the TIMING of when post-abortive women should see it.

The first time I saw the gory pictures, it wasn't until after I'd gone on my confidential Rachel's Vineyard retreat and had really begun dealing with, and speaking and writing about my regret and withstanding the intense and vicious attacks (the worst of which were here). I had started healing (one never finishes this process, by the way) and had been strengthened by helping others avoid or heal from abortion, and yet, I almost threw up and broke down right there in public.

If I hadn't gone on Rachel's Vineyard before seeing those pictures, I'd have had a mental breakdown or committed suicide, as many young women have done even without having seen the photos.

I know that true pro-life folks do not want such harm to come to anyone who is even starting to doubt that their abortions were a good thing. I can't stress enough that unless you have done what we've done, there is no way to know how much serious harm can be done by the visual jolt of what we already know, deep in our hearts, we have done.

For those of you who are religious, think "The Passion of the Christ" movie and the revulsion Judas felt for himself upon seeing what he had wrought.

So, that first time I'd seen those photos, years after my abortion, I truly saw what abortion really did and that the "products of abortion" were real human babies. When the angry prolife man had tried to show me those pictures 29 years ago, I had refused to look at them, so it wouldn't get to me. Afterward, I got so good at blocking out all thought of what I was doing, it lasted for 22 years.

In this post, I explain further why I am ambivalent about the gory pictures.

DDTKW asked how folks can best reach women's minds to avoid abortion. The answer is to reach their hearts. As I wrote, "If someone had shown me they cared about me or offered to pray with or help me, I don't think I would have done what I did. But no one did, then."

Even though there are a few angry old men shouting "murderer" still and they get all the ink of the mainstream media, they are a passing generation and will soon be gone. That one who screamed at me has to be in his late 80s now at least. I don't wish ill on anyone, even one so condemning and judgmental as he, but the difference is now seen in the hundreds of crisis pregnancy centers who have continued to deliver, for years, concrete help to women every day to avoid abortions. It's in the hundreds of thousands of volunteers at those CPCs.

Lastly, though no one has asked the question, it's worthwhile to bring this up:

How many women regret our abortions?

There are two studies published in the Canadian Medical Journal and in the British Medical Journal which both found that there is a 60% concealment rate when female subjects are being studied for depression effects after abortion. That means that only 40% of women in the studies who actually had abortions either truthfully reported having had abortions or were correctly classified as having had one or more abortions.

As a result of this concealment rate, the following link describes another survey that when taken together with the concealment rate, shows that there could be a half million post-abortive American women who now regret our abortions:

In a study done in 2000, 78% of National Abortion Rights Action League's membership was female, while 63% of National Right to Life Committee's was female. 32% of NARAL's women members admitted having had an abortion. Only 3% of NRL women had had an abortion. The Encyclopedia of Associations showed that NARAL had a total membership of 156,000; NRL, 12 million.

32% of 78% of 156,000 gives 39,000 such members, while 3% of 63% of 12 million yields 226,800 women who have had abortions.

Six times more women who become active in this issue regret their abortions, or six out of every seven "activists."

If the total of 265,800 women admitting they had an abortion in that 2000 survey only represented 2 out of every 5 postabortive women (40% not concealing), then there likely are another 398,700 women whose abortions are concealed/underrerported, for whatever reason.

There's no way to know how many of those regret them, but the 2000 study showed that six out of every seven who became publicly active eventually regret the abortion. If that same ratio applies, then of those 398,700 concealing their abortions, perhaps as many as 341,740 more women regret their abortions.

Adding those two groups who regret could amount to 568,540 women who regret their abortions. Over half a million women.

Imagine this large a group as a voting bloc.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
If you are feeling sad or angry or empty or just confused and unsettled after an abortion, woman or man, even depressed over losing a sibling or relative to an abortion, there is help. The After Abortion blog was created to provide a safe place to find quick reference and access to those groups offering that confidential help and assistance. Just look in the sidebar at the right-hand side of that blog, at the top or under "RESOURCES FOR HEALING". Another great organization of women and men is Silent No More Awareness. Email or call Georgette Forney or Janet Morana or anyone there. You don't need my referral to contact them, you'll be welcomed there with open, nonjudgmental arms regardless. But if you ever do speak to Georgette or Janet, tell 'em "Annie Banno told me about Silent No More."

3 Comments

Annie,

Thanks a million for the post. I agree with you that the images seen prior to healing and in the throes of intense post abortive stress could potentially be devastating. AND I am not sure if most people in the pro life community realize HOW intense that stress syndrome is. When you talk about suicide you aren't kidding...I almost committed suicide as well and had been a very emotionally healthy woman up to the point of the abortion.

To answer your question regarding regret. I just have to say that the TRUTH is what convicted me. Immediately I was thrown into depression and shocked by it. When i started to question the presentation of Planned Parenthood of it being 'easy' etc...I started to regret it. I also really started to feel like a limb had been taken off of me...amputated..That was indeed the truth. My child had been stripped from me. I regretted acting on impulse and out of fear and I regretted missing out (and still do) on the life of my daughter who would be 27 around christmas this year.

I will say that I have not been met with the ire that you have been met with much but I mostly keep a lower profile but I am very talkative about it. For the most part people from the pro life communities have embraced me. But i agree that the images could be the very catalyst that pushes the woman over to take her own life when she is most vulnerable. Most post abortive women are not like you and I in speaking freely about the experiences so most are suffering in silence...and some never confront the experience. I am happy you have posted this to shed some light on the subject. IN all honesty because the photos (although hugely disturbing) don't push me into my old abyss..I had really forgotten myself about the ramifications that could occur in being shown to the wrong person. On the other hand I do know that many lives are saved these days also because we do know more about the life in the womb then we did 25-30 years ago when you and I had our abortions. It is a tough call. Show the pictures and save some lives or show them and potentially push a seriously dangerous button...I say we continue to pray for wisdom and be as sensitive as possible to the post abortive woman...and it helps to have some soldiers like yourself who have been on the battleground out there...

blessings,
deanna

Post abortion healing has two important elements: healing for those who have already been through abortions, and alleviation of the root causes of abortion.

Prolifers all too often have neglected the latter. It is past time for this to change.

Deanna, thanks so much for replying. I agree, you and I are in the minority of PA women (Postabortive) who are able to avoid slipping back into that abyss of misery and depression. I only pray that more women lurking" here might contact Rachel's Vineyard or one of the other groups on our sidebar at www.AfterAbortion.blogspot.com and start on that road.


Marysia, can you please clarify exactly what you mean? If you mean helping women avoid abortions in the first place, I'd beg to differ with you on 2 counts.

1) prolifers have more often in the past 30+ years neglected the former, not the latter! It's only been in the past decade that such groups as RV and the others have existed, and they have grown, but the numbers attending those are still not as prevalent as those who call themselves prolife.

2) prolifers have been helping alleviate the root causes of abortion for almost as long, by having all those crisis pregnancy centers here and abroad to help women at the direst hour of need, and by running soup kitchens and donations drives and the like from churches or other groups (those hated faith-based groups that Democrats are so against have done more than many govt. entities to freely give concrete help to women and families in need, all without taxpayer dollars), and by trying to re-instill a sense of real family, morals and virtue in our young people and our society, and by peeling back the need for abortion.




button02b.gif

Categories

Archives

Pro-Life Articles

add your site
Opinion Times Sep 23, 2017, 2:55 am
Opinion Times Sep 23, 2017, 4:29 am
Greater Fitchburg For Life Jan 1, 1970, 12:00 am
Greater Fitchburg For Life Sep 23, 2017, 4:20 am
DEACON FOR LIFE Sep 23, 2017, 3:15 am
DEACON FOR LIFE Jan 1, 1970, 12:00 am
Opinion Times Sep 23, 2017, 12:13 am
Opinion Times Sep 23, 2017, 12:13 am
Opinion Times Sep 23, 2017, 12:13 am
Opinion Times Sep 23, 2017, 12:13 am
Opinion Times Sep 23, 2017, 12:13 am
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 9:11 pm
Spero News Dec 31, 1969, 11:00 pm
BIG C CATHOLICS Sep 22, 2017, 10:39 pm
BIG C CATHOLICS Sep 22, 2017, 10:27 pm
Pro-Life Unity Jan 1, 1970, 12:00 am
Live Action Blog Sep 22, 2017, 9:27 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 10:03 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 9:50 pm
BIG C CATHOLICS Sep 22, 2017, 9:22 pm
Rebelution Sep 22, 2017, 8:49 pm
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 9:12 pm
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 9:12 pm
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 9:12 pm
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 9:12 pm
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 9:12 pm
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 9:17 pm
Live Action Blog Sep 22, 2017, 4:41 pm
Live Action Blog Sep 22, 2017, 8:31 pm
Live Action Blog Sep 22, 2017, 4:29 pm
Live Action Blog Sep 22, 2017, 8:51 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 8:32 pm
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 7:35 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 22, 2017, 10:38 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 22, 2017, 10:39 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 7:56 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 7:45 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 7:33 pm
BIG C CATHOLICS Sep 22, 2017, 6:00 pm
BIG C CATHOLICS Sep 22, 2017, 6:05 pm
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 7:14 pm
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 6:32 pm
NoisyRoom.net Sep 22, 2017, 7:13 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 7:15 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 5:32 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 5:57 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 6:56 pm
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 6:06 pm
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 6:21 pm
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 6:54 pm
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 6:43 pm
Happy Catholic Jan 1, 1970, 12:00 am
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 6:00 pm
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 4:22 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 20, 2017, 3:00 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 20, 2017, 2:00 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 20, 2017, 3:01 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 20, 2017, 9:15 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 20, 2017, 9:00 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 20, 2017, 11:00 am
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 19, 2017, 11:00 am
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 19, 2017, 5:59 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 19, 2017, 6:24 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 19, 2017, 4:33 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 21, 2017, 3:01 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 21, 2017, 3:00 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 21, 2017, 5:10 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 22, 2017, 4:10 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 21, 2017, 7:51 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 22, 2017, 5:49 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 21, 2017, 8:01 pm
Students for Life of Illinois Sep 18, 2017, 4:00 pm
Reclaiming Our Children Jan 1, 1970, 7:00 am
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 3:12 pm
Live Action Blog Sep 22, 2017, 4:29 pm
Live Action Blog Sep 22, 2017, 4:41 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 4:50 pm
Leaven for the Loaf Sep 22, 2017, 4:54 pm
March For Life Sep 22, 2017, 3:51 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 3:31 pm
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 3:34 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 22, 2017, 5:49 pm
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 2:38 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 2:19 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 3:01 pm
The Ohio Anglican.blog Sep 22, 2017, 2:35 pm
The Ohio Anglican.blog Jan 1, 1970, 12:00 am
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 1:07 pm
open book Jan 1, 1970, 4:00 am
Live Action Blog Sep 22, 2017, 2:07 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 2:07 pm
EmpowerShop Prolife Sep 22, 2017, 1:00 pm
EmpowerShop Prolife Sep 22, 2017, 1:20 pm
EmpowerShop Prolife Sep 22, 2017, 12:57 pm
EmpowerShop Prolife Sep 22, 2017, 12:44 pm
EmpowerShop Prolife Sep 22, 2017, 1:13 pm
EmpowerShop Prolife Sep 22, 2017, 1:08 pm
EmpowerShop Prolife Sep 22, 2017, 1:04 pm
EmpowerShop Prolife Sep 22, 2017, 1:05 pm
EmpowerShop Prolife Sep 22, 2017, 1:12 pm
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 12:57 pm
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 1:26 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 22, 2017, 4:10 pm
The Common Room Sep 22, 2017, 12:34 pm
LifeNews Sep 22, 2017, 12:59 pm
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 11:34 am
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 10:19 am
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 11:20 am
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 11:43 am
BIG C CATHOLICS Sep 22, 2017, 11:45 am
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 9:47 am
Les Femmes - The Truth Sep 22, 2017, 10:00 am
Greater Fitchburg For Life Jan 1, 1970, 12:00 am
Greater Fitchburg For Life Jan 1, 1970, 12:00 am
Greater Fitchburg For Life Sep 22, 2017, 10:20 am
Greater Fitchburg For Life Jan 1, 1970, 12:00 am
Fundamentally Reformed Sep 22, 2017, 2:35 am
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 8:43 am
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 8:18 am
Catholic Church Conservation Sep 22, 2017, 9:15 am
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 4:41 am
Catholic Fire Sep 22, 2017, 5:26 am
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 2:47 am
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 2:16 am
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 1:52 am
Opinion Times Sep 22, 2017, 2:14 am
CNSNews.com Headlines Sep 22, 2017, 3:18 am
Reclaiming Our Children Jan 1, 1970, 7:00 am
Opinion Times Sep 21, 2017, 11:51 pm
Opinion Times Sep 21, 2017, 11:58 pm
EmpowerShop Prolife Sep 22, 2017, 12:07 am
EmpowerShop Prolife Sep 21, 2017, 11:57 pm
DEACON FOR LIFE Sep 22, 2017, 12:15 am
Fletcher's Blog Sep 21, 2017, 10:42 pm
The Aquila Report Sep 21, 2017, 4:03 am
The Aquila Report Sep 20, 2017, 4:01 am
The Aquila Report Sep 21, 2017, 4:01 am
The Aquila Report Sep 21, 2017, 4:04 am
The Aquila Report Sep 21, 2017, 4:01 am
The Aquila Report Sep 20, 2017, 4:08 am
The Aquila Report Sep 21, 2017, 4:03 am
The Aquila Report Sep 21, 2017, 4:04 am
The Aquila Report Sep 21, 2017, 4:08 am
The Aquila Report Sep 21, 2017, 4:02 am
Spero News Dec 31, 1969, 11:00 pm
PM Notes Sep 21, 2017, 9:40 pm
Opinion Times Sep 21, 2017, 9:07 pm
Opinion Times Sep 21, 2017, 9:07 pm
NoisyRoom.net Sep 21, 2017, 9:07 pm
Live Action Blog Sep 21, 2017, 8:26 pm
LifeNews Sep 21, 2017, 8:10 pm
LifeNews Sep 21, 2017, 9:22 pm
LifeNews Sep 21, 2017, 10:05 pm
FRC.org - Web Log Sep 21, 2017, 7:49 pm
Catholic Fire Sep 21, 2017, 8:26 pm
A Lifestyle of Peace Sep 21, 2017, 8:22 pm
Pro-Life Unity Jan 1, 1970, 12:00 am
Opinion Times Sep 21, 2017, 7:37 pm
Opinion Times Sep 21, 2017, 7:37 pm
Opinion Times Sep 21, 2017, 7:37 pm
Opinion Times Sep 21, 2017, 7:37 pm
Opinion Times Sep 21, 2017, 7:37 pm
Operation Rescue Sep 21, 2017, 5:43 pm
LifeNews Sep 21, 2017, 7:50 pm
LifeNews Sep 21, 2017, 7:25 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 21, 2017, 7:51 pm
Christian Newswire: All Releases Sep 21, 2017, 8:01 pm
BIG C CATHOLICS Sep 21, 2017, 6:53 pm
Spero News Dec 31, 1969, 11:00 pm
Spero News Dec 31, 1969, 11:00 pm
LifeNews Sep 21, 2017, 6:48 pm
LifeNews Sep 21, 2017, 6:39 pm
March For Life Sep 21, 2017, 12:54 pm
Live Action Blog Sep 20, 2017, 6:48 pm