Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
A controversial topic
Abortion is a political and controversial topic. The two camps, pro-choice and pro-life, recycle their positions via the medium of slogans: on the one hand, women have a right to choose and, on the other, women are killing their babies… Neither of these extreme positions touches the reality of the situation for many. In a society in which abortion is readily available and presented as the rational, indeed compassionate choice in difficult circumstances, and in which it has been virtually stripped of all its moral and ethical content, women will choose it for all sorts of reasons, many of them hidden and unconscious.
Abortion as lack of medical care
Because of the age we live in, abortion will be suggested to women with an unplanned pregnancy and she will probably think of it herself. She will not be told of the widespread (and now well-documented, if not widely publicised) negative consequences. Abortion is usually presented to her as a simple and harmless medical procedure. The medical profession has been convinced that it has to stand apart from the issue and refuse to counsel for life or dissuade a woman from abortion on health grounds – ie that having an abortion will have a negative impact on her mental, emotional and physical health.
All too often, women are hurried and pressured into something that they are not given the chance to explore properly. In the decades since the legalisation of abortion, we have seen the same sorry spectacle of women deciding to have abortions because they feel it is not the right time to have a child, for whatever reason, only to go through a devastation they were not warned about. Complex unconscious reasons related to childhood neglect, mistreatment and abuse will prime a woman to choose abortion if she is abandoned by those around her – even if she does not believe it to be right. Abortion will only intensify her problems.
The lack of information and true counselling given to women at the time of an abortion is nothing short of shocking. Women so often are not in a position to make a truly informed choice and the option of keeping the baby is never promoted in the way that abortion is. Afterwards, they are left to their own devices to deal with the many complex sequelae that can arise. Speaking of their pain and grief, they often meet with incomprehension or even ridicule.
Potential damage of abortion
Abortion organisations or providers regularly state that the majority of women experience few if any after-effects and reports of negative consequences are presented as pro-life propaganda. This is simply untrue. One has only to go onto the after-abortion support forums to witness the sometimes catastrophic outfall of abortion. Those women who do push through the shame they feel to speak out about the emotional, mental, physical and spiritual damage in public usually encounter angry denial of or indifference to their pain. No-one really wants to know. It was, after all, their choice…
Talking about a baby in the context of abortion has become the great taboo and gets one branded a pro-life fanatic. Yet we assert that a baby is exactly what a pregnancy represents to a woman’s heart, mind and body and that is why there is so much suffering afterwards. Western societies have moved far from the situation of the 1960s and ’70s when abortion was first legalised and the ending of a pregnancy seen as a very weighty matter. Today, abortion has become so trivialised that it seems almost as inconsequential as having a haircut. At the same time, we are involved in a curious double-speak in which a “wanted” pregnancy involves a baby but an “unwanted” one a foetus or “the products of conception”.
We seek, against the tide, to say that life is sacred and to give support and encouragement to those women who want to keep their baby but who feel overwhelmed by circumstances. But, some will cry, that means you are interfering with the woman’s right to choose! Well, we see that phrase as no more than an empty slogan behind which lies an ocean of suffering. There are women who state that they freely choose abortion, suffer few if any after effects and who believe that abortion should be their legal right. We do not seek to address or represent them but rather the group of women who are, in a sense, their victims.
Lack of choice
Most people not directly affected by abortion assume that women choose it freely and that it is a private matter for her alone; this website is an attempt to explain why that is not true. Its decriminalisation may have “liberated” some women but it has removed a vital protection for others. Those with vested interests, of course, do not care about the lack of true choice involved in some women’s abortion decisions. Abortion providers in the UK may have “charitable” status but they are still an extremely profitable business.
At present the dice are so loaded in favour of abortion that anyone who points out the pitfalls and argues in favour of keeping a child is merely redressing the balance a little. We do not condemn or judge women for abortions; we see all the societal and personal reasons that make women choose abortion so blindly, often with a sense that there is no other choice. If people truly believe in informed consent, they must support the provision of full information before what is an irrevocable decision.
To anyone who says that women who feel as we do are a tiny handful (though we do not believe that to be true), we say that even a tiny handful of unbearable suffering is too much. As Ralph Waldo Emerson said, facing fear means the death of fear. What the pregnant woman does not and cannot know, for no-one tells her, is that she may need far more courage to face the reality of the abortion aftermath than she would have had to have a child in difficult circumstances.
If we do not start to understand the real causes of abortion, we will go on helplessly re-enacting that tragedy, generation after generation. We wish to help give people the keys of understanding that will help prevent that.
* THAT abortion has hidden and deep-rooted causes and can result in profound wounding to a woman’s psyche, complex grief and damaged relationships.
* THAT the truth about abortion is largely hidden and taboo meaning that, generation after generation, women come to it unprepared and uninformed.
* THAT some women are coerced and pressured into abortions they do not want or truly choose and that screening processes and counselling are wholly inadequate.
* THAT doctors are guilty of abandoning their duty of care in performing abortions, particularly without true counselling.
* THAT children are a gift to be welcomed and nurtured.