Today’s Post contains this piece about a woman who had 15 abortions and wrote a memoir about it. I had already heard of this through thoughtful readers who sent me the link about her soon-to-be-released book, Impossible Motherhood: Testimony of an Abortion Addict. But I didn’t post about it because it’s been a busy week; that said I was also slightly reticent to read about this strange and deviant case.
Indeed, it’s not easy to read about. But here are the interesting points to me:
Firstly, she has tried to kill herself several times. Secondly, she writes that motherhood made her feel accountable for her actions.
The first part is a sad, sad note on what abortion does to a high percentage of women, who can’t cope, can’t escape and try to kill themselves as a result or spend many years imagining they should.
The second part about motherhood making her take note of her actions is interesting insofar as I have heard about this from several post-abortive women: When the do have a child or get pregnant and that child is wanted, even if they did not feel bad about the prior abortion (or did not realize they felt bad) becoming a mother brings all sorts of problems with the thing to the surface.
This speaks to the long term outcomes of abortion. The highest percentage of abortions occurs before the age of 30. Many women do see it as a solution in the short term and feel a sense of relief. The reality is that short-term “solution” comes back to visit them later in life.
Yesterday I heard a very wonderful woman speak at the de Veber conference. Her name was Teresa Harnett, and wow, I just found her captivating and inspiring for her strong compassionate presence, her words, her expertise in counselling women considering abortion. She’s been doing it for over 20 years at Birthright Pregnancy Services in Hamilton.
She spoke of her work as making a bridge between that catastrophic moment for a woman when she realizes she is pregnant and considers it truly to be the end of her own life and later on, to a future she can’t yet see. She can’t see it in her fear and concern. But Teresa spoke of making this bridge–to the point where she could see that her life will not end, that there is support, that there are true and meaningful choices.
All this rambling post to say I’m distressed when I read about someone having 15 abortions–and I’m sorry it takes a trigger like childbirth for many women to realize the fullness of their actions. But then there are women like Teresa, many, many women like her, doing great work as a bridge between a terrible present and a more hopeful future. And then I feel encouraged.
(More on the de Veber conference later. It was a really inspiring day.)by