Analysis

Abortion activists prevent pro-life sidewalk counselor from helping woman being coerced into abortion

husband, wife, divorce, forced abortion, abortion

One study found that 74% of post-abortive women were coerced into their abortions by someone else. The sample in that study was drawn from women who regretted their abortions and sought healing at pregnancy centers, so the numbers may not be representative of all post-abortive people. But it’s still significant.

Others have noted the high prevalence of coerced abortions among those who seek help for post-abortion trauma. Clare Bremner, a counselor with the Abortion Recovery Care and Helpline in Scotland, wrote, “In my long experience, typically 75 per cent of the women who summon up the courage and bravery to make a call for help regarding an abortion were pressurised or bullied into having one, in almost all cases by the man involved.”

Pro-lifer witnesses coerced abortion

In his 2020 book, longtime pro-life activist John Cavanaugh–O’Keefe described something he witnessed while sidewalk counseling at Hillcrest abortion facility in Southeast Washington. There were about a dozen pro-abortion activists blocking his way and trying to prevent him from talking to people visiting the abortion facility. Then:

A car pulled into the lot, and a man got out of the driver’s seat. He went around to the passenger side, and talked a bit, then shouted a bit, and then wrenched the door open, grabbed the woman sitting there, and pulled her out. She screamed and cried, but he dragged her toward the door.

Cavanaugh-O’Keefe tried to talk to the couple, but pro-abortion activists prevented it:

I tried to speak up a bit, although I can’t remember what I said. The pro-choice group blocked my way. If either the man or the woman tussling their way to the door noticed anything from the sidewalk, they probably heard just noise.

The man won: he dragged her inside. I don’t know anything more about their story; as far as I know they were in there for a few hours, long enough to complete her planned procedure.

He notes, “[The pro-abortion activists] watched the man drag a woman inside – physically, no metaphor here – and they had nothing to say about it. They took the man’s side against the woman’s choice.”

Women pressured into aborting twins

Tragically, many post-abortive women have spoken about being coerced. One woman had two abortions with the same father. When she became pregnant a third time, she wanted to have her baby, but, “He told me no, it was better to abort. We scheduled an appointment, and I still was trying to convince him to let me keep the baby. He told me it would be better not to have it.”

When she got to the abortion facility, they did an ultrasound and discovered she was pregnant with twins. She again tried pleading with her husband, saying, “I sat down beside him and begged him to let me keep the babies. He convinced me we could not afford them. I went back inside and killed my twins.”

Less than a year later, she was divorced, and her husband was with someone else.

She deeply regrets her abortions, saying, “I have paid the price dearly and even though God has forgiven me I still struggle with a life sentence of guilt.”

READ: Coerced abortion: It’s far more common than you think

Woman loses her fertility to coerced abortion

Another post-abortive woman said:

I didn’t want to give up the life that was inside of me. I didn’t know who to turn to.

The only person I could tell was my boyfriend, and a few friends who I knew had an abortion in the past. They all encouraged me to have an abortion and no matter my view on it, I felt highly pressured to have one.

After the abortion, she was in pain and for weeks afterward had “bad cramping and spotting.” She called the abortion facility, and they told her what she was experiencing was normal.

Because of this, she didn’t seek medical help. But later, at an annual checkup with her gynecologist, the doctor discovered scar tissue in her uterus. The gynecologist told her it was caused by the abortion and that she would probably never be able to have children. She said, “My abortion has caused me so many problems in my life. From depression to eating disorders to guilt and regret. I have a hard time being around babies who would be the same age as my baby had I decided to have it.”

She and her boyfriend broke up, and now she realizes she was “verbally abused and manipulated.”

A coerced abortion’s impact on motherhood

Tatiana Anchundia had two young sons. When she got pregnant, she wanted to have her baby but her husband insisted she abort. She said, “I obeyed, without thinking twice because I was so in love. I felt insecure and I didn’t want him to leave me.”

The aftermath of the abortion had an impact on how she related to her children. “I did not care for my other children, I did not like to hold their hands, I never gave them a hug,” she said. “Now they are older, and I want to hug them, but they are used to their mom not touching them.”

She suffered emotional distress after her abortion and eventually joined the pro-life movement.

Boyfriend coerces abortion, then leaves

Marta was told by her boyfriend Keiran, “There’s no way you’re having a baby, I never want kids.”

She said, “I told him it’s too late, I’m pregnant and couldn’t be happier.” Keiran was “furious” and threatened to leave her. Afraid to lose him, she had the abortion.

“[The day I got the abortion] was the worst day of my life, terminating a much-wanted baby,” she said. “But what could I do when my partner didn’t want a baby?” She suffered after her abortion:

I was in a lot of pain the following days, both physical and emotional, it was a total nightmare, I started having dreams about my lost baby.  I was convinced she was a girl and I was just gutted. Also, I was left with so much guilt, I wish I’d been stronger and convinced Keiran to let me go through with the pregnancy.

Shortly after the abortion, Keiran broke up with her.

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