Pro-abortion activists claim that abortion is all about giving women choices. But many minors are forced or pressured into having abortions. In one study, researchers examined cases where the minor did not tell her parents about the pregnancy, but the parents found out some other way. Among these families, 18% of the parents forced their daughters to have abortions. In 6% of cases, physical violence was involved. 18% may not seem like a high number, but tens of thousands of minors have abortions every year. The numbers add up.
Kelly Lang was in high school when she became pregnant. After the pregnancy test came back positive, she told her mother, who demanded she have an abortion. Kelly pleaded with her mother to keep her baby, but her mother made an appointment for the abortion anyway. She was a few weeks shy of her 18th birthday, and her boyfriend was over 18. Her mother threatened to have him arrested for statutory rape and put in jail if she did not go through with the abortion. Kelly considered him “the love of my life”, and she did not want her boyfriend to go to jail.
Kelly’s mother said she would drive her to the abortion facility. After the abortion, Kelly could continue her relationship with her boyfriend. But she was not allowed to contact him until after the abortion was over.
Over the next few days, my mother spent more time with me than at any other time in my life. Sadly, this was not because she wanted to share my few moments of pregnancy with me. Rather, it stemmed from a fear that if I were to spend time with my boyfriend, we would find a way to not have the abortion.
No amount of tears changed my mother’s mind. She was determined – and that was that.(1)
Kelly pleaded with her mother the whole way to the abortion facility:
The trip to the clinic was filled with pleading and begging. But no amount of pleading touched my mother’s heart. Arriving at the clinic, my mother signed the paperwork handed to her. As we waited for my name to be called, I tried one last time to sway her, pleading with her, “Please, mom! Please don’t do this.”
The abortion workers helped Kelly’s mother force her to go through with the abortion.
The nightmare continued as my name was called and I was led to a small office halfway down a long hallway. The lady behind the desk asked me if I had any questions. As the last word left her mouth, I was on my feet, running down the hallway, throwing open the double waiting room doors – still pleading and begging for mercy. I fell to my knees sobbing. It was then that I felt my arms being pulled upward and I was dragged to a room where my baby was sucked away.
Kelly was literally dragged into the room where her baby was killed. It is illegal for parents to force their minor daughters to have abortions — but the abortion workers had no qualms about helping Kelly’s mother force her.
Kelly suffered enormous guilt and grief for many years:
I lived with the consequences of this nightmare for the next 30 years – constantly waking up to the pain, the void, the anger, the depression, the loneliness, and the self-destructive impulses I experience every day. I was convinced that everything that ever went wrong in my life was a punishment for having aborted my baby.
30 years later, after going to a Rachel’s Vineyard retreat, Kelly finally confronted her mother. But it brought her no healing or closure:
Her comment to me was that she really didn’t remember it. It was one of the most traumatic experiences of my life, and my mom said she didn’t even remember it.
Kelly has never fully healed from the coerced abortion.
JoAnne Crough, a counselor at Meier Clinics office in Pittsburgh, has seen many women like Kelly who were once forced into abortions. Crough says:
This happens more often than you might think. In most cases it’s the teen or woman’s parents who suggest this way of dealing with the pregnancy. They make it clear that an abortion will “solve everything.” … The young woman in this situation is extremely vulnerable to being coerced to make the others in her life happy. She has upset those closest to her with the news of her pregnancy. She feels confusion, shame, and fear. She becomes isolated from other forms of support. Combined, these put tremendous pressure on her to comply.(2)
1. Janet Morana Shockwaves: Abortions Wider Circle of Victims (New Jersey: Catholic Book Publishing Corp., 2017) 119-120
2. Sharon Serratore “Coerced into Unwanted Abortions” The American Feminist (publication of Feminists for Life) Fall/Winter 2016