Patricia Sandoval was four months pregnant, and she and her boyfriend planned to have the baby. But her friends tried to convince her to abort. She recalls how they confronted her at a party:
They cornered me as soon as we got there: “We think you’re too young to be a mom. Are you sure you want to have this baby?” All of them felt terribly unhappy about my pregnancy and collectively probed me for any misgivings while putting fearful thoughts in my head.
Later, her friends continued pressuring her, and she gave in:
All the joy I felt about my pregnancy vanished. I made the decision to abort my baby …. From that moment on, I shut my thoughts away from the life within me… I conjured up thoughts of relief over not having to get “fat” and forged ahead, making an appointment at an abortion center. As the day of my procedure approached, I thought, “There’s a baby in my stomach, and it’s not going to be there anymore.” Feelings of selfishness crippled me with guilt, but I brushed them aside for “a better future.”
When Sandoval went for her abortion, she asked the abortion worker to show her the ultrasound. The worker refused:
She wouldn’t let me. “No, it’s not something you need to see. There’s nothing really there.”
“Am I too far along?” I asked her nervously. “Is my baby too developed to have this abortion? Is the baby going to be hurt?”
Staring at me blankly, she said, “It’s not a child. It’s a sac.”
I had seen my last ultrasound two months previously, and even then, I was able to see my baby’s head and limbs move, not to mention his or her beating heart, so I knew the nurse was lying to my face. Even so, I wanted to believe her.
The abortion worker lied about the development of Sandoval’s baby. At four months, her child was fully formed, with fingers and toes, and every organ and body part present.
Sandoval was still hesitant when she was led into the abortion room:
[The abortionist] tried to calm me down by saying, “I’ve had one abortion, and my daughter has had two abortions. In fact, I even performed the abortions on my own daughter.” Putting her hand on her heart, she added, “I’m okay. My daughter is okay. Nothing happened to me, nothing happened to her, and nothing is going to happen to you. You’re going to be fine.” … Her words put me at ease. She was a doctor, an expert in her field, so I trusted her.
During the abortion, the abortion workers kept dehumanizing Sandoval’s child:
The nurse and the doctor kept telling me I wasn’t doing anything wrong at all, that it wasn’t a child… It wasn’t a child. It was nothing more than a lifeless mass of tissue… Meanwhile, pictures of my ultrasound flashed through my mind.
In the recovery room, Sandoval was surrounded by sobbing women. Even though the abortion workers did everything they could to dehumanize their babies, the women knew they had destroyed something far more significant than “tissue.”
Sandoval told her boyfriend she had a miscarriage. Her friends, who had played such a major role in her decision to abort, now distanced themselves:
After that, my friends who had been so concerned about me before my abortion slowly faded out of my life, one by one. They never once asked, “How do you feel?” They acted like they didn’t want to know. My well-being and my future were suddenly no longer their concern. And I, being so ashamed, embarrassed, and disturbed over having aborted a four-month old, and fearful of their gossip, never dared to mention the abortion again.
Sandoval went on to get pregnant and abort two more times.
For her second abortion, she went to Planned Parenthood. The abortion “counselors” there promised that the abortion would be quick and easy. They gave no information about the risks of abortion or the development of the baby:
The “counselor” explained the procedure in one sentence and told me that afterward, I would feel some slight cramping and would be ready to go back to work the next day. “Take some aspirin, if you need it.”
She made it sound so easy! I felt grateful.
The facility that aborted her third baby, Common Women’s Health, had candles burning, music playing, and the smell of scented oils drifting through the air. They too made abortion sound simple and easy, and denied the humanity of the preborn child.
Years later, Sandoval would come to deeply regret her abortions.
Source: Patricia Sandoval, Christine Watkins Transfigured: Patricia Sandoval’s Escape from Drugs, Homelessness, and the Backdoors of Planned Parenthood (Sacramento, California: Queen of Peace Media, 2017) 43-45, 46, 49
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