Too often, abortion is brushed off as a simple procedure. Tons of women have them. The preborn baby isn’t a human being, but a clump of cells. Post-abortion syndrome is a myth.
However, for many women, abortion isn’t just something simple, painless, and guilt-free.
An anonymous student at Harvard shared her story, which is heartbreaking. As a freshman, she began dating another student. She was happy, getting good grades, and had an active social life. She says she lost her virginity to her boyfriend, who she is still in love with. But then he broke up with her, leaving her devastated. He began dating another girl, and then she discovered that she was four months pregnant.
She knew already that her now ex-boyfriend had broken up with another girl when she was pregnant with his child. No one—not her friends or her professors— noticed that she was pregnant. She didn’t know where to find help or resources. Scared and alone, she made the appointment to have an abortion.
I headed to the clinic a week later with just a book, a water bottle, my Harvard ID, and a locket containing a picture of my ex-boyfriend and me. The procedure didn’t take long. It wasn’t even that physically painful. But when it was over, I screamed. I couldn’t stop screaming. As I write these words, it has been over a month since the abortion—and on the inside that screaming hasn’t stopped.
This isn’t Mean Girls—I’m not going to tell you, “Don’t have sex. You will get pregnant, and you will die.” But what I will say is that, yes, there are nights when I wish I could die, when I look in the mirror and hate myself with every fiber of my being. There are nights where I stay up holding the locket, the one piece I have of both my ex-boyfriend and my child, and just cry hysterically. There are nights where I try so hard to convince myself that life is worthwhile by talking myself to sleep with thoughts of stargazing and dancing and laughter, but no matter what I think about I can’t get rid of an all-encompassing sense of pain.
And part of what makes it so hard is there is no one to help me deal with that pain. I wish that I had support. I wish that someone would tell me I’m not a horrible person for making the choice that I did, or say that they sympathize with my agony. But I can’t tell anyone, even my family, about my abortion or my child. I did end up telling my ex-boyfriend. I wanted him to realize that we’d never actually been broken. I sobbed into his chest and confessed everything. I told him about my guilt and my pain. He still didn’t take me back. He told me to tell him if anything was seriously wrong, but he didn’t support me when I needed him and reached out for help. Maybe now I’m just too messed up for him, or anyone else, to deal with.
… I’ve tried to cope with my situation by distracting myself with other boys; my ex uses his current girlfriend to pretend that everything is normal. Sometimes reality is too hard to deal with, and finding any escape seems like the only plausible option.
Inside, she says, she’s still screaming.
A common refrain from post-abortive women is how very little care there is after the abortion. They go to the abortion mill, where their request for an abortion is rubber-stamped, and after staffers allow them to stay in the clinic for an hour or two to recover, they’re sent on their way. No follow-up appointment is scheduled. They don’t schedule any counseling to ensure that the woman is coping well.
Once the abortion facility obtains its blood money, it couldn’t care less about the women that they purport to care so much about. Does anyone at the facility where this girl had her abortion bother to check in with her, knowing that her response to the abortion was to scream in agony and anguish?
Tragically, this student is not alone. Abortion can have a high cost for mothers, and what they’re risking is swept under the rug. In addition to the physical risks, such as an increased likelihood of developing multiple cancers and higher incidences of premature birth, women who have abortions are at great risk for mental health disorders. They are overwhelmingly likely to suffer anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol abuse, and to have suicidal tendencies.
This Harvard student, a happy girl who had everything going for her, is a sad example of how abortion hurts women.
Pro-lifers frequently speak about how abortion takes the life of a preborn child, and rightly so. But it is important that women realize that abortion is not just dangerous to the millions of preborn children killed — it is also dangerous to mothers. No matter how often pro-abortion extremists try to package it as “health care,” it is not.
Abortion hurts women. It does not help them.