A pro-choice organization has launched a campaign that attempts to “normalize” abortion. When looking at their abortion testimonies, however, the website ignores much of the true normal.
My Abortion, My Life is a new, Cleveland-based ad campaign wanting people to speak out about their abortions. In their own words:
“My Abortion, My Life is a public awareness campaign to end the silence and shame surrounding abortion. Our goal is to promote a new dialogue, one that shifts the conversation from the rhetorical to the experiential, from the language of politics to the language of real women and men. Only through sharing our truths about abortion can we truly support women’s full range of reproductive options.”
Though I fully disagree with the ideology fueling this campaign (the campaign is headed by a 2nd-trimester abortion clinic), we have one thing in common: a desire to share the stories of those affected by abortion. When one looks at the stories on My Abortion, My Life’s website, however, they only show a small portion of the picture.
This week I was able to talk with a high school student who had an abortion at age 16. She was struggling with regret during the day and haunted by abortion-related nightmares at night. Though this girl is now seeking counseling to help cope with her past, her symptoms were nothing unique. In fact, the Elliot Institute reports that women who abort have a 65% higher risk of clinical depression and are 6 to 7 times more likely to commit suicide than delivering women.
Despite these troubling statistics, story after story on My Abortion, My Life highlights lives with “No regrets!”, but no stories are shared by the women who regret their abortions. If My Abortion, My Life really wishes to share the true stories of abortion, why are they ignoring the large percentage of women who live in pain at the loss of their child?
My Abortion, My Life isn’t the only group ignoring the deep pain that can be caused by abortion. Though abortion-giant Planned Parenthood admits “some” women feel regret for a little while, their abortion information webpage states:
“Ultimately, most women feel relief after an abortion.”
Why are organizations that claim to support women brushing aside the devastating impacts of abortion? “Relief” doesn’t usually result in depression — or, for that matter, spending one’s day reading stories of lives liberated by abortion.
With that said, women who regret their abortions aren’t the only people overlooked by My Abortion, My Life. Even if every abortion resulted in these ideal, regret-free situations, a key group would not have been covered. If one truly wishes to move “ from the rhetorical to the experiential, from the language of politics to the language of real women and men,” the stories of those people most directly affected by abortion must also be told: the aborted.
Unfortunately, there can never be a My [Mom’s] Abortion [Ended] My Life complementary website, voicing the stories of the thousands whose lives are literally destroyed by abortion. The experience that makes a person most eligible to speak about the impact of abortion is the very experience that snuffs out that person’s ability to ever discuss it. Aborted children are never given a chance to speak about how their lives are affected by abortion.
The fact of the matter is, abortion is already far too normal. Still, My Abortion, My Life, by ignoring two major groups — women who regret their abortion, and the aborted — masquerades a rather abnormal result as though it were the norm.
If you’d like to hear the whole story about those affected by abortion, here are some helpful links: