In a book that reaches out to people hurt by abortion, a woman named Alex told her story of how she was coerced into an abortion that left her grief-stricken.
Alex was engaged to a man named Ken when she got pregnant. The pregnancy was unplanned, but she wanted to keep the baby because she was against abortion. Because they were engaged, she thought Ken would accept the pregnancy. However, he immediately suggested abortion:
[I] was definitely having the baby because I didn’t believe in abortion. I was a little nervous when I told Ken. I knew this wasn’t his plan either. However, I didn’t expect him to coldly suggest I abort the baby. After all, we were engaged – we were planning to get married. He also knew I was against abortion.
Alex refused, but Ken kept up the pressure:
Ken calmly explained that having a baby right now didn’t fit in our plans… When I protested, he simply repeated the same argument. His words stung… I thought he’d change his mind, so I didn’t do anything at first. But over the next few days, he continued to explain to me why we couldn’t have this baby. In turn, I gently remind him that we were already planning on getting married and that I really couldn’t have an abortion.
Eventually, Ken became harsh and insistent:
His gentle persistence eventually became more forceful. He tried to convince me that our relationship wouldn’t last if I didn’t have the abortion. The more I cried and pleaded, the harder and more demanding he became.
Devoted to her fiancé, Alex didn’t want to lose him. She knew he would leave her if she insisted on having the baby, and she was scared of having to raise a child alone without the man she thought she loved. She gave in and had the abortion even though she “knew it would end the life of our child.” Her fear of losing Ken was too strong and she went through with an abortion she didn’t truly want.
Alex convinced herself that she and Ken would be fine after the abortion, and she would be able to cope. “I thought that if I got it over with quickly – that if I had the abortion early enough in the pregnancy – that I’d be able to cope with it,” she said. “I thought I’d be okay – we’d be okay.”
Instead, she was overwhelmed with grief and regret and said, “I was wrong. I immediately regretted the abortion. I felt the loss of our child from the core of my being. I grieved over my child – our child.”
To make her situation even more painful, the relationship deteriorated as Ken was intolerant of her grief and became cruel towards her:
Ken was frustrated that I cried so often. His frustration quickly turned to anger. I would cry, and he would yell. Whenever I tried to tell him how I was feeling, he’d storm out. The distance between us kept growing until we finally broke up two months later. The loss was unbearable. In fact, the losses were unbearable.
In the end, like many women who give in to a boyfriend’s demands to abort, she lost both her fiancé and her child. She was forced to live with deep regret and grief for many years, and the relationship was lost even though she gave in to coercion.
Michaelene Fredenburg Changed: Making Sense of Your Own or a Loved One’s Abortion Experience (San Diego, California: Perspectives, 2008) 99 – 102
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