Women recall being coerced into abortions: ‘I did what my doctor and boyfriend told me to do’

raped, abuse, pregnant, coerced abortion

Even as pro-abortion media bombards readers and viewers with stories from women who claim abortion was the best thing they ever did, the countless stories of women who regret their abortions are often buried — despite entire organizations, such as Silent No More, which give women suffering abortion trauma a voice and venue to share their stories. In addition, entire books have been written on the subject of abortion regret. Below are stories from just one pro-life book featuring women’s accounts of coerced abortions. 

Loophole in the law allows a legal abortion before Roe v. Wade

Maria wanted her baby but was pressured to abort by her boyfriend. She says, “I told him that I didn’t think abortion was right and that it wasn’t what I wanted.”Despite her wishes, he continued to argue:

I got daily pressure from Sam. “When are you going to do something?” he’d ask. “You have to do something soon, or it will be too late.” I remember at that point being terribly afraid that I would lose him because I wasn’t doing what he wanted me to do.2

This was before Roe v. Wade, but Maria was able to have a legal abortion anyway. All she had to do was meet with a psychiatrist:

[The psychiatrist] asked me a list of what seemed like standard questions. If I didn’t answer them “correctly,” he told me what I should have said and asked the question again… He wrote on a piece of paper that I was incompetent to have a baby, and that’s how the illegal abortion became legal.3

An abortionist ignored her wishes 

At the abortion facility, Maria tried to back out: 

I remember telling the [abortionist] that this wasn’t really what I wanted, but he said that this was the best solution to my problem. “What would your mother and father say if they knew?” he asked.

All through my growing up years I’d been taught to respect doctors, that they would always do what was best for me. I remember thinking that he must be right, that this must be the best solution to my problem.

I was mesmerized by these two male authority figures – my boyfriend and my doctor – and I did what they told me to do.4

A traumatic abortion followed by serious complications

Maria had a saline abortion, a type of abortion that is seldom done today because it is so dangerous to the mother and resulted in so many live births. In a saline abortion, a caustic salt solution is injected into the uterus, which burns and poisons the baby. The mother then goes through labor and delivers a dead child.                                                                                                                                                                       

Maria recalls being in a bed surrounded by other women waiting to deliver their dead babies. She heard crying and moaning all around her. It took 12 hours for her to expel her child.

She recalls, “I called the nurse; she put the baby into a steel container and took it away… I knew it was a boy.”5

After the abortion, Maria suffered severe complications. The saline solution caused a massive infection, and her kidneys failed. She was rushed to the hospital and put on dialysis. Maria had wanted to keep her abortion a secret from her parents, but doctors doubted she would survive and suggested she call them. She remembers her father standing by her hospital bed, weeping.

When the dialysis tube was removed, Maria began bleeding internally. Her father called for a priest to administer Last Rites. When the priest heard her confession, the full realization of what she’d done hit Maria. She says, “Suddenly I realized what I had done to myself, to my baby, to my parents, to the baby’s father. It was like dominoes, all the lives that had been affected by what I had done.”6

She was in the hospital for two months.

READ: Coerced abortion: It’s far more common than you think

She later tried to cope by drinking to “numb the pain” and keeping herself “too busy to think.” Sam, now her husband, “kind of went crazy with his heavy drinking.” She believes guilt from the abortion is what led to his alcoholism.

When she and Sam tried to start a family, she discovered she couldn’t conceive. The infection had left her infertile.

Maria says, “The guilt that I felt, guilt that I killed my only child, was extreme.”7

Coercion from an abusive boyfriend

Lynette was a junior in high school when she became pregnant. She says, “It was wonderful until I told Tom.” 7

Her boyfriend Tom demanded she get an abortion. Lynette protested:

At first, I was adamant. I told him that God had given me this child, put it inside my body, and I couldn’t do that to it. That was the first time he beat me up. He told me, “You will either go and have this done, or I will beat it out of you. I’m not raising this child.”8

Even though Tom was abusive, Lynette was emotionally dependent on him. She says:

This boy was my life; I was totally committed to him… I was such a romantic. I had bought it all, hook, line, and sinker… It was going to be melodramatic and painful, but wonderful so long as we had each other. I trusted in that.9

She gave in, had the abortion, and married Tom, who continued to abuse her. Consumed with guilt, she felt she didn’t deserve a better relationship. Eventually, their marriage ended.

She married another man, and they wanted children. But she suffered an ectopic pregnancy. Doctors said the abortion could be the cause. She was unable to conceive, and her second marriage fell apart. Lynette suffered post-abortion trauma for many years. Eventually, she found healing.

Others have noted the threat some men pose to their pregnant partners. 

An abortion facility security guard speaks out

When employees at one abortion facility tried to pass a buffer zone law to keep pro-lifers away, the security guard who worked for them, Richard Seron, testified – in favor of the pro-lifers.

He said, “I stood toe-to-toe with Operation Rescue. I never found their behavior objectionable in any way.”10

According to reporter Brian MacQuarrie:

[T]he former guard said, the group he considered most likely to become aggressive were the men who accompanied women to the clinic. During his time as a Preterm [abortion facility] guard, Seron said, two young men had to be disarmed of a club and a sharp “impaling” object as they escorted women into the clinics.11

It wasn’t the pro-lifers who were a threat to women coming in for abortions, Seron said – it was their partners.


  1. Kathleen Winkler When the Crying Stops: Abortion, the Pain and the Healing (Milwaukee, Wisconsin: Northwestern Publishing House, 1992) 118
  2. Ibid. 
  3. Ibid., 118– 119
  4. Ibid., 120
  5. Ibid.
  6. Ibid., 122
  7. Ibid., 165
  8. Ibid., 165-166
  9. Brian MacQuarrie “Guard, clinic at odds at abortion hearing” Boston Globe, Apr 16, 1999
  10. Ibid.

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