Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Obvious Child: A Poignant Romantic Comedy about Abortion?

Friday, June 6th, 2014

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Obvious Child opens in theaters on Friday June 6, 2014.  The reviews generally describe this film as a poignant comedy/romance that presents a refreshingly honest portrayal of a young couple facing an unplanned pregnancy.

Writer-Director Gillian Robespierre shares:

 “We weren’t sure how an abortion comedy would work out… [But] I think, what Jenny did was really capture that feeling of feeling lost and learning how to grow from that experience.”

Our lead heroine in this saga is 28 year old aspiring comedian Donna Stern (played by Jenny Slate.)  She draws upon the sexual activities with her boyfriend to fuel the pornographic standup comedy featured in the movie’s opening scene.  But Donna’s boyfriend doesn’t appreciate this exploitation of their sexual relationship to fuel her budding comedic genius.  So to exact revenge he sleeps with Jenny’s girlfriend as if to say… “Now stick that in your next stand up act!”

Actually that’s just what she does.  But her act bombs that night because Donna is hurt and depressed that this guy slept with her girlfriend and this makes for bad comedy.  See, it’s ok to take the private/intimate experience of sex with your partner and graphically share it with your audience to make them laugh…but it’s not ok for that guy to sleep with your friend.

Donna deals with her boyfriend-betrayal by going out with a friend and getting plastered.  She meets a nice young man, Max (played by Jake Lacy.) They consume even more alcohol and in one particularly poignant scene both share in public urination…and Max passes gas while relieving his booze-bloated bladder.  (Jenny later affectionately refers to Max as her “Pee-Farter.”)  Filled with passion by this romantic bonding experience they are soon dancing in their underwear and having sex.

Later as Donna examines her tender breast in the mirror she recognizes that her body is preparing for a baby…and decides abortion is the only solution to her dilemma.   Like a frightened child after a nightmare, she snuggles into the warm, safe womb of her mother’s bed, and shares her anxiety about the unplanned pregnancy and the decision to abort the child.

Donna’s mother (played by Polly Draper) has not been supportive of her daughter’s comedy career but is very supportive of the decision to abort.  Donna’s mom shares that she too had an abortion in her youth.

Sadly this scenario is not uncommon.  When a mother never properly grieves a previous abortion loss, she is likely to suffer the common post abortion symptoms after the procedure in her life and relationships.  Growing up with a wounded after-abortion mom would likely influence Donna’s sexually-charged nihilistic standup comedy.   As with many mother/daughter abortion decisions,  this Mom projected onto Donna’s crisis the same vulnerabilities and unresolved grief and loss from her own abortion…leading her to see termination as the only solution.  Tragically the trauma after the abortion is transmitted like a deadly virus to her daughter.

Donna and her sexual partner Max are confused and immature characters.   Without the guidance of an adult in their life who could offer them an alternative to sexual anarchy and abortion, they lack any moral or spiritual compass to help them negotiate their adult lives and find a non-violent solution to their unplanned pregnancy.

Donna in her standup act projects an image of the brave transparent comic heroine whose comedy is unrestrained by any standards of decency.   But her sexually explicit comedy reveals a lack of respect for the sacred nature of this most intimate human experience endowed by our Creator with the awesome power to create human life.  The graphic sexual comedy that opens the movie leads inexorably to the urination scene and the desecration of the sexual act (and finally their unborn child.)

Director Gillian Robespierre would like us to believe that this story has a happy ending and to breathe a sigh of relief that thankfully abortion while unpleasant is really no big deal…just part of Donna’s crazy comedic coming of age as she learns and “grows from the experience.” 

This is a dangerous deception for women and men who will face an unplanned pregnancy or have experienced an abortion loss.

Consider the scene where Donna discovers her breasts are changing to prepare for the unborn child.  By disrupting the natural process of breast maturation after abortion Donna is significantly increasing her risk of breast cancer.   Is this what director Robespierre had in mind when he had the inspiration to create this “abortion comedy?”

Here is the more likely progression in the personal and professional life of comedian Donna Stern.  Read these stories of women and men who present a more honest and accurate description of the experience of abortion loss and recovery.

There is a 50% chance that without a healing program for her abortion loss Donna will go on to to have multiple abortions.  With each abortion the light of grace in her heart and soul will fade as the unhealed pain and grief of love/child lost leads to increased alcohol abuse and relational dysfunction…as the pain bleeds  into her sexually explicit nihilistic comedy.

The night before Donna’s scheduled abortion, Max comes to see her standup act:

   “You killed it” [Max] compliments Donna after her rousing routine.

Donna’s response…

 “Isn’t that what I’m doing tomorrow?”  

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[If you are a man or woman who has suffered abortion loss do not give into despair, cynicism or fear.  There is forgiveness, healing and peace available through an abortion recovery program.]

 

 

 

 

 

 

Abortion for Fetal Anomaly: The Compassionate Choice for Mother and Baby?

Thursday, May 29th, 2014

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Registered Nurse Lynn Smith presents an excellent overview on some key issues to consider when couples are counseled to abort their unborn child with a fetal anomaly:

In considering the H 4223, the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, people need to know that abortion is not a life saving, pain sparing medical procedure in the case of fetal anomaly.

At a February conference, OB-GYN doctor, Byron Calhoun, presented a strong case for perinatal hospice instead of termination of pregnancy for fetal anomaly.  Not only is perinatal hospice safer for a woman and her family emotionally, but it is safer physically, for the mother.

There are 6-10,000 lethal fetal anomalies in the U.S. every year.  Traditional treatment for  lethal anomalies is termination of pregnancy, and the reasons for such treatment are not necessarily based on sound medical rationale, but on emotion:  obstetric providers’ well intentioned desire to spare the mother and the family a distressing experience, their need to “do something,” and their discomfort with bereaved patients.  On the physiological level, a prudent doctor is motivated to avoid maternal complications of pregnancy and childbirth, and fear of increased maternal mortality.

The doctors’ desire to be in control, and prevent suffering, is understandable, however research reveals that termination does not necessarily prevent maternal complications, mortality, or suffering but, in fact, pregnancy termination increases the risk of physical harm and prolongs suffering.  Grief after termination of a pregnancy is just as intense as after a spontaneous pregnancy loss, however, grief after termination for anomalies demonstrates prolonged consequences.  A study in the Netherlands of women with termination for anomalies reviewed psychological outcomes at monthly intervals. At 4 months 46% of women had pathological levels of post-traumatic stress symptoms.  At 16 months, 21% still had symptoms.  Grief after termination is intense and persistent, as shown in another Netherlands study.  Evaluated 2-7 years post termination, 2.6% had pathological grief and 17% had post traumatic stress.

Another study, on the other hand, shows grief with first trimester spontaneous pregnancy loss is equal to that of live birth.  In the first six months of the study, there was increased depression, anxiety and somatization with the loss group, but after one year there was no difference with the live birth group.

Dr. Calhoun notes that in comparing a 1994 study to the 1998 CDC report, maternal mortality for induced abortion at 16-20 weeks is about the same as for non termination.  However, the CDC itself acknowledges within its own reports that induced abortion morbidity and mortality are underreported.  Therefore, it can be deduced that carrying a pregnancy to term, is the safer choice.

A well designed perinatal hospice program provides the kinder alternative of assisting the mother to carry her baby to term.  Kinder to the mother, in that she was not a proactive agent in the demise of her child, and kinder to the child, allowing it to live comfortably what time it has within the womb.  A 2002 analysis found that 20% of patients will continue the pregnancy no matter what the diagnosis.  Two studies show that 75-85% of patients choose perinatal hospice when presented with the idea.  The patients were all positive about hospice care and the opportunity to spend time with their infants, which, after delivery, lived from a few minutes to a few days.

Someone once said that you do not eliminate suffering by eliminating those who suffer.  Abortion is not healthcare.  Anyone who has been involved in an abortion decision, for whatever reason, if they are truly honest with their self, knows that abortion is cruel, ugly, and a desperate choice.

In so many circumstances in our society, from abortion to euthanasia, to assisted suicide, we need to recognize that killing is not compassion.   The word “compassion” comes from the words that mean “together” and “to suffer.”  Compassion is coming alongside those who suffer and living with them through their suffering.  To suggest that death is the solution for life’s problems is to abandon them to despair.  Is there a soul to our society?  How do we measure our humanity?  The answer is by the degree to which we care for those humans who are suffering:  the weak and vulnerable, the unwanted and imperfect, the dying.

Yours truly,

Lynn Smith, R.N.

 

 

Collateral Damage: An Attorney Traumatized by Abortion Case

Thursday, May 22nd, 2014

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Sheila Harper founder/director at Saveone has an important blog on her meeting with an attorney  intimately involved in an abortion case in his distant past.  This powerful account reveals the true nature of abortion loss as a traumatic experience with powerful feelings many years after the event…not just for the father trying to prevent the abortion but for others like this attorney intimately involved in the events leading up to the unborn child’s death.  Here’s an excerpt from Sheila’s article:

I recently had the privilege of speaking at the Wisconsin Right to Life annual conference…After my talk that evening I had many come over to my booth and ask me to sign their newly bought books. There was one man in particular who I want to tell you about. He didn’t buy a book, didn’t ask me to sign anything, didn’t tell me I did a good job, nothing. He simply wanted to tell me a story. His tale goes like this…

In 1975 he was a really good attorney by his own admission. He rarely lost any case he defended. One day a man called the attorney’s office and said his wife had left him. He didn’t want a divorce and especially not now because his wife had just told him she was pregnant…and getting an abortion.  Read the rest here.

[Turning the Hearts of Fathers is a special initiative of the Silent No More Awareness Campaign this coming June to raise awareness of how abortion can deeply wound men and the good news of healing in Christ.]

Boxer Floyd Mayweather Powerless to Defend the Life of His Unborn Twins

Thursday, May 1st, 2014

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TraumaA traumatic event is an experience that causes physical, emotional, psychological distress, or harm. It is an event (such as rape, sudden accidental death, natural disaster etc.) that is perceived and experienced as a threat to one’s safety or to the stability of one’s world.

How horribly ironic that one of the greatest Professional Boxers in the world is powerless after Roe V Wade to defend the life of his unborn children.  Read the tragic experience of Boxer Floyd Mayweather and his former fiance, Shantel Christine Jackson…and the traumatic anger, pain and relationship implosion of a father who lost his twin children to abortion.

When couples are engaged to be married and learn of an unplanned pregnancy, there can be a great temptation to abort the child.   Parents can face economic fears, professional or educational commitments, embarrassment to face the truth with family and future in-laws…or something as tragic as not wanting an unplanned pregnancy to interfere with  the perfect wedding.

Couples sadly are ill prepared for the after effects of abortion.  It attacks the very heart of marital intimacy.  Communication and trust are often shattered by the painful, confusing and conflicted feelings which follow the procedure.  Couples may surge ahead and suppress these feelings in the busy preparations for marriage…but they will catch up with them in time.  We have learned from so many women and men after abortion that this procedure was a key  factor in their marital dysfunction and divorce.

For other couples, the relational destruction is immediate.  This is especially toxic when one of the partners, like Floyd Mayweather is given no say in the decision to end the life of their unborn children. 

Please join me in prayer that Shantel Christine repent of her actions and turn to the Lord for healing and for Floyd Mayweather, that he be open to attending an abortion recovery program so this traumatic loss does not lead to further pain and suffering in his life.

 

The Denial of Peter: A Message of Hope for Those Involved in the Abortion of an Unborn Child

Monday, April 14th, 2014

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“Surely you are one of them; for you too are a Galilean.” Peter began to curse and to swear, “I do not know this man about whom you are talking.” And immediately a cock crowed a second time. Then Peter remembered the word that Jesus had said to him, “Before the cock crows twice you will deny me three times.   

Peter broke down…and wept.

That prior evening as the Apostles gathered for what would be their final Passover meal together, Peter felt strong, secure and confident gathered with Jesus and the other apostles.  Peter, with all sincerity offered to give his life for Jesus.

But just a few short hours later… all hell was breaking loose.

Peter must have been shaken that Jesus did not resist arrest, and now his once powerful Master suffered abuse as he was spit on and mocked by the Temple guards.  Peter was later alone and separated from his fellow apostles.  His beloved leader was no longer preaching, performing spectacular miracles like raising Lazarus from the dead…but facing the horror of Roman crucifixion.  Peter was traumatized by these events and feared for his life.  In that fear and isolation he denied the one he pledged to defend and protect.

It is a sign of the validity of the Gospel accounts that any political movement or religion would have one of its key foundational leaders presented in such an unflattering light.   Peter as leader of the Christian Church must have approved of such a depiction of his betrayal.  No doubt it was the fruit of his tearful repentance, humility and later his post-resurrection restoration by Jesus as leader of the early Christian Church.  (John 21, 15-19)

What a consolation to us in our moments of fear and weakness when in various ways, we abort God’s will for our lives.  I think of those that are involved in abortion decisions.  We know that some of these men and women prior to the abortion would consider themselves to be pro life, or at least were formed with these values in their families.  However in the fear, anger and uncertainty of an unplanned and life changing pregnancy, like Peter they can give in to those fears and deny the truth.  They deny their unborn son/daughter who bears the imprint of the Creator.

This denial also leads to bitter tears and much heartache.

Liberating Repentance  

Pope Benedict XVI wrote of the example of Peter and his words have a special significance for men who have participated in any way in an abortion decision:

  • The school of faith is not a triumphal march but a journey marked daily by suffering and love, trials and faithfulness. Peter, who promised absolute fidelity, knew the bitterness and humiliation of denial: the arrogant man learns the costly lesson of humility. Peter, too, must learn that he is weak and in need of forgiveness. Once his attitude changes and he understands the truth … he weeps in …liberating repentance… he is finally ready for his mission.     - Benedict XVI

This is the Good News for all who have participated in the death of an unborn child…but in a special way this speaks to fathers.  Like many men, Peter wanted to be strong and do the right thing, but in a time of fear and weakness he failed.  Peter is chastened and humbled by his fall and after repentance and restoration now understands that he cannot rely on his own strength, but in the power of Jesus.

It is challenging for men to put aside their pride and admit they failed to protect their unborn child from death.  But the Lord waits for them with mercy and forgiveness.  Jesus will not condemn them for their sin, but rather give them the grace of grieving their loss in liberating repentance.

In the healing of this loss men will in time discover another gift…their unique vocation in the Body of Christ.

What a great blessing it will be for our families, Churches and nation when the millions of men involved in abortion decisions turn to Christ for healing and restoration.  What a powerful army will be unleashed to share the light of the Gospel, empowering men in their mission to defend the sanctity of life in all its stages…and to protect the dignity of women, who are truly beloved daughters of their heavenly Father.

 [Stay tuned for a special announcement coming soon on a new initiative from the Silent No More Awareness Campaign calling men to repentance and healing of their abortion loss.] 

“Pro-Voice” Group Exhale: Counterfeit Healing After Abortion

Monday, April 7th, 2014

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The self-described “pro-voice” group Exhale is again celebrating April as Abortion Wellbeing Month.  Exhale describes itself as the “premiere organization addressing the emotional health and wellbeing of women and men after abortion.”

 If they truly believe this grandiose self description…the exhale folks are either seriously misinformed or seriously delusional…maybe it’s both.

Read here why groups like Exhale (however well intentioned) can never touch the deepest pain and loss of those who suffer abortion loss.

Cosmo Publishes Compelling Positive Article on Adoption

Friday, March 21st, 2014

Cosmo Adoption

Cosmopolitan Magazine published a very honest and compelling personal account of a young woman’s decision to make an adoption plan for her baby.  This is from the same author who wrote a piece in Cosmo about Abortion and Relationships which I blogged a response to in February 2014. 

Let’s get the word out and support a prominent women’s magazine like Cosmo offering such a powerful life-affirming and adoption-affirming article.      Here’s a link to the Cosmo article.  

 

Our Sunday Visitor : Prison Program Helps Men Cope with Past Abortions

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit clearly wants to get the Word out on the excellent prison ministry for men with abortion loss in the Diocese of Palm Beach Florida.

Another article this time in Our Sunday Visitor.           Praise God!

Proclaiming Liberty to the Captives: Abortion Loss Widespread in Prison Population

Thursday, March 6th, 2014

Release Prisoners

Catholic News Agency Published an article on my visit to a maximum security prison in Florida and my meeting with inmates who experienced abortion loss and found healing in Christ through the Rachel’s Vineyard program of the Diocese of Palm Beach Florida.

Read the article at CNA

 

 

 

Crime and Punishment…and Redemption: A Prisoner Shares the Connection between Abortion and Violent Crime

Wednesday, February 26th, 2014

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Catholic News Agency Publishes Prisoner’s Story of how his Abortion led to violent crime and incarceration.