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My 16 years of guilt

My heart reached out to Margaret Hayes with compassion as she shared her abortion experience and thanks for her courage which has enabled me to write this letter.

Two years ago, I viewed the Society for the Protection of the Unborn Child with mixed feelings. I had heard that it was an aggressive movement that used propaganda statements.

I was very vulnerable in this area and so decided to challenge them for myself.

Unexpectedly, I consistently experienced people who are wholesome. Non vindictive and extremely compassionate.

They do care about lives -- all lives -- and are very sensitive to the woman themselves that have the abortions experiences.

Yes, of course, the central aim is the unborn child. The youngest member of our human family, the very one that our pro-abortionist seem to feel they are doing a service to, by not allowing their lives to exist.

Yet the more I understood the life of the unborn child form the wonder of conception onwards and what its death by abortion entails, the more I hear form the women and men whose lives have been devastated by abortion experiences: the more I see, hear and think for myself, the more I become convinced of the evil that abortion actually is.

I do not condemn a woman who aborts her child for whatever reasons, but I do accuse the perpetrators of this evil, and I do accuse our "kill mentality" society which has not advanced very far in loving its imperfect and unwanted elements.

It is a biological fact that women are vulnerable throughout all stages of their pregnancies and it is shameful that energies are not concentrated financially and emotionally into the well being of herself and her children, before and after birth, across the whole social scale.

I do not believe that the ministry of women callously aborts their children. I prefer to believe in the integrity of womanhood.

And it cuts into depth of me that my own sex is very often channeled into the abortion chamber because her situation, be it herself or her child, is socially unacceptable.

Sixteen years ago, without the knowing of any member of my family, I exercised my "right to chose" and legally aborted my own child for social reasons.

Prior to the abortion I was a perfectly healthy woman. As a direct result of the abortion, I contracted an inflammation of my fallopian tubes which left them badly scarred.

How damaged they were did not become apparent until my next pregnancy, an ectopic one, terminated to save my life: which, I add was very touch and go.

Had I died of the ectopic pregnancy it would have been recorded as an indirect death due to the abortion (my fallopian tubes would not have been bruised if I did not have the abortion).

Okay, so you may say "she chose" so why should she impose her views on others? Over 16 years not a day passed that I too have not ached to hold my child. I was assured it was for the best. I still continually face the guilt that allowed the doctor to terminate my child’s life.

It is s heartache that has no ending and an insult to women to assume they "get over these things" they do not. They learn how to survive with these losses. And not only my grief, but the grief of my family as they became aware of the abortion -- no condemnation, just pain.

It is ironic that 20 years onwards, according to the Gallup Poll 1987, 83 percent of doctors now agree that women suffer between slight and severe mental and physical suffering resulting from abortion.

Even pro-abortion movements have counseling centers for women who have abortion experiences. So why in God’s name, knowing the effect on woman alone, do they still persistently lead others to the abortion chambers? Or is there a more lucrative answer to be found?

SPUC offered me the truth, form any baby’s point of view and form my stance as a woman. Yes, it was hard hitting, but it is only in the light of truth can one begin to experience healing.

It is a falsehood to say SPUC condemns women not to abort; it does not. It seeks to preserve all lives.

It is only through such organizations, who believe in total life can one begin to know some semblance of peace.

The abuse never turns to active abuses and receives healing. I bitterly regret my abortion and I resent the silly implication that I would have turned to a back-street abortionist for help. Of that I am certain.

And neither would I have performed my own abortion and I do not believe the majority of women have more integrity than that. If there had not been that law, today I would have had a 16 year-old daughter. What rights did I give her?

Priests for Life
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