Using our past to His glory

California,  United States
I had an abortion because I wanted to hide the shame of engaging in pre-marital sex.  My boyfriend and I were supposed to be Christians and our families would have been humiliated and embarrassed.  Even though he was working full-time and could have supported us, he didn't offer to marry me.  We were already making plans to get married and had bought property for our first home.  My parents made it clear that I was on my own and not to expect any help from them in raising the baby.  My father never confronted my boyfriend and they never told his parents.  I think if I had told his parents, they would have supported my having the baby.  I couldn't think clearly because of the panic of the situation.  Later, I thought that I should have left my parents and boyfriend to live with my grandma and have the baby.

During the abortion, I was frightened, disgusted, and deeply miserable.  I felt silent protests inside of me.  But, once you've signed the paperwork and are in the clinic, you will not be coming out pregnant.  I was even willing to let them just keep the money. Yet, I remained silent.  It felt like rape.  I remember them giving all the women valium and looking around the room at all the other women and girls and thinking we were lambs to the slaughter.

Immediately after the abortion I felt despondent and wanted to die.  Other women in the recovery room were sobbing and equally miserable.  I didn't want to have anything to do with my boyfriend anymore and I know his failure to protect me and the baby led to the demise of our later marriage.  I had him take me home, but no one was there.  Then, I had him take me to my parents at my brother's baseball game because I didn't want to be alone.

As time went on after the abortion I felt numb and hardened.  It seems that my heart was deeply scarred at the same time my uterus was.  There was nothing soft left in me.  The essence of my femininity was destroyed.  I became driven to succeed and any sweetness in my nature I previously possessed was gone.  I was not able to have intimacy with people because I couldn't really trust them, certainly not Christians.  I was very successful professionally, but my marriage to the baby's father ended with my adultery and I became sexually promiscuous.  I adopted a jaded attitude towards men-I can't really depend upon them or rely upon them for any support.  My life began unraveling about 20 years after the abortion.  The more successful I became professionally, the more I disdained that "successful" life and resented that I didn't have a family.  When I found out that the abortion 20 years earlier had left me sterile, I fell apart.  All the hurt and rage began boiling inside me.  I resented my ex-husband and his family.  He was able to move on and have children with his second wife.

I found help and forgiveness through a PACE program at the local Crises Pregnancy Center.  I did not forgive my parents and boyfriend during that weekend, but over time, I've realized that Christ bore all the wrath of God over my sin on my behalf on the cross.  I've learned that I must bear the unfairness of the situation and share the good news of God's mercy to others.  While I would like to say that the adoption of my two sons from Russia is the happy ending, that would be untrue.  My oldest suffers from Reactive Attachment Disorder; he cannot give or accept love.  He seems to be on a criminal path at the age of 14, his conscience seems void, and his future looks bleak.  I don't know what the future of this lifetime holds, but I do know that followers of Christ must suffer as He suffered.  The theology of our spiritual adoption is becoming more clear to me and I am increasingly humbled.  While I failed to love my own biological child enough to protect and preserve her life, I am now called to love a rebellious child who doesn't want me as his mother.  I am learning how God loves people who do terrible things; who, in fact, suffer from a spiritual Reactive Attachment Disorder. God doesn't always take away the consequences of our actions, but He is faithful to use them to His glory.

Priests for Life