My name is Liz Youngs from
Atlanta. For many years, I carried with
me the painful secret of abortion. My
first three children, two girls and a boy, were lost to abortion. I knew abortion was wrong, but each time I
found myself in a crisis pregnancy, I felt cornered. I didn’t want to disappoint my family because
I wasn’t married; I couldn’t count on the father. I couldn’t afford a child on my own. No one
would have to know.
Society says abortion will
take care of the “problem” but no one told me that my life would never be the
same. Ever. After my abortions, I felt relief, but that
quickly turned into unbearable grief and sorrow. I became angry and depressed. I went into full self-destruct mode with
alcohol, drugs, and a food addiction, yet no matter how much I tried to numb
the pain, it was always gnawing away at me.
I was suffering in silence with my secret, afraid to tell anyone because
I had so much guilt and remorse. How
could I have done such a thing to my children?
For many years, I pushed these memories deep down inside myself.
Trying to reassemble my
life, I came back to the Catholic Church where I discovered the PATH ministry
in Atlanta, which offers healing for those suffering from the negative effects
of abortion. I attended a Rachel’s
Vineyard retreat and participated in a post-abortive Bible Study which was
probably one of the hardest and most rewarding things I have ever done. I found PATH to be a safe place to share my
secrets with others who had been there too.
Through my healing journey, I experienced God’s love, grace, mercy and
forgiveness and I was able to acknowledge and embrace my children and accept
their love and forgiveness too.
As the years go by, I have
found my new normal as a mother of one child here on Earth and three children
in Heaven. I may have only one child to
hold onto, but my other three children will always be in my heart. It took an encounter with Christ to remind me
that His mercy is bigger than my poor choices.
I will always regret my abortions, but my children, Cathryn, Rachel and
Matthew existed and were lives that mattered and they will never be forgotten.
And this is why I am SILENT