I was nineteen, a freshman in college in Pittsburgh, PA and pregnant from my first boyfriend. It was January of 1973. I was told, by a friend, to go to Planned Parenthood. A staff person at Planned Parenthood referred me for an abortion in Washington, DC. The counselor told me my baby was a “a blob of tissue”...”there was nothing really there.” As I remember, I was around six weeks pregnant.
I was told “abortion was quick, safe, and that I could go on with my life.” I was never told about the development of my baby or the risks of abortion.
The force of the suction abortion was severe. There was no doctor/patient relationship. I was told there would be a “tugging”, like strong menstrual cramps. What I felt was intense pain and as though not only my baby but also my soul was being suctioned out.
I did not see the abortionist before the abortion or after the abortion. My heart and my life changed that day. I began to stuff the pain of abortion. My own worth and value began to diminish.
Within a year, I was diagnosed with breast disease and went into a deep depression using drugs and alcohol to bury the pain of the abortion. I left college and began a destructive lifestyle of promiscuity, drugs, alcohol, bulimia, thoughts of suicide, and continued abortions.
During one abortion, part of my baby was left inside. Planned Parenthood referred me to another abortionist. After crying in deep pain, with my arms grabbing the wall, the abortionist looked at me and told the nurse I was too far along. He told me to get up, get dressed, and get out. I left bleeding heavily, in pain, passing parts of my baby and given no additional care. Afraid, ashamed, and alone, I sought help from a physician who admitted me to the hospital for an emergency D & C. Abortion didn’t end my problem, it added to my pain.
One year after marriage, I miscarried, due to the scarring in my uterus as a result of my abortions. In subsequent pregnancies, my obstetrician told me I was at risk and would have to remain in bed for my health and the health of my children. As a child, my son told me, “Mom, I feel like there was someone before me...” He longed for an older brother.
Abortion does not end at the abortionist table. Abortion rips a woman’s soul and has cost this nation, as women suffer in silent shame, masking their pain in drugs, alcohol, repeat abortions, eating disorders, inability to bond with future children, infertility, miscarriage, abusive relationships, raising our children... a generation in post abortion pain. It is time for the lie of abortion to end. It is time for the millions of women with abortion in their past and for our nation to heal. It is time.