The “Problem” Didn’t Just Go Away

It was her senior year of high school. Molly found out she was pregnant and didn’t want to tell her parents. Her boyfriend told her to get an abortion, it would make things easier and she wouldn’t get into trouble. She was scared and just wanted the problem to go away. There was so much life ahead of her and she was too young to have a baby.

“I was in the recovery room after they finished the abortion and I remember feeling like I was dead inside. I felt lost, suicidal, and not like me anymore. I lost my self esteem, my confidence, I lost Molly! The adults at the clinic told me I would have a bright future, when in reality I did not want to live at all.”  -Molly

So many emotions can enter a woman’s mind after an abortion. Depression, anger, loss of self-confidence, loneliness or isolation are not uncommon for women who have aborted their unborn baby.  Part of the recovery process is identifying each emotion, whether it is grief, regret, or shame, and then talking with trained professionals in how to deal with each of these stressful emotions.  Unfortunately, if left buried these emotions can escalate if not addressed. This post-abortion grief or trauma can lead to abusing drugs and alcohol, with an added risk of suicide.

-A Finnish study revealed a six-fold increased rate of deaths from suicide among aborting women.

-A study conducted in Wales on 408,000 women between 1991 and 1995, found that women who had induced abortions were 225 percent more likely to commit suicide, than women admitted for normal delivery.

- A recent American study came up with similar results, examining the medical records of 173,279 low-income women who had abortions in 1989. Four years later the annual suicide rate was found to be 160 percent higher among the aborting women than those who delivered their babies. study 

The main reason given for suicide after an abortion is the long-term clinical depression suffered by a percentage of women.

A woman doesn’t have to be visibly suicidal or even obviously depressed to be affected. Usually emotions are seen in more subtle ways: A feeling of guilt or shame that will not go away, a depression that is felt all the time or on the anniversary date of the abortion. It can be difficult to carry these emotions silently and very often, many women do. The burden can be overwhelming.

“I had 2 abortions; one when I was 17 and the other when I was 22. I lived with the pain and depression caused by those mistakes for over 27 years. I spent most of that time trying to deny that I had any lasting problems from those procedures.

During this time I suffered from major depression and suicidal thoughts. I felt like I wasn’t worthy to be anyone’s friend or even to be alive. It wasn’t until I heard someone from Project Rachel tell her story. My husband and I were in our car coming home and I began crying along with the lady on the radio and I knew right then that I needed to grieve and mourn the death of my two children.”   - Rachel

Another woman told The Postabortion Review newsletter published by the Elliot Institute. She had her abortion when she was 16 in 1977, and still suffers.  She said:

 “I began to drink heavily and use drugs. I had severe depressions in which I contemplated suicide. I had, and still have, horrible nightmares involving babies and people trying to kill me. I still get depressed and cry a lot. I pray at night that God will let my baby know that I didn’t kill him because I hated him. I long to hold him so much now that it hurts, and I want him to know that.

I have spent many years trying to push the memory of what I have done to the back of my mind, but it won’t stay there. I have constantly compared my dead child to what he would have been doing had he lived. I understand that most women who choose to abort experience the same feelings. My child would have been in first grade this year. It’s very hard for me to look at a first grader.”

Read her full story here.

Women who have undergone an abortion have endured both a physical and emotional trauma. If you or someone you know is suffering please consider reaching out for support.

At FreeWomensClinic, we provide no cost, confidential services. We are here to listen and help you cope during the recovery process. We are available to those that have just found out they are pregnant as well as give post abortion assistance for those looking to recover.  Even if you feel a slight depression or just the need to talk to someone about your experience, please call. We are here to listen and support you.