Pro-choice researcher; Study shows that abortion is a “traumatic life event”

Melinda Tankard Reist, who compiled a book full of testimonies from women who regretted their abortions, said:

“… In early 2006, a group of researchers in New Zealand published a paper in the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, an international peer-reviewed journal, detailing the findings of an ongoing survey of some 500 women who had been tracked from birth to approximately 25 years of age. The data was drawn from one of the most long-running and valuable longitudinal studies in the world, and the research team had previously published other well-received papers about the findings from their survey.

This study from Australia’s next-door neighbor created an international stir. The researchers had found that the young women in the study who had undergone an abortion were significantly more likely than their peers to experience major depression (nearly double the rate of women who had never been pregnant and 35% higher than those who had carried to term), substance abuse, anxiety disorder, and suicidal behavior.”

The study was:

David M Ferguson, et.al., “Abortion in young women and subsequent mental health,” Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 47 (1): 16 – 24, 2006.

Professor David M Ferguson, leader of the research team:

“I remain pro-choice. I am not religious. I am an atheist and a rationalist. The findings did surprise me, but the results appear to be very robust because they persist across a series of disorders and a series of ages.

Abortion is a traumatic life event; that is, it involves loss, it involves grief, it involves difficulties. And the trauma may, in fact, predispose people to having mental illness.”

Nick Grimm, “Higher Risk of Mental Health Problems after Abortion Report,” Australian Broadcasting Corporation, January 3, 2006

From

 Melinda Tankard Reist Giving Sorrow Words: Women’s Stories of Grief after Abortion (Springfield, IL: Acorn Books, 2007)  XI-XII

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About Sarah

Sarah is a member of the board of The Pro-life Alliance of Gays and Lesbians.
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