Lawyer tells story of teenager coerced into an abortion

In an article in the New York Times, a lawyer talks about a case he took regarding a 15-year-old who had an abortion in Tennessee:

“The girl’s mother had been shot and killed by her stepfather, and her grandmother got custody of her. Her dad said come live with him or he would kill himself. She said she couldn’t and he did kill himself.

Four months later, she got pregnant, and the boy said, ‘Have an abortion or I’ll kill myself.’ She wanted the baby, had already chosen a name. But she got pulled into having an abortion.

Within a week she was admitted to the emergency room, crying uncontrollably. She’s been in psychiatric care for more than a year now….

I’ve been working with this little 15-year old for a year, and it’s a way of ministering to the second victims of abortion, the women who’ve been damaged.”

TAMAR LEWIN “A New Weapon In an Old War — A special report.; Latest Tactic Against Abortion: Accusing Doctors of MalpracticeThe New York Times April 9, 1995

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Abortion worker: “The clinic had the feel of a production line”

A former abortion worker said the following:

“I was often reprimanded for spending too much time talking to the girls on the phone or in counseling. Their philosophy was “Get ‘em in, Get ‘em out.” They would add more and more cases until some days the clinic had the feel of a production line.”

Abby Johnson The Walls Are Talking: Former Abortion Clinic Workers Tell Their Stories (San Francisco, CA: Ignatius Press, 2016) 98

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Woman aborts for financial reasons: “I probably will regret it”

According to statistics, money is a factor in most abortions. Most people who abort do so at least in part because they feel they can’t afford to raise a child. In fact, in one poll, 73% of women having abortions gave this as a reason.

These women might have chosen to have their babies if they had had the financial support they needed.

Here is one example from an article in the New York Times.

The article says:

“Leah, 26, said money was a factor in her decision to have an abortion… she works in a clothing boutique, a job that she said did not pay enough to support a child….”

According to Leah:

I always said I would never, ever have an abortion. I probably will regret it.”

She saw an ultrasound of her child, but she was only 5 weeks along, too early for the ultrasound to show detail. The child, at this point, is too small and isn’t developed enough to look like a baby on the ultrasound screen.

Leah says:

“If I saw an actual fetal baby on the ultrasound, I wouldn’t have been able to go through with it.”

Of course, Leah’s baby already had a heartbeat and a developing brain – he or she was a human being, regardless of what he or she looked like.

After her abortion, Leah said:

“I thought I’d be crying. I feel goofy now, but not in a bad way. I feel relieved more than anything. I know I’ll never forget it, but I’d rather do that than have a child I can’t take care of.”

Many women feel relief right after their abortions. After all, they’ve just gone through surgery and it’s now over. The “problem” has been taken care of – or so they think. All too often, depression, regret, grief, and guilt surface later.

On Medium, I wrote a post about poverty and how it drives abortion rates, and possible ways to solve the problem.

JOHN LELAND “Under Din of Abortion Debate, an Experience Shared QuietlyNew York Times SEPT. 18, 2005

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Pro-Choice Christian: “Stewardship” of birth justifies abortion

Judy Mathe Foley is the former managing editor of the national magazine of the Episcopal Church. She is pro-choice and says:

“Birth, though a truly miraculous process, is only one of many miracles in God’s world over which we have stewardship.

Sometimes that stewardship will involve making choices because we are co-creators with God of a constantly evolving creation. Every decision we make cuts off another road – that’s the unfortunate nature of decision-making!”

Judy Mathe Foley “A Faith-Filled Talk of Life and Death” in Phyllis Tickle, ed. Confessing Conscience: Churched Women on Abortion (Nashville, Tennessee: Abingdon Press, 1990) 74 – 75

Click to see what this baby looks like after an abortion

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Post-Abortive Woman: “I Regret This Experience Every Day”

A post-abortive woman named Tammy tells her story:

“I was a scared 16-year-old girl when I had my abortion. It is the worst decision I have ever made and I have regretted it for the nearly 20 years since it happened. I went to a clinic in Illinois. I was a minor, of course, and did not have to have any parental consent.

I also did not receive proper counseling. I have no idea to this day what kind of procedure I had. I was also not sure how far along I was in the pregnancy.

I do remember discussion between the doctor and nurse stating the pregnancy was farther along than they originally thought. That did not stop them from doing the procedure.

I was left afterward feeling worthless, empty, and I regret this experience every single day. It has taken years for me to recover emotionally, although I am not sure if a woman can ever completely recover.”

Janet Morana Everything You Need to Know about Abortion – For Teens (Gastonia, North Carolina: TAN Books, 2021) 111

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Clinic owner “doesn’t know” if abortion is right or wrong

Dr. Tersia Cruywagen, owner of an abortion clinic in South Africa:

“We tell people, “We don’t know if abortion is right or wrong.” We don’t, really. But what we do know is that we deal with a lot of patients in disastrous situations and a lot of emotional pain, and that Is what we want to do – assist them through a very traumatic experience…and make it less traumatic.”

Lara M Knudson Reproductive Rights in a Global Context (Nashville, Tennessee: Vanderbilt University Press, 2006) 203

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Pro-life feminist: women who abort aren’t “free”

Pro-life feminist Frederica Mathewes-Green wrote:

“Abortion is not a sign that women are free, but a sign that they are desperate.”

Frederica Mathewes-Green “Abortion: Women’s Rights and Wrongs” (blog) January 1, 2000

Quoted in Steven A Christie, MD Speaking for the Unborn: 30 Second Pro-Life Rebuttals to Pro-Choice Arguments (Steubenville, Ohio: Emmaus Road Publishing, 2022) 129

Mathewes-Green has interviewed many post-abortive women

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Mother threatens to kick pregnant teen out of the house unless she has abortion

Lauren, a teen who had an abortion, was interviewed. Here is an excerpt from the interview:

“Q: And had you decided straightaway what you were going to do?

L: No, I were going to keep it, but, em, going to get rid of it.

Q: What persuaded you?

L: Well, ‘cos I’m too young and I want a job, and basically I would have nowhere to live, if I did keep it, you [to mother] said you wouldn’t have me would you not with a baby.”

Sharon Tabberer, Christine Hall, Shirley Prendergast, and Andrew Webster Teenage Pregnancy and Choice: Abortion or Motherhood: Influences on the Decision (York, UK: Joseph Rowntree Foundation, 2000) 35 – 36

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Post-abortive woman describes her traumatic abortion

Jeannie Smith, a postabortion woman who is now pro-life, describes her abortion:

“Internally I was screaming STOP! But I knew it was too late.
As I listened to the sound of the procedure, I slowly rolled my head to the left only to feel a tear of pain trickle down my face…

Little did I know that one tear would remain with me the rest of my life. It would cause years of pain, an unhappy life filled with shame, and guilt that eventually caused a heart of stone.”

Jeannie Smith Shattered into Beautiful: Delivering the Brokenhearted from Abortion (Enumclaw, Washington: WinePress Publishing, 2011) 15

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Pro-Choice Activist: Sometimes a woman has to kill her baby

Judith Arcana, Pro-Choice Author and Educator:

“Sometimes a woman has to decide to kill her baby. That is what abortion is.”

Rosalind Cummings, “In Print: rights of the accused,” Chicago Weekly Reader, Friday, February 17, 1995

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