Former Clinic Worker: Linda Couri

Linda Couri worked for Planned Parenthood first as a volunteer and then as an employee. she had an abortion herself before working at Planned Parenthood. An article (TIM GRAVES “From Planned Parenthood to Pro-Life” National Catholic Register Aug 24, 2011) says the following:

For Couri, her abortion at the Planned Parenthood business revealed that “there is nothing joyful about abortion. Some women are complacent, but most just bare-knuckle their way through it.”


“Throughout the next decade, she thought little about the abortion and her complicity in ending the life of her unborn child, “tucking it away in a comfortable, intellectual place.” Like many post-abortive women, the experience led her to get involved in pro-abortion political activism. Indeed, Couri contends that the movement to defend legal abortion is fueled by post-abortive women.

Couri became a volunteer, and later an employee, of Planned Parenthood. She worked in Champaign, Ill., about a three-hour drive from Chicago, and she presented sex-education classes in schools.

As the only mental-health professional on staff, she also counseled girls seeking abortions. But, according to Couri, she actually focused on preparing these young women for their abortions by reviewing the steps of the procedure. The counseling part of the interview mostly consisted of her asking patients: “Do you know what you’re doing?” “Is this what you want to do?”

Memories culled from those “counseling” sessions still haunt Couri. One woman, a married university professor with three children, was clearly struggling with the decision. She could have gone either way. In the end, she had the abortion, and Couri never saw her again.

nine – 10 weeks – many abortions are done at this age

Now, Couri expresses “a lot of regret when I think of her. I could have dissuaded her from having an abortion, and I didn’t.”

Truth be told, while working at there, Couri had become conflicted about the morality of abortion: She supported Roe v. Wade, but she also believed the unborn child was a human being and that abortion destroyed the child’s life.

During one counseling session with an unmarried 16-year-old, Couri offered a range of options: Keep the child and rear him herself, put the baby up for adoption, or have an abortion.

Then the girl asked, “If I have an abortion, am I killing my baby?”

Couri responded, “‘Kill’ is a strong word, and so is ‘baby.’ You’re terminating the product of conception.”

seven weeks

Couri was haunted by guilt and was uneasy about the girl’s abortion. Her questions had triggered doubt in Couri’s mind. the article goes on:

Yet, in her heart, Couri knew better, and she later shared her concerns with her supervisor.

Most Planned Parenthood staffers are women, Couri noted, and many, like her, will privately concede that they have mixed feelings about abortion:

“You can’t be a woman and not be conflicted about it.”

Her supervisor suggested that the 16-year-old’s choice for abortion would be the lesser of two evils. For Couri, the telling point was that abortion was acknowledged as an “evil.”

Couri began attending mass. Her pro-abortion friends and coworkers made fun of her. She wore her Planned Parenthood badge to church, and was still working there. When a priest who was counseling her brought up her involvement with PP, she reacted with hostility. But later, at a retreat, she decided to leave PP. Eventually, she began to suffer what she called a “nervous breakdown” and went to the church for help. When she got involved with Project Rachel, she became pro-life and is now a pro-life speaker.

Another thing that made her question her stance and eventually led to her leaving was stated in another article:

She read journals where women recorded their feelings right after abortions and was amazed that many of them were upset and said, “I’ve killed my baby.”

Deborah Donovan “Former Planned Parenthood worker from Libertyville tells anti-abortion journey” Daily Herald Sept 23, 2012

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Author: Sarah

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

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