Sunday’s New York Magazine features testimonials from twenty-six women who have had their unborn children aborted. The stories are raw and revealing. These are not stories of feminist liberation and power. They are the stories of women who have pangs of conscience over what they have done. Some of them have muddled through the aftermath by suppressing their consciences. One woman even says, “There’s no room to talk about being unsure.” Other women aren’t able to pretend and are obviously living with a heavy burden of grief and regret. The first story is from a 19-year old named Nicole (pictured at right). She writes,
It was this past spring. The due date’s coming up—I’m dreading it. I wanted to keep it. My boyfriend always had football practice, so he couldn’t go to the doctor appointments with me. If he’d gon e, he would’ve felt differently. But he said, “No way.” I wanted to show him that I loved him enough to do it for him. When I was thirteen weeks, we made an appointment at the closest clinic in Kentucky, four hours away, but the night before, we decided not to go. At two in the morning, he called and said, “Get dressed.” I said, “I don’t want to go.” We both cried the whole way there. I don’t think abortion is killing, but I’d always been against it. When I told him the credit-card scanner at the clinic wasn’t working, he asked if I was making it up. We went to get $1,000 from a gas-station ATM. I was hysterical, and he said, “Okay, you don’t have to go back.” I was so happy. Then he said, “We drove all this way. Stop crying, act like a woman.” I was angry, but I was so sleepy and tired of fighting. When I had the ultrasound, I asked for the picture and a nurse said, “Seriously?” A month later, he said he regretted it too. When I cry about it, I cry alone. He thinks it would make me sad to talk about, but I don’t want our baby to think we forgot. I’ve never heard of anybody else having an abortion here.
There are 25 more of these stories. Go read them.
In the intro to the testimonials, the author Meaghan Winter makes this observation:
Abortion is something we tend to be more comfortable discussing as an abstraction; the feelings it provokes are too complicated to face in all their particularities. Which is perhaps why, even in doggedly liberal parts of the country, very few people talk openly about the experience, leaving the reality of abortion, and the emotions that accompany it, a silent witness in our political discourse. Even now, four decades after Roe, some of the women we spoke with would talk only if we didn’t print their real names.
How revealing, but apparently not to everyone. Could it be that the demand for anonymity and euphemisms like “complicated” are testifying to a rather obvious moral reality? Many of these women have an innate sense that these babies really are babies—their babies!—but their consciences are collapsing underneath the lies being told to them by feminist propaganda. It’s so very sad but also so very illuminating. Wisdom cries aloud in the streets (Prov. 1:20). Is anyone listening?
(HT: Albert Mohler)
James Harold Thomas
Stories like these are absolutely essential to the pro-life cause. Same goes for those horrifying pictures of aborted children. Reasoned arguments certainly serve their purpose, but nothing clears the air like the smell of burnt marsh-wiggle.
Heartbreaking to read. But this is reality. There are faces, emotions, stories, and souls behind the abortion debate. Some of these women describe the people on my side of the debate (pro-life) in terms that I would not want used to describe me. May our speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that we may know how we ought to answer each person.