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A Sadness Most Profound

By an abortion survivor

Having been asked to write about my experience with abortion, and my ready acquiesce, once seated in front of my computer, all sorts of emotions assault me. Even having known God’s awesome grace aiding and abetting my emotional escape through healing, a sadness rises from a place deep within. A sadness most profound.

Growing up was quite normal despite the usual family dysfunctions. My parents were of the old school that believed overt demonstrations of emotion were a sign of weakness. Thus words or acts of love, acceptance or affirmation did not feature in my relationship with them. This had a profound impact on my self-esteem.

At the age of 15 I discovered boys, the ones that would whisper those elusive words, ‘I love you’, in exchange for sex. It was a two-way thing. I got the ‘affirmation’ I so desperately needed, and they got to develop their sexual prowess. At 17 I fell pregnant. I was in a ‘steady relationship’ and was thrilled. I felt that in having a baby, I would finally be able to give and receive the pure love I craved. My parents didn’t share my enthusiasm. They were adamant that this was a disaster and set about arranging an abortion. As the date drew near, I consoled myself with the ‘fact’ that we were just fixing a mistake.

Coming around from the anaesthetic, it felt like I’d been left with a large gaping hole in the centre of my being. Like I’d been gutted. A silent scream fought for and found no escape. My heart needed to be quickly shut down lest its protests penetrate my intellect, which insisted that it was for the best. Out of touch with my heart, function was all I did. My life took on all the vestiges of a run away train, through drinking, partying, and relationships.

Two years later I fell pregnant again. Being totally out of touch with my heart, I went down the same route.  I drove myself to the hospital, filled in the forms, and then waited my turn in the queue. I struck up a conversation with the girl behind me. ‘How old is your baby’, she asked. ‘What baby?’

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“…it felt like I’d been left with a large gaping hole in the centre of my being. Like I’d been gutted. A silent scream fought for and found no escape.”


I responded, confused. ‘The one you are pregnant with.’ She casually remarked. ‘Three months’, I returned. This conversation had a profound affect on me. Up until that moment I’d never thought of it as a baby. It had been an unplanned, unwanted, pregnancy. Unfortunately the image of a baby didn’t have time to develop, before it was my turn on the gurney.

I married young and shortly after, I fell pregnant. Having a baby was the only way I knew how to fill that gaping hole in the centre of my being. Soon after the birth however, that hole screamed to be filled again.

Four children later, I was still struggling. My life had been plagued by depression, suicide thoughts, self-mutilation, and a manic compulsion to keep busy. I was finding it harder to ignore that silent scream, or erase the now fully developed image of a mutilated baby! Despite time and having become a Christian, I’d found no relief.  Only once I gave my heart permission to feel the pain, with God’s help, have I experienced healing.

I am still sad. I keep tabs of their ages, approximate birthdays, and often wonder how their lives would have turned out. I know my life would have been so different had I given them life, in ways I’ll never know.

Abortion devastates. Not just the unborn child, but also the lives of the woman, her partner, and the would-be grandparents are all affected in some degree. As women we have been created to protect and nurture our young. The womb is a place of warmth and security. When it is invaded during a termination, the very centre of a woman’s being is violated. Physically, emotionally and spiritually our beings are assaulted. The only way to cope with such trauma is to shut down. We cease to live from our hearts.

If you are considering abortion please speak to a counsellor before you do anything that you will live to regret. There are alternatives. Circumstances change, but you can’t undo an abortion.  It is a life or death decision.

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