Questioning the pro-choice orthodoxy unleashes howls of empty rhetoric, because indoctrinated people cannot listen anymore. “Don’t tell me what your religion demands I do with my life!” “You and your ilk . . .” (My ilk?) “Abortion does not murder women’s souls!”
Yes, it does.
Thirty years ago, there was a kinetic energy in my belly as I stroked it while looking in the mirror in the Queens apartment of the man I loved. We had spoken about marriage, and I was about to tell him I was pregnant. I was full of hope for a beautiful life with children and the cello recitals I would hear them perform.
But that dream was soon broken. “If you have this baby, I’ll leave you!” Only the life inside my body moved—innocently, with no question of its right to exist—as I looked at the man I loved more than God. He had paralyzed time with his threat. I wanted to die.
My father had passed away almost 15 years earlier. My mother, who was suffering from non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, had a fierce temper, especially when it came to criticizing me. I needed this man. “If you have an abortion, I’ll stay, and we’ll have another child one day,” he promised. I believed him.
On the table at the hospital, legs spread, I cried. “Do you really want to do this?” asked the doctor. “Yes,” I said, and they put me under. The man I loved was there to take me home. To punish myself, I gained 60 pounds. We got married. After seven years, I asked for that other child. “No,” he said, “You’d be an unfit mother. One day, I’ll have to take care of you.”
I left him.
For the next 23 years, my life was an improvisation of brilliant moments and heartbreaking failure. I was unfit to take care of myself, unfit to handle money, unfit to maintain a relationship, unfit to make coherent decisions. And then my life crashed. He helps support me now, as he once predicted. I am destitute, save for him and my disability check.
One friend said, “After what he did to you, for you to take money from him disgusts me.” Another friend said, “He’s redeeming himself.” The truth must be in the middle somewhere.
But in all that time, there has not been one day without regret. At age sixty, I can finally say that abortion murdered my soul—because I killed my baby, and it was not my choice.
Post-abortion grief exists. It steals your life. Don’t be blind. Don’t let anyone make you deny your feelings, conform to a political view, or coerce you into thinking this has anything to do with religion. This is about the life and death of a child, and consequently, the life and death of your own soul.