A recent article that I read said abortion hurts women. When I was 19, I was looking for help with a difficult situation while in college and no one mentioned the possibility that my choice might hurt me.
The negative impact of abortion continues to be a controversial topic between pro-life and pro-choice groups. There is still an ongoing debate about whether abortion is like other traumatic events that cause Post-Traumatic Stress, or more specifically, Post-Abortion Stress (PAS). It is not recognized by the American Psychological Association (APA) despite years of research proving that it is a real condition for many women.
There is an informative article concerning the history of the debate titled, “A Tidal Wave of Published Data, More Than 30 Studies in Last Five Years Show Negative Impact of Abortion on Women” by Priscilla Coleman, Ph.D. Dr. Coleman is the leading published expert about the real and psychological impact of abortion on women.
PAS, as described on the Ramah International website, is “a form of post-traumatic stress disorder. The process of making an abortion choice, experiencing the procedure and living with the grief, pain and regret is certainly, at its very core, traumatic. As with any trauma, individuals often try to “forget” the ordeal and deny or ignore any pain that may result. Many simply don’t relate their distress to the abortion experience. At some point, however, memories resurface and the truth of this loss can no longer be denied. During these moments, the pain of post-abortion stress reveals itself in the hearts of millions of lives.”
For me, I spent years in denial after my abortion. At first I used alcohol, relationships and a career to hide from it. The pain became most intense when I became pregnant again. The realization of what I had done became so vivid during my pregnancy, that overwhelming regret brought me to my knees several times.
If you are considering an abortion, or have had an abortion, read about the potential impact on your life, especially now that there is enough research available. I think understanding PAS is a way for women to learn about the long term risks. But most importantly, you need to talk to someone personally about your decision that understands the effects of abortion and can help you. I wish I had.
If you’d like to read Dr. Coleman’s article, go to: http://theunchoice.com/News/colemanresearcharticle.html