Share Your Story

 

The ministry of Project Rachel arose in response to the stories women told about the hurt they experienced after their abortion. Stories recounting suffering that has lasted months and even years after an abortion continue to be expressed by men and women in our offices and others throughout the world.

 

Whether they are told in support group settings, in many published books (see Resources), or on the Internet, the pain of abortion continues to emerge. Even those who advocate for the right of a woman to choose abortion tell of the grief, sorrow, confusion and struggle to cope with the aftermath of the most common surgical procedure performed in the United States.

 

Reading and listening to what they have to say, it soon becomes apparent that a great number of these women have experienced the same kinds of suffering after their abortions – that there is, in other words, a kind of pattern of loss that they share.

 

The following are quotations from women expressing, in their own words, the grief they experienced after abortion. They are drawn from the types of sources noted above.

 

A final category reflects the hope and peace women have expressed after their emotional and spiritual wounds have healed.

 

QUOTATIONS

Click to read 'RELIEF'


Everything I read on abortion before I experienced it told me that 99.9 percent of women who have abortions do not suffer from depression or regret afterwards. In fact, the information told me I could expect to feel relieved. Where did they get all that from? I will never be the same again.

Soon the relief wore off and I felt increased self-loathing.

At first it was more of a relief. Now I am overcome with grief and sadness.

I walked out as if nothing in my life had changed but everything had.

Click to read 'SEEING BABIES OR PREGNANT WOMEN LATER'


I look at a baby and wonder why he couldn’t be mine. I suffer every time I see an infant. I can finally hold babies again but it tears me apart. I want to cry when I see babies. . . I just wish to hold [Samantha] in my arms. Pregnant women make me jealous. I think about the baby I could have had everyday but I’m supposed to go on with my life.

The very word ‘pregnancy’ fills me with intense pain and I don’t know how to escape this jail of sadness I am locked in….

Every time I see a child that would be around the same age as mine would have been , I get upset. Every time I see a pregnant woman I get jealous and upset.

Click to read 'THINK OF CHILD EVERY DAY'


Not a day goes by that I don’t think of my lost child. When I wake up in the morning, I know I’ve had an abortion. I would never wish this pain on anybody.

The ghost of the missed happiness torments for years and years even the most rational woman. When you decide not to keep your baby, you start to have two lives: one, real that ONLY SEEMS like the one you had before, the other one, real only for your heart, with your baby, that grows and makes you happy.

He was real and he was our son and I miss him.

I always try to say goodnight to [Michael] before I go to bed. I tell him I love him. I know he is with me everywhere I go….I usually wind up crying before I go to bed.

I still cry. There isn’t a day that goes by and I don’t think of the baby, what he or she would look like.

There is not day that goes by that I don’t think about my baby boy. … Every November when it gets close to what would have been his due date I get so sad. … And here I am 12 years later with three beautiful children still with that ache in my heart. … If anything I feel more guilty now after seeing what great parents we both are.

I made myself not think about what I was doing, just put my heart away and do what had to be done. I was devastated. . . . There isn’t a day that goes by I don’t think about my baby.

I am so sorry. I think about you every day.

Click to read 'EMPTINESS, NUMBNESS & ALONENESS'


I felt abandoned, incredibly lonely.

I hold my stomach and I feel an emptiness.

I have this gaping hole inside of me.

I feel empty inside, a shell of a person.I feel empty and alone… part of me is missing now.

I feel disconnected from my own body and my own feelings.

I felt like I left a part of my soul back at the clinic and I felt empty inside.

I feel numb and dead inside.

There is a place in my heart that only you can fill. It is the space where you will always be my daughter.

I want another child … to fill the void in my life.

I feel constantly one step away from myself and my own life.

I don’t know if I will ever be free of the sorrow which has become a deep ache inside of me, and it frightens me to imagine having to carry this pain all through my life. … Abortion is a dark place. An enormous emptiness.

Life will never be the same … There will always be an empty page in my life, and my heart is broken. Part of me died the day she was taken from me.

I feel very numb most of the time.

Such emptiness. A void in my heart. There is never a way to fill the void.

Numb, profound sense of loss, aloneness…

Click to read 'NIGHTMARES'


Nightmares of a baby crying and not being able to find him…

I close my eyes at night and I see myself back in that clinic … on that table. I just feel like dying inside.

I have nightmares of a child I cannot reach.

Click to read 'CAN'T GRIEVE, OTHERS DON'T UNDERSTAND'


I felt there was something wrong with me for being as affected by my abortion as I was.

I couldn’t speak about it to anyone for such a long time and if I did they all agreed that I didn’t do anything wrong. Or they told me that abortion was a good thing. Everyone seemed to agree that abortion was A-OK. A necessary evil. So I went where I consider to be underground emotionally. Society doesn’t allow grieving. Wants I am woman, I chose it.

I wished I had been warned in advance that abortion isn’t really the no big deal everyone makes it out to be.

… where to turn to understand my grieving, that it’s normal, and I’m not a freak of nature.

My friend told me: “Sorry you feel bad but it was the best thing. Get over it.”

My husband doesn’t understand, he says he can’t talk about it, that it’s better left in the past but I can’t let it go.

This has been a very big deal for me.

He doesn’t understand what the big deal is. I guess only a mother could.

I can’t even grieve properly. What am I supposed to grieve? I have nothing.

There are no memories to share for I was the only one who knew her. Grieving for my unborn child is very lonely.

He thought I would have an abortion and everything would be normal.

He said, “Why are you crying? You need to grow up.”

Click to read 'DIED'


I felt abandoned, incredibly lonely.

I hold my stomach and I feel an emptiness.

I have this gaping hole inside of me.

I feel empty inside, a shell of a person.I feel empty and alone… part of me is missing now.

I feel disconnected from my own body and my own feelings.

I felt like I left a part of my soul back at the clinic and I felt empty inside.

I feel numb and dead inside.

There is a place in my heart that only you can fill. It is the space where you will always be my daughter.

I want another child … to fill the void in my life.

I feel constantly one step away from myself and my own life.

I don’t know if I will ever be free of the sorrow which has become a deep ache inside of me, and it frightens me to imagine having to carry this pain all through my life. … Abortion is a dark place. An enormous emptiness.

Life will never be the same … There will always be an empty page in my life, and my heart is broken. Part of me died the day she was taken from me.

I feel very numb most of the time.

Such emptiness. A void in my heart. There is never a way to fill the void.

Numb, profound sense of loss, aloneness…

Click to read 'WISH TO TURN BACK TIME, FIND IT WAS A DREAM'


I was hoping it was a bad dream.

I learned too late that I was also a real mother

I wanted to turn the clocks back. Such emptiness. A void in my heart. There is never a way to fill the void.

I wish and wish that I could erase those hours.

Click to read 'HEALING'


After the abortion, I never would have believed things could get better. But, amazingly, since my post-abortion counseling I have experienced hope and healing and self-forgiveness.
-Janice

I can now look at my one and a half year old daughter without feeling the pangs of guilt, remorse, regret and sorrow.
-Wendy

Years after my abortion, I was married and became pregnant with my son. Carrying this baby was a painful reminder of my first child that never was allowed to live. But somehow, through this birth came reconciliation and resolution.
-Renee

Healing for me has not been forgetting the abortion completely, but integrating it into my life, using this experience as an opportunity for growth and working towards bringing some closure.
-Bonnie

Taking responsibility for my abortion was the first step toward healing. After some post-abortion counseling, a support group and a lot of hard work, I began to feel whole again.
-Emily

The fact that I was personally against abortion ended up being the largest obstacle to my healing. I felt like the biggest hypocrite-going completely against my belief and values-until I realized that this experience made me more connected to those women facing an unplanned pregnancy. I could feel their desperation, relate to their confusion and reach out in genuine compassion, empathy and solidarity. I could tell them there is a better way; there is a better choice.
-Maddi

Learning how to forgive myself was the most difficult part. Believing that I was still lovable was nothing short of miraculous.
-Carole

I can now look at myself without seeing a lonely, selfish, desperate young woman. I see a woman who has grieved the loss of a baby and mourned the part of myself which died along with the baby. Someone was there to help pick up the pieces of my broken life and help me move on.
-Zoe

I used to wish…’if only I had a chance to do it all over again’…Of course I can’t change the past, but I have learned from it. How I live my life now and will continue to live is a reflection of the peace that has come through healing.
-Cassandra

Sometimes it starts with a decision. Knowing you have to walk through the fire in order to get to the other side can be frightening. You have to experience the pain of fire, but once you’ve made it across, you forever bask in it’s cleansing warmth.

-Cassandra

Fragmented becoming cohesive
Brokenness made whole
Feeling again
Peace at last