By Melissa Ohden
Editor’s note. Melissa is the survivor of a “failed” saline abortion in 1977. She speaks all over the world including at the last three National Right to Life Conventions. She writes frequently for NRL News Today.
“One killed, one wounded.” We’ve all heard this definition of abortion many times. It is a helpful phrase that has been used over the years to make sure we appreciate that a second life is forever altered by an abortion
While I can agree with it as far as it goes, it stops short of capturing how many people are deeply affected by an abortion, how wide is abortion’s lethal sweep. Abortion doesn’t just wound one person, it wounds multiple people.
I’ve taken a brief hiatus this summer from writing. I have once again waded waist-deep into the pain of abortion and its effect on my entire family–paternal, maternal, adoptive and biological. It all comes back to how this one decision, to end a life, changes everyone and everything.
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What I know now, thanks to continued breakthroughs in terms of contact with members of my birthmother’s family, is that there was no “choice” nearly 36 years ago: she was forced to abort me. What I know now is that the circumstances surrounding that forced abortion and the circumstances after it are far worse than I understood or could have even imagined.
I spoke to my (adoptive) mother earlier this week. As she shared with me this painful new knowledge about the abortion I’d survived, the pain she experienced as my mother was beyond comprehension. So overpowering were her tears that my mother couldn’t even speak after telling me that not one, but two nurses defied the abortionist’s orders to leave me alone and “allow” me to die.
“One killed, one wounded” reminds us that there is not only one victim in every abortion. However the truth is—as my two mothers, biological and adoptive can attest—that abortion changes a multitude of lives.
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