By Dave Andrusko
Pro-abortionists insist it is the latest and perhaps most visible example of women “telling my story.” This, they maintain, will contribute to the “destigmatization” of abortion.
Pro-lifers look not just at these accounts, but so many like them, and conclude that could not possibly be further from the truth. At one or many levels, most of the women suffered egregiously. The ugly face of abortion—which included many stories of subtle and overt pressure to abort—was everywhere.
For me the most telling observation was
“When I had the ultrasound, I asked for the picture and a nurse said, ‘Seriously?’ A month later, he [the boyfriend] said he regretted it too. When I cry about it, I cry alone. He thinks it would make me sad to talk about, but I don’t want our baby to think we forgot. I’ve never heard of anybody else having an abortion here.”
But our opponents keep trying to salvage something. Today there is “Men Recall the Pain and Turmoil of Abortion,” which appeared at The Root whose stories are written by and for African-Americans.
The writer, Jozen Cummings, was the father of a baby aborted between Cummings’ sophomore and junior years in college. Before he’s telling us that his accounts of three men whose girlfriends aborted are not to be confused with “the many men who are the enemy to abortion rights,” Cummings mentions almost casually, “while I don’t think about it everyday, like I once did, I have never forgotten it.”
But the first story is in many ways very much like so many of the 26 women’s accounts we read at New York magazine. Chad, who is now 32, is honest enough to mention that had he been the least bit supportive’—“ If I said things like I’d be a good father to the child or even if I told her I was against abortion,” for example—“ I feel she would’ve kept it.” When she comes out of the abortion clinic, she’s crying.
“I had nightmares for a while after. It wasn’t consistent, but every now and then.” His dad accuses him of stealing the money from an account he’d set up for his son. When Chad confesses, unexpectedly he doesn’t get in trouble. (Why did he expect his father’s wrath? “For my dad, lying, cheating, and stealing are his cardinal sins, so he thought I committed one of those.” Indeed.)
Chad persuades himself that the absence of punishment meant “I guess he thought I was handling it with a certain level of maturity because I said I had to take care of it,” yet ends, “He and I never talked about it again. He never even told my mother.”
For today I’ll only talk about one more–Lance, who is now 47. Lance and his girlfriend had children from previous marriage and he is not happy when she tell him she is not going to abort their baby. They break up and a few weeks later, she changes her mind.
You have to read Lance incredible string of evasions and self-deceptions. He knows HE is the reason she changed her mind, but he has to be careful: “you can’t seem too joyous about it.” And then, another twist—“and as a matter of fact I wasn’t very joyous about it. So I was walking very carefully with this thing.”
Lance picks her up at the house
“and it had the feel of an execution, which is another reason I wanted to get it done when she first told me. Early on, it feels like it’s pregnancy, it’s just a thing, it’s not a person. But as weeks go by, you see more babies and pregnant women than you have ever seen in your life—you just see them everywhere.”
He is one of the two guys at the abortion clinic. Lance concludes with this:
“When they called her to come to the back, it was rough for me. I think it may have been about 45 minutes. She comes out and she had been crying, which of course was a really hard thing for me to see. We stared at each other, and she says, ‘OK, let’s go.’ I felt a sad relief. It was bittersweet. It doesn’t leave you.”
Tomorrow we’ll talk about the story of the third man and directly connect to some of the accounts of the 26 women we have not discussed before.
A final thought for today. I’m sure the reason pro-abortionists think “telling your story” works to their advantage is that with some exceptions, the women (and men) do not come off as completely heartless, unfeeling people who casually abort.
But my suspicion is that most people who are not on either side of the abortion issue come away with a far different conclusion. Abortion is terrible and painful and that far from “solving” problems it not only compounds them it also leaves a hole in the heart that can never be fully healed.