By SPUC—the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children
An explosive Mumsnet post [www.mumsnet.com] has revealed how some men in the UK have been coercing women to undergo abortions against their will. Recently, Abortion Recovery Care and Helpline (ARCH), has stressed that “coerced abortion is a form of abuse.”
On August 10th, one woman took to Mumsnet, a British website for parents, seeking help after her husband began pressuring her to have an abortion.
The distressing account racked up messages of outrage before being removed by Mumsnet for ‘privacy purposes.’
Since the post appeared online, SPUC has uncovered 10 pages on Mumsnet, brimming with women seeking help after feeling forced by their male partners to undergo an abortion.
Louise Grant, ARCH Director said
“While pressure to have an abortion may be directed from family, friends or even healthcare professionals, we find that it can come mostly from men. For this reason, society has a duty to recognise that abortion is a form of domestic abuse. In the UK we have witnessed nothing less than complacency and silent collusion with this form of abuse. We need to extend our efforts to protect women from becoming victims of this abuse.”
“He said if I keep the baby he will never forgive me”
The anonymous woman, aged 35, who posted her agonizing account on a Mumsnet forum [on August 10 ]described how her husband of two years has been trying to make her abort their unborn child.
The abusive man has told his pregnant wife that if she did not abort their unborn baby he will never be able to forgive her.
The post reads:
“I’m pregnant at 35 and although surprising news, I want to keep the baby. My husband on the other hand is saying he’s not ready for a child and says he wants to have an abortion.
“This is devastating for me…I love him so much. I don’t want to do it but I don’t want to loose him.
“He says that if I go through with it our relationship will be negatively affected for ever and he wont be able to forgive me for taking the decision out of his hands. He says it’s not fair that the decision just falls with me….
“What do I do? I’m so upset and can’t stop crying….I was forced into an abortion I didn’t want with my previous partner ten years ago and my guilt has never left me. I can’t believe this is happening again.”
Coerced abortion is common in the UK
ARCH’s Ms Grant said: “Since this woman’s account appeared online, endless posts from women seeking help from abortion coercion have been uncovered. The collection of online posts all contain the same heartbreaking messaging. One woman states ‘my husband was horrified and demanded I have an abortion’, another woman said her ‘partner will leave if I don’t abort.’ Another woman said: ‘my boyfriend forcing me for abortion.’
Research by polling company D-Cyfor recently revealed that one in seven UK women has been forced to undergo an abortion. Experts have also called for UK healthcare professionals to be vigilant in screening for coercion, after a study suggested that a quarter of US women were subjected to coercion surrounding an abortion decision, with the study branding coercion as ‘common.’
Ms Grant added: “The heart-breaking reality is that most women are pressurised or coerced in some way into an abortion decision, whether it be subtly, harshly, or somewhere between the two. A concerning 75% of women contacting ARCH have experienced some form of pressure or coercion, many not even realising at the time what or who she is being pressured by.”