We asked our Facebook followers: “For those of you who used to be pro-choice, what made you change your mind?” The post blew up, with hundreds of thoughtful comments. Here are just a few of our favorites.
Jamie S.: Actually listening to pro-life people instead of just dismissing them, and researching the science of the developing embryo as my unborn baby developed inside of me. I began questioning what I was actually fighting for –what could be more important than the tiny little life that was growing inside of me, whose sole protector was me?
Bradley B.: I hate to admit this but it was one of those great big billboards showing baby remains on my college campus. In my case it was an arm and a torso next to a dime. It was just so visceral and made me truly stop and consider what we are doing.
Maribel L.: First sonogram of my little bean, who we then lost. Completely solidified when I saw my 26 weeker grow in an incubator. I saw his eyelashes grow out during his stay. You can’t convince me that is NOT a person in the womb, no matter the gestational age.
Tess S.: Basically realizing that it was inconsistent to support abortion being legal only in the first trimester if abortion needs to be available because of bodily autonomy. I never agreed with late-term abortion but I thought it should be legal in the first trimester. Eventually I came to realize that the only really consistent positions to take was either the pro-life position or allow abortion basically up until birth. I thought about how generally speaking we see humans as valuable because of what they are, regardless of ability or age.
Chad K.: Science made me change my mind.
KC K.: Hearing conversion stories from former abortionists, especially Dr. Bernard Nathanson.
Lynn W.: Found out how MANY abortions were done, and then decided one was too many, after befriending numerous women who experienced long-lasting trauma from their abortions.
William A.: Their rhetoric is convincing if you don’t think about it. The “abortions will still happen even if you make them illegal” was convincing to me for a long time till I realized if we apply that logic equally nothing may as well be illegal.
Stefan S.: I used to say to myself “I personally would never want anyone I’m with to have an abortion, but everyone else has that choice.” But I slowly came to the realization that morality can’t be fluid. It’s a fixed idea. Therefore if I believed it was wrong for myself, it must be wrong for everyone. Arrogant, I know, but that was really only the first step.
Elise M.: I used to be pro-choice in that I saw abortion as killing, but I reasoned that sometimes killing is justified (like in self-defense). Then, once I explored the actual reasons that someone would need to end a pregnancy in order to save their life, I quickly realized that abortion was never medically necessary. In a medical emergency, it’s far quicker to deliver a baby via c-section, than to perform a late-term abortion. I also learned that most life-threatening medical complications in pregnancy occur later on, when an abortion is actually full-on labor and delivery of a dead baby. This completely changed my mind and made me see that abortion was never necessary. Even if the baby would certainly die if delivered early, it’s still acceptable if the life of the mom is at stake. What’s not acceptable is killing the baby first and then delivering it. What nonsense.
Lisa D.: When safe, legal, and rare became commonplace, desirable, and celebrated.
Robert W.: Becoming a mortician. When you deal with death every day you realize how valuable all lives are, at every stage of development.
Peggy A.: The total subjectivity and intellectual dissonance of – if the baby is wanted it’s tragic if there’s miscarriage but if the pregnancy is unplanned … completely ok and even celebrated to end the baby’s life. My own deep grief – when I couldn’t even describe it as that – testified to the inherent worth of my child’s life.