When I see pro-abortion marches, I see decades of pain and injury still bleeding and crying out for healing

By Olivia Gans Turner

Olivia Gans Turner, President Virginia Society for Human Life (VSHL)

Mrs. Turner is the founder and director of American Victims of Abortion. She had an abortion herself in 1981. 

Another weekend and another so-called “Women’s March” has come and gone. The “Women’s March” was predictably loud and angry, and it was touted as representing the voices of American women who supposedly are demanding that abortion be kept legal under any circumstance and at any time. 

It gathered far more attention than the hundreds of thousands who come to Washington for the March for Life—an event that has taken place every year since 1974!  

This March also ignore someone else: the baby in the womb.

Lost in the maze of favorable media attention was be a sad truth: That many of those in attendance will very probably have had abortions themselves or assisted others to get them. 

Abortion has wounded every family in America. It is the reason the shouting is so loud about new pro-life laws passed across America that are now winding their way up to the Supreme Court. The sad reality is that for far too many, the idea that there may come a day when Roe v. Wade falls in the trash can of history—like Dred Scott and Brown v. Board of Education—is terrifying. But one day, injustices will begin to be recognized and remedied, but not without a reckoning for the dreadful damage it has done to finish that has been done. 

It has been argued by abortion advocates these past four decades that abortion is a sad but “necessary” evil. More recently, it has been promoted as “health care” for women and a part of learning to make “mature” decisions for oneself. 

All part of the cruel mythology that surrounds the tragedy of every abortion. That every abortion does stop the beating heart of a helpless unborn child.

Abortion also requires that the women who have had them spend countless years of their lives rationalizing the decision that they will never forget, that changed who they are forever. 

Most will remain silent because the secret is their own and is too hard to reflect on. 

For others, such as this new wave of mothers of children lost to the violence and lies demonstrates, the shouting is an attempt to voice the pain and demand understanding of why they did it. Abortion was the answer to the “problem” they had. 

Told that being pregnant was the problem and only offered abortion as the answer, these mourning mothers are still demanding that someone understand them and the fears they still carry from that time in their lives. What often follows is years of justification for an act that never solved our problem– but we were told it was the smart thing to do.

Now, generations of women have been raised to believe pregnancy is the problem and abortion is the answer. They have no idea of how fabulously pro-life pregnancy centers have stepped up to offer better answers. They/we have just continued to drink the Kool-Aid sold by the abortion industry.

When I see these marches, I see decades of pain and injury still bleeding and crying out. Our best response to these dramatic activities is to pray or hold a hopeful thought that these damaged women will encounter help to confront painful hurts and realize that our babies’ deaths did nothing but continue the oppression of women.

It was hugely frustrating for pro-life people to see coverage of this March. But I urge you to see it from a different angle. Rather than being angry at these hardened hearts and wounded lives– waving angry signs and shouting out their pain–stop and pray or think for a moment of the way the abortion industry has betrayed women as well as their children. 

My hope is that more pro-life people come to realize that abortion alters the thinking of those of us who’ve had them. 

Every mother who has had an abortion has a story. Women who are told the best answer our society has for them is to pay someone to kill their baby in the womb, teenagers who face embarrassed parents who want to believe abortion is easy to forget, unsupportive men who don’t want the responsibility of fatherhood, and women and girls who have told their baby is the one who will be born with major health problems. After we convince ourselves that the abortion is the answer, it hurts too much to face the facts—that our lives remain the same afterwards only without that child. 

Recently, I read the comments of actress Uma Thurman about the Texas law. It was, in fact, more painful than angry. My heart broke as every word of her own story unfolded in the article. 

Pregnant as a young woman by an older man while working abroad, she turned to her parents who decided not to support her to have the baby but instead urged her to abort their grandchild. To this day, she acknowledges the pain she carries from that experience and her loss but her experience sounds like that of a million other women in America who are still trying to make it all make sense. 

Despite the harsh reality that those who were supposed to love or support them pushed them towards abortion; that “doctors” and their staffs lied to them about the pain or future problems; and that abortion was supposed to be easy to forget. 

We must do a better job of addressing the needs pregnant women face every day that makes it possible for them to believe that abortions are essential to their survival. 

A huge thank you, to the entire pro-life pregnancy network all over America, but we need more action in laws, in churches, in medical circles, and in the media. Abortion always has two victims: the mother who has been told the lies of the abortion industry and her unborn baby who dies at the hands of the abortionist. 

The pro-life movement needs to see both victims and recognize who causes the problem. The abortion industry is the only winner–every time an abortion occurs–not the mothers and definitely not their innocent children.

I weep for the generations of women in America who now think that we can’t survive or follow our dreams if we get pregnant unexpectedly. The great open wound that abortion has caused in our society was on display this weekend. How we respond will determine when the healing can begin.

The words of Pulitzer Prize winning poet Gwendolyn Brooks in her moving poem, “The Mother” captures what so many women who march and those who mourn all feel:

“Abortions will not let you forget.

“You remember the children you got that you did not get.”