Their Deepest Wound: An Analysis

By David Reardon

Lorena Bobbitt’s abortion was unwanted. It violated her moral beliefs and signified the destruction of her dream to have a family just like the one in which she had grown up. It was an attack on her self-identity and her maternal self.

By understanding how her abortion traumatized Lorena, we can understand why she mutilated John in the way she did. From this perspective, it can be seen that everything Lorena did that night had great significance, at least on a subconscious level.

Because the effects of the abortion on Lorena and John were multidimensional, the following discussion will look at the incidents of that night from several different angles.

The Anniversary Reaction

The most obvious connection between the abortion and the cutting incident is one of time; the attack occurred almost exactly three years to the day after the unwanted abortion. This is highly significant. Studies at both the Medical College of Ohio and the Elliot Institute, have found that between 30 and 50 percent of women who suffer from post-abortion psychological disorders experience increased physical or emotional reactions on the anniversary dates of the abortion or due date of the child.1

Anniversary reactions often include major depression, anxiety, headaches, abdominal cramping, eating irregularities, sleeping difficulties, gastrointestinal symptoms, or complaints relevant to the reproductive system. The symptoms which Lorena reported to Dr. Inman on June 18th clearly follow the classic pattern reported for post-abortion anniversary reactions. The emotional stress associated with this anniversary reaction increased the risk that Lorena would experience a “mental snap” at this time.

It is also likely that Lorena experienced symptoms of an anniversary reaction in June of 1991 and 1992. While symptoms at these times were not specifically discussed in the testimony, we do know that in June of 1991 Lorena had a pregnant customer at her salon. She recalled that seeing this woman touched her deeply. Lorena started telling the woman how happy she was for her that she would be having a baby. She then began explaining to her how sad she was in her marriage and how her husband would beat her. The only testimony regarding specific events of June 1992, when John was gone, is the claim of John’s family members who testified that Lorena frequently called him begging him to return.

Replacing the Wanted Child

It is very common for women who have had an abortion to develop an intense desire to replace their lost child by becoming pregnant again. As many as 13 percent becoming pregnant again within twelve months.2 This desire for a replacement pregnancy often includes a profound need to become pregnant by the same man. He alone can offer her an “exact duplicate” of the aborted child. The woman may even make efforts to duplicate other circumstances connected with the prior pregnancy, such as becoming pregnant around the same season of the year.

It is clear from the testimony that Lorena desperately wanted to have children. She saw children as integral to the purpose of marriage and essential to her fulfillment as a woman. Thus, after their reconciliation, when they were moving into their new apartment in the spring of 1993, Lorena had renewed hopes that she could rebuild her dream. It would be “fitting” for her to become pregnant again that spring.

But instead, only a month after moving to the new apartment, John announced that he was letting Robbie move in with them. She saw this as proof that nothing would change. She decided she would have to divorce John, either because she couldn’t go on with him, or because she hoped it would, in the end, change him.

This decision to divorce John may have offered Lorena some hope for escaping the endless cycles of violence, but it may also have increased her anxiety about never being able to replace her aborted child with a sibling. The thought of leaving John forever was forcing her to confront the finality of her abortion.

This desire for a replacement child, combined with her belief that divorce was wrong, helps to explain why Lorena did not leave John sooner. It may also explain why she delayed the process of moving out until after Robbie had actually moved in.

With regard to this issue of desiring children, it is noteworthy that Lorena told Dr. Feister she had a great fear that she would never have children. Such a fear is not normal for a 21-year-old woman. It makes sense only in the context of a common fear of women who have had abortions; they fear God will punish them by depriving them of children, or that He may even harm the children who have already been born.

The Sexual Amputee

Abortion has a dramatic impact on a woman’s view of her sexual and maternal self. Every woman who has had an abortion has experienced the extremes of both a life creating process and a life destroying process–all within the confines of her own body. In many cases, this unnatural death experience may become psychologically connected with the woman’s view of sexual intercourse or her own sexuality. This connection may produce either a fear or an obsession with her sexuality–or both.

After the abortion, Lorena became sexually cold toward John. “I didn’t want to sleep with him. I didn’t want to see him.” Her frigidity dramatically aggravated marital tensions, especially since John, by all accounts, was not a very sensitive lover. His approach toward sex, by his own description, excluded foreplay and was focused on satisfying his immediate urges. Sensitivity and open communications were not his strong suits.

When Lorena became sexually withdrawn, John became frustrated and demanding. If he had any clue as to why Lorena was withdrawn, he chose to ignore it. The suspicion that she was withdrawn because of the abortion may even have aggravated his guilt and anger. In any event, Lorena’s testimony indicates that the first incidents of forced sex and sodomy occurred shortly after the abortion.

This experience of frigidity after an abortion is a common problem. According to two studies, sexual coldness was expressed by 33 percent of aborted women within nine months after their abortions, and an additional 14 percent developed sexual coldness four to five years later.3 The aversion to sexual intercourse can occur because of antagonism toward the male, or men in general. Or it may arise out of a fear that if the woman becomes pregnant again she will need to have another abortion. Rather than risk another abortion, she avoids sex.

Guilt over a prior abortion can also become an impediment to subsequent sexual relations. For some women, acts of intercourse serve as a connector to repressed guilt over a prior abortion. Intercourse is associated with pregnancy which is associated to abortion which is associated to guilt. This linkage to guilt creates an aversion to sexual intercourse because it makes her feel “dirty” or unpleasant in some other way.

Dr. Victor Calef has concluded that some women may experience a husband’s request or permission for an abortion, as a rejection of her sexuality.4 Similarly, psychiatrist Theodor Reik has suggested that the psycho-sexual trauma of abortion has an unconscious meaning comparable to that of castration for a male.5 The experience of a woman who called the Pregnancy Aftermath Hotline in Milwaukee confirms these clinical assessments. This woman told the hotline counselor that she felt “castrated” by her abortion; she felt as though she were a sexual “amputee.”

It takes no leap of imagination to see how a woman, such as Lorena, who on an unconscious level felt that she had been sexually mutilated by her abortion, would in moment of bitter passion attempt to “castrate” her husband. Lorena’s subconscious decision to limit her attack to his penis, I would suggest, may have reflected an “eye for an eye” form of justice. He had robbed her of her fertility; she robbed him of his.

The Phallic Symbol and the Game Boy

On the night of the cutting, Lorena fled with the penis still in her hand. Why? Dr. Feister suggested that since John was attacking her with his penis, Lorena, on a subconscious level, was merely taking away her attacker’s weapon. There may be some validity to this view, but it is not convincing because there is no reason to carry off a disabled weapon.

The “penis as weapon” theory is also defective because Lorena did not have strictly negative emotions toward it. The testimony shows that Lorena clearly wanted true intimacy with John, not just rapid-fire intercourse. She also wanted to become pregnant again by John. At the same time, she felt deeply violated whenever John forced himself upon her, and she felt especially degraded by and fearful of his attempts at anal intercourse.

This mix of emotions has all the makings of an approach-avoidance conflict. She feared his penis because of the pain and abuse she had suffered, but she also desired its life-giving ability. Thus, while Lorena may have cut it off because it was a “weapon,” she took it with her because it was a phallic symbol. It symbolized her desire to be pregnant. On another level, it may have even represented “her baby.”

This theory is supported by perhaps her most bizarre act that night. When Lorena ran from the house, in what was certainly a hysterical panic, she paused only long enough to grab two things. First, her car keys, which makes sense. They were needed to complete her escape. Second, she grabbed up Robbie’s Game Boy, a hand-held video game. Why?

Remember that (1) Lorena was experiencing an anniversary reaction to her abortion, (2) she was internally grieving over the fact that she would never be able to replace her aborted child because she was going to divorce John, (3) she had just experienced flashbacks to the abortion when picking up the knife, and (4) she was shocked and confused about everything that had just happened.

With these facts in mind, I would suggest that as Lorena was just reflexively grabbing up symbols of her aborted, wanted child. In her hands she clutched both a phallic symbol and a child’s toy, which even by its very name–Game Boy–symbolized the missing “Little Boy” she so desperately wanted. When fleeing the house, then, she was, on some subconscious level, simply trying to take “her baby” with her.

Loss of Maternity, Loss of Purity

Lorena was raised in an ardently Catholic culture. The testimony suggests that Lorena’s Catholic faith was not of paramount importance in her life: she was not married in the Catholic Church, attended a non-Catholic church with John, used birth control pills during their first year of marriage, and probably used some form of artificial birth control after the abortion. Nonetheless, her Catholic heritage clearly had a formative influence upon her and profoundly affected her views of marriage, divorce, and abortion.

An understanding of this Catholic heritage adds an additional insight as to why Lorena felt so totally degraded by her husband. In brief, John robbed Lorena of both her maternity (through a coerced abortion) and her purity (through forced sex and sodomy).

To grasp the importance of this two pronged attack on her identity, one must understand that in the traditional Catholic culture both virginity (purity) and maternity are highly valued. They are the essence of womanly virtues. One of the reasons the Virgin Mother is so highly esteemed by Catholics is that she retains the dignity of Virginity while also attaining the honor of Maternity. Every Catholic girl is encouraged to imitate the Virgin Mother in at least one of these ways.

Traditionally, then, when a Catholic woman gives the gift of her virginity to her husband (which Lorena did) it is with the anticipation that her husband will in turn bless her with the gift of maternity. Thus, in marriage, the good Catholic girl sees herself as moving from one pedestal of honor, for virgins, to another pedestal, for mothers.

In addition, according to this Catholic view, a faithful wife is still pure, though no longer virgin, and should be treated with treated with dignity, respect, and love by her husband. The wife’s submissiveness to her husband is protected by the just demand that he love her and treat her as he would his own body (Eph 5:28). When this ideal of mutual respect, love, and service does not occur, both husband and wife are called upon to accept suffering in imitation of our Lord’s own uncomplaining passion. By patient suffering, they may hope to reform and save both themselves and their spouse.

It is quite possible, then, that because of her devotion to the permanence of marriage, Lorena may have been able and willing to tolerate John’s verbal and physical abuse, if at least she had been allowed the dignity of being a mother. Moreover, in addition to being robbed of her maternity, she had also been subjected to unnatural and impure sexual acts which, she may have felt, robbed her of her purity. Thus, Lorena may have felt stripped of everything which defined her womanhood–both her maternity and her purity.

Approach or Avoid?

Many aspects of Lorena’s testimony reflect that she was frequently caught up in approach-avoidance conflicts. She felt safer with Robbie in the apartment, but she did not want Robbie to live with them. She wanted to be pregnant, but she feared that if she became pregnant John would make her have another abortion. She wanted emotional intimacy with John, but she did not want John’s barbaric approach to intercourse.

I believe that many of the statements which Lorena made to the police can only be understood in the context of this approach-avoidance conflict she had with regard to sexual intimacy with John. For example, when telling the investigator that John had forced her to have sex on their anniversary, Lorena complained that John “just only wanted to have sex because he–he wanted his own satisfaction and that’s not fair. Sex should be mutual….” And even on the night of the cutting incident, she explained that when he took her underpants he left her top on, complaining, “If he wanted to make love, he should have asked me or took, you know, everything off.”

These are not the words of a wife who is totally opposed to intercourse with her husband. They are the words of a woman who wants her husband to love her, not use her. They reflect her anger and frustration over the fact that he would seek to satisfy himself without regard to her emotional needs–her desire to mend their hurts and to replace their lost child.

All Mixed Up

Lorena also told police that when she returned to the bedroom, knife in hand, she tried to talk to John. “Then he said he doesn’t care about my feelings. He did say that and I ask him if he had orgasm inside me, ’cause it hurt me when he made me do that before.”

What is she referring to that happened “before?” Is she complaining that his orgasms physically hurt her? No, because she doesn’t even know if he had one. If they were normally hurtful, and she felt no pain, she just would have assumed that he did not have one. Instead, she is demanding to know if he had one. Why? Because an orgasm would mean sperm, which she connected to pregnancy, which (especially on this anniversary of the abortion and after flashbacks to the abortion in the kitchen) she connected to her abortion “’cause it hurt me when he made me do that before.” Her question to John, then, may have have been reflecting both her pain about the prior abortion and her fear that if she became pregnant again John would force her to abort again.

Remember, Lorena’s mind was flooded with a mix of emotions and memories. In trying to articulate her thoughts to the police, and at the same time trying to conceal the source of her shame, she may have been mixing into the word “orgasm” the concept of becoming pregnant. Such a confusion over word choices would also be aggravated by the fact that she had only been speaking English for a few years.

If there was such a mixing of meanings, the following statement four hours after the cutting incident also becomes more clear. “He always have orgasms and he doesn’t wait for me to have–to have orgasm. He’s selfish. I don’t think it’s fair.” In translation, this may have meant that John was brutishly demanding his own sexual satisfaction, and she was being denied not only sexual intimacy but also her right to have the child created by his orgasm, which was not “fair.”

Finally, it is worth noting that when Lorena described the moments before she picked up the knife to Dr. Feister, she said, “I felt that the whole world was in my body.” Is it not likely that in choosing to describe the magnitude of her feelings with the phrase “the whole world was in my body” Lorena was once again reflecting feelings associated to her abortion flashbacks? Is it not likely that she was reaching to describe the enormity of her body’s ability to give life and the enormity of what her body was missing. A child, a family, her dreams–her “whole world”–all of these had both lived and died “in my body?” In those few moments, her body, perhaps her uterus in particular, was the focal point of all her emotions.

The Rape and Abortion Link

There are numerous examples of women who describe that their abortions felt like a degrading form of medical rape.6 Indeed, abortion even resembles rape in that it involves the painful examination of a woman’s sexual organs by a masked stranger who is invading a woman’s sexual organs.

For many women this experiential association between abortion and sexual assault is very strong. Both abortion and rape can cause feelings of guilt, depression, resentment of men, lowered self-esteem, and feelings of being “dirty.” Both feel powerless, and no longer in control of their bodies.

Because of this strong experiential connection, women who have been victims of sexual assault are at much higher risk of suffering severe post-abortion trauma. The abortion aggravates and worsens prior psychological burdens.

The converse is also true. The sexual assault of a woman who previously had a traumatic abortion experience may trigger the onslaught of unresolved abortion issues which become mixed in with her feelings regarding the assault.

In trauma theory, psychologists describe these associations as “connectors.” Connectors are anything which prompt a mental connection back to the traumatic event. They can be a sight, a sound, a smell, a person, or a time. For example, anniversary reactions occur because the anniversary date, month, or season, serves as a connector.

Thus, when John forced himself on Lorena that night, Lorena experienced yet another connector back to her abortion. She felt out of control, forced to satisfy John’s selfishness without regard for what she really wanted. Though the forensic evidence was inconclusive as to whether or not John actually completed the sex act, that issue is really irrelevant. Whether he climbed on her for only a few minutes before falling back to sleep, or whether he brutally raped her for an hour, in either event Lorena would have felt used, violated, and out of control–just as she did when she had the abortion.

PAS, PTSD, and Balloons

Many therapists use the term post-abortion syndrome (PAS) as a designation for PTSD in cases where an abortion is the underlying trauma. But because of the political nature of abortion, most psychiatric associations and many therapists refuse to entertain the idea that abortion can be traumatic. Nonetheless, the clinical experience of hundreds of therapists confirms that it can be. Furthermore, a study by Catherine Barnard of women who had previously had abortions at a Boston clinic three to five years earlier found that 19 percent suffered from diagnosable post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).7 Approximately half had many, but not all, symptoms of PTSD, and 20 to 40 percent showed moderate to high levels of stress and avoidance behavior relative to their abortion experiences. A recent study by David Hanley, et al., of 105 women in outpatient mental health care similarly found that abortion related distress fell within the “classic PTSD symptoms of intrusion, avoidance, and hyperarousal and that these symptoms can be present many years after the abortion.”8

During Lorena’s trial, all the testifying psychiatrists agreed that Lorena was suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). While none of them were willing to specify any particular traumatic event which initiated the symptoms of PTSD, the evidence shows it was only after the abortion that Lorena experienced depression, guilt, suicidal tendencies, and sexual abuse.

By way of an analogy, PTSD can be likened to air filled balloon. The precipitating trauma creates a psychic pressure, inside this mental balloon, which wants to break out. As long as the balloon is intact, the pressure can be kept inside. But it takes a lot of energy, expended in the form of denial, repression, and avoidance behaviors, to hold the pressure back. Inevitably, there are leaks which cause intrusive memories, obsessive behavior, or reenactment. These leaks demand the expenditure of more energy. If the pressures which are bound inside that mental balloon are never released in a controlled fashion, such as in therapy, they will continue to cause ongoing problems as more leaks develop, are patched, then develop again. Or worse, the pressure may eventually result in a violent explosion.

To belabor the analogy, three things can happen which will result in an explosion–the rubber can begin to degrade and crack, the pressure inside can build up because of outside heat, or a bump against a sharp edge or pin can break the rubber. Actually, all three of these can happen at the same time. For example, only the slightest bump can break a balloon if it is overinflated and the rubber is old and petrified. I would suggest that all three of these stresses factors were at play the night of the mutilation.

First, Lorena’s “trauma balloon” was already overinflated by the heat of compounding circumstances: (1) she was having an anniversary reaction to the abortion, (2) Robbie’s presence was destroying her plan to rebuild their marriage, and (3) she was preparing to divorce John, which meant she would never have her replacement child.

Second, the “rubber balloon” containing these pressures was worn thin. Her coping skills had become frayed by three years of constant stress and fighting with John. She was exhausted and depressed.

Third, John had once again forced to do what he wanted without regard for her own desires. It hurt, just as the abortion had hurt. It was unfair, just as the abortion was unfair. He was verbally insulting her, just as he had insulted her when she announced her pregnancy, just as he had insulted her when she had the abortion.

And the balloon broke.

The Fragmented Self

Psychiatrist Joel Brinde, a well-known expert in the field of PTSD and PAS, believes many victims of trauma suffer from the fragmentation of the “self.” This fragmentation of the personality can occur when feelings of self-blame and shame are simply overwhelming. In words that could easily serve as a profile for Lorena, he writes:

A [trauma] victim feels violated, abandoned, betrayed, ashamed and fragmented…. The victim feels fragmentation (“not together” “feeling empty inside”), has a sense of inner deadness, or deep internal shame…. A victim experiences loss of innocence, physical well-being, and sense of ideals….When a victim feels betrayed by someone who should have been supportive, he or she feels shamed and distrust–and erects a “wall” around his or her feelings. Internal shame alters the victim’s self-concept and damages self-esteem, self-integrity, personality, and the quality of interpersonal relationships. It causes the victim to become depressed, unstable, emotionally fragile, distrustful….9

It is noteworthy that Lorena told Dr. Feister that at the time of the cutting, she had “a lot of anger at herself and guilt.” Dr. Feister dismissed the notion that Lorena had any reason to feel guilt or anger at herself. She instead concludes that Lorena was merely turning these emotions back toward herself because she could not express them toward John, her abuser. It is more likely, however, that Lorena truly was angry at herself, because she had given in to the abortion. This was the source of her greatest guilt and all the anger that goes with it. This is what she was having a flashback to; this was the trauma which was causing her anniversary reactions.

When such feelings of shame cause a loss of self-integration, Dr. Brind explains, the “self” can be split into five fragments: Ego, Protector, Child, Victim, and Aggressor.

Such fragmentation predisposes the person to unstable and destructive (sadistic, masochistic, abusive, and battering) relationships…. He or she becomes overprotective or easily angered, causing further victimization behavior…. Survivors who have been so shattered often become victims of repetitive self-destructive symptoms, behaviors, and interactions with individuals, particularly their closest friends and relatives.10

This tendency to “replay” or “reenact” events, emotions, or even psychological conditions, associated with a trauma can be particularly self-destructive. For example, Lorena’s abortion trauma began at the time John rejected the pregnancy and demanded an abortion. This involved a major domestic argument. Subsequent domestic disputes may have been more frequent and emotionally charged because they became entangled with aspects of reenactment.

Over half of women who report post-abortion maladjustments report that “Because of my abortion experience, I underwent a dramatic personality change,” with almost all reporting that the change was for the “worse.”11 Such personality changes often include, as described by Dr. Brind, the “loss of innocence and ideals,” a symptom which is associated with a fractured self.

In Lorena’s case, an example of this loss of ideals may have led to her involvment in stealing. Given her traditional and conservative background, such stealing would seem extremely uncharacteristic. On the other hand, after her abortion, she, like many similar women, probably saw herself as “fallen from grace.” Perhaps even unredeemable. How could stealing compare to having killed one’s own child? A little more shame and guilt would hardly be noticed.

The Abandoned Child

Because the testimony centered on Lorena, most of this analysis has been focused on Lorena’s reaction to the abortion. Though there was very little testimony regarding John’s background, personality, and psychological condition, it is worth reflecting on what little was disclosed in the court transcripts.

When John was five years old, he and his brothers went to live with relatives. According to his aunt and surrogate mother, “we took them out of a bad home life. His mother wasn’t mentally capable of taking care of him.” No mention was made of his father.

It is likely that John had unresolved emotional issues regarding this “abandonment” by his biological parents. It is known that he suffered from a learning disability, attention deficit disorder.

It is also possible that John saw Lorena, who had a maternal, nurturing personality, as a mother-figure. If so, this subconscious association may have transferred to Lorena both his expectations for an idealized mother and his latent resentments toward his real mother.

John clearly expected Lorena to take care of him. He expected her to handle all the household tasks; plus, he wanted her to support him financially. He was also very jealous and possessive of her. Even during the times they were separated, he would try to arouse her jealously by describing his affairs with other women and comparing their lovemaking to hers. Only a week before the cutting incident, he was still trying to impress her by insisting that she should come watch a fight he was going to have with another man in the parking lot.

This jealous possessiveness toward his mother-figure wife may also account for John’s immediate reaction of hostility when he learned Lorena was pregnant. He may have been upset about much more than the financial expenses of having a child. The sudden news of her pregnancy may have aroused a fear that this baby would be competing for his wife-mother’s attentions. He would be redefined as a father-husband rather than the child-husband he wanted to be. John was afraid of being displaced once again.

Lorena describes at least two incidents after the abortion when John kicked her in the stomach. This may have been simply an arbitrary point of attack. But it is also possible that, on some level, John was striking at the source of their pain–Lorena’s womb, whereby their unborn child had entered into and forever changed their lives.

While John Bobbitt did not testify regarding his own feelings subsequent to the abortion, we should not ignore the possibility that he too was experiencing guilt and remorse. Studies show that the vast majority of men do so, and much more so than is generally realized.12 If John was troubled by the abortion, it is likely that he would blame his negative feelings on Lorena. It was her fault that she got pregnant; her fault that she ended up “needing” the abortion; her fault that he felt guilty.

As an “abandoned child” John may also have resented Lorena for having “abandoned” their child. Even though he had insisted on the abortion, he may subsequently have blamed her for not having been strong enough to keep their baby–just as his own mother had not been strong enough to keep him.

In any event, it is probable that John realized, at least on a subconscious level, that the abortion had dramatically changed their relationship. It had made Lorena withdraw from him, emotionally and sexually. It was also a source of many unspoken resentments which was being translated into anger toward one another.

In short, the abortion affected both Lorena and John, both directly and through their interactions. When Lorena had conceded to John’s demand for an abortion, she had done so hoping that an abortion would save their marriage. Instead, the abortion quickly turned their problematic marriage into a full-blown nightmare.

Originally published in The Post-Abortion Review 4(2-3) Spring & Summer 1996. Copyright 1996 Elliot Institute


1. Franco, et. al., “Anniversary Reactions and Due Date Responses Following Abortion,” Psychother Psychosom 52:151-154 (1989); Reardon, “Psychological Reactions Reported After Abortion,” The Post-Abortion Review 2(3):4-8 (Fall 1994).

2. Reardon, “Psychological Reactions,” op.cit.

3. Reardon, Aborted Women, Silent No More (Chicago: Loyola University Press, 1987) 125; Speckhard, Psychosocial Stress Following Abortion (Kansas City: Sheed and Ward, 1987); Belsey, et al., “Predictive Factors in Emotional Response to Abortion: King’s Termination Study-IV,” Soc. Sci. & Med., 11:71-82 (1977).

4. Calef, “The Hostility of Parents to Children: Some Notes on Infertility, Child Abuse, and Abortion,” International Journal of Psychoanalytic Pscyhotherapy 1(1):76 (Feb. 1972).

5. Reik, “Men, Women, and the Unborn Child,” Psychoanalysis, 2:8 (Fall, 1953).

6. Reardon, “Rape, Incest and Abortion: Searching Beyond the Myths,” The Post-Abortion Review, 2(1):1-2 (Winter 1994).

7. Barnard, The Long-Term Psychological Effects of Abortion (Portsmouth, NH: Institute for Pregnancy Loss, 1990).

8. Hanley, et al., “Women Outpatients Reporting Continuing Post-Abortion Distress: A Preliminary Inquiry.” A paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Society for Post-Traumatic Stress Studies, Los Angeles, CA (October 23, 1992).

9. Brind, “Fragmentation of the Personality Associated with Post-Abortion Trauma,” Research Bulletin 8(9):1-8 (July/August 1995).

10. Ibid.

11. Reardon, “Psychological Reactions,” op cit.

12. Skelton, “Many in Survey Who Had Abortion Cite Guilt Feelings,” Los Angeles Times (March 19, 1989) 28; Shostak and McLouth, Men and Abortion: Lessons, Losses and Love (New York: Praeger, 1984); Strahan, “Portraits of Fathers Devastated by the Abortion Experience,” Research Bulletin 7(3):1-8 (Nov/Dec. 1994).

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