It’s scary to talk about an abortion experience with others. What if they don’t understand?
What if they condemn you, withdraw from you, or start acting weird whenever you’re around?
These are all reasonable fears. We have them because it is important for all of us to see and feel that people around us care about us, love us, and understand us. So we often hide the things about ourselves that we fear will drive people away. We put up a defensive wall, a fake persona, to protect us from the negative judgments of others.
That may be all right for short periods of time, but if that defensive wall becomes a permanent part of ourselves, it is no longer just a defense; it is a prison. It is a prison that keeps people from really knowing us. It is a prison that keeps us from fully experiencing the love and compassion of people who are willing to understand our abortion experience.
To break out of this prison of fear, grief, and isolation, it is essential that you or your loved ones talk with someone who understands what it is like. It may be especially helpful to talk with someone who has gone through the healing process themselves. Their enthusiasm can energize you by giving you a foretaste of the great joy of release that will soon be yours.
This is why post-abortion counseling programs and peer-support groups are so helpful. The people you will talk to have heard it all. Many, if not most, have been there themselves.
This is why they have a great yearning in their hearts to help you and your loved ones. They know about your fears. But they also know about the great joy of having this secret weight lifted off your back.
Know that post-abortion healing is a process. It takes time. Often you will make tremendous progress in just a short time, then plateau for a while, and then complete the process in a few more smaller steps. But the involvement of others is always essential to that process.
For example, Kathy Williams was able to “stuff” the grief of her abortion away for many years. The birth of her second child, however, dredged up an enormous amount of repressed grief, regret, and guilt. After one great episode of tears, she cried out to God and experienced a great sense of mercy and forgiveness.
Kathy Williams was able to “stuff” the grief of her abortion away for many years. The birth of her second child, however, dredged up an enormous amount of repressed grief, regret, and guilt. After one great episode of tears, she cried out to God and experienced a great sense of mercy and forgiveness.
Years later, Kathy decided to volunteer at a crisis pregnancy center. The director asked her to participate in the center’s post-abortion healing program first. Kathy felt it was unnecessary because she had already been spiritually healed, but finally she agreed.
pregnancy center. The director asked her to participate in the center’s post-abortion healing program first. Kathy felt it was unnecessary because she had already been spiritually healed, but finally she agreed.
Through the class, Kathy found healing for many areas of her life where her abortion was still causing problems. She worked through issues of forgiveness and isolation. Most of all, she felt a tremendous experience of healing by becoming involved in “a small, intimate group, made up of abortion victims like myself.”
“I could be confident of their acceptance of me,” Kathy said. “[I learned] that while it takes the blood of Jesus to deliver us from guilt, it takes the acceptance of others to deliver us from shame.”
The acceptance of others will deliver you from shame, isolation, and loneliness, too. The place to begin is with post-abortion ministries that understand exactly what you have been through and know how you can recover the full sense of freedom and joy in your life that you desire.
Don’t go it alone. There are so many who want to help you along the journey to healing. They’ve been there before you. And someday you yourself may be able to help others along the same path.
Help is there for all who need it. You only need to accept it.
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