Letting God Use Me
Case Study: “Andrea M.”
I was in nursing school and not doing very well. I had decided to quit school and just work as a nursing assistant when I met the father of my baby. I came from an alcoholic family and I had been doing drugs and drinking, and had become sexually active at age 15. Needless to say, I became pregnant.
I thought the father of my baby cared about me but I was mistaken. When I told him I was pregnant he insisted that I have an abortion and that really, it was my problem, not his. I never told anyone else and was so afraid of the prospect of being in this situation alone and afraid to tell my parents that I blindly got the number for the clinic and made the appointment.
Very little information was given at the clinic. They had a video but I didn’t pay attention to it. I was so numb. Everyone in the room just stared at each other — no one spoke. During the abortion, I felt a lot of physical pain but the emotional pain was worse. I wanted to scream and jump off the table but I kept feeling like it was too late; like I had no choice.
My mother did find out afterwards because I ended up with a uterine infection as a direct result of the abortion. She came to the hospital and somehow she knew what I had done. The worst part was realizing that she would have helped me and would not have disowned me. I felt really bad about myself after that and the drugs and drinking and promiscuity got even worse.
I got pregnant again only a month later (maybe two). I could not believe that I did it again and the thought of having another abortion just about sent me over the edge. Two days after I found out I was pregnant I miscarried — I was hemorrhaging and had to have an emergency D&C.
After that I went back to school to try to forget about everything and get my life straightened out. I met my husband and was married a year later. The only thing I cared about was having a baby and I made sure I got pregnant six months after we were married. My husband did not want to have a baby yet and it took a long time for him to forgive me for manipulating him and making sure I got pregnant.
I thought my son would be the healing for me . . . but he wasn’t. I remember when they brought him to me, I was shocked by my absence of emotion. I felt nothing for him and it scared me so bad. I did not dare tell anyone because I thought they would put me on the psych floor. I tried to fake my way through it but it kept getting worse and I sank into a deep depression. I admitted myself to the psych unit when my son was nine months old.
They drugged me and told me I was manic depressive. I was drugged for a long time and was going to a psychiatrist and psychologist and not one person ever put it together with the abortion. But I didn’t either; I thought it was stress, inability to cope . . . whatever. At that point I stopped taking the meds and went on with life. I would have bad moments, but I asked God to help me and I thought, “Well, you’re just going to have to live with it.” I did the best I could and took good care of my children. I just wish I could have loved them better.
Eight years ago I began going back to church and I met some people who volunteered at the local pregnancy care center. I attended a post-abortion Bible study at the center where I was able to give my abortion experience totally to God and be healed and restored. I now lead the post-abortion ministry at the pregnancy center and watch God heal others. I also get to share my story with women who are in crisis pregnancies and struggling with the whether or not to abort. Almost all the women I have talked with decided to carry to term and all of those who did so are so glad they did.
While we were working on the chapter on forgiveness during the Bible study, I went home and turned on the TV and saw the father of my aborted baby (being arrested, of course). For so long I had been afraid of running into him and I felt so much pain when I thought of him and then . . . it was gone! I felt compassion for him and I knew that I had truly forgiven him — and that I was truly healed.
God continues to heal my heart. After my abortion, I was never able to set foot in a maternity unit in my work. Now I am working in the maternity department and am also a lactation consultant.
What the enemy intended for evil, God has used for good. I wish I could go back, but I can’t . . . The good news is that God can take something awful and use it for His glory. I am not the same, but I am good because of Jesus Christ in my life.
Originally published in The Post-Abortion Review, 11(4), Oct-Dec. 2003.