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Voices Online Edition
Advent 2000
Volume XV, No. 4

A letter from a sorrowing mother

A few weeks ago we received the following letter from one of our members. With her permission we are printing her letter, and our response, in the hope that it may be helpful to others.

Dear Women for Faith & Family,

I have been receiving your newsletter for some time now and I wanted to let you know that it makes me proud that there are still women like me, women who are Roman Catholics, who believe that what Jesus taught while on this earth is the foundation of our religion. But I also wanted to write as a way of emotional therapy for myself. If you wish, you may print this letter in your next issue of
Voices , as I am writing it hopefully to help a pregnant woman to keep her unborn child or at least give it up for adoption.

In 1989, I was still attending college and, as usual, I went out with friends. This was the night before we were let out for Thanksgiving break. As usual, I got intoxicated and unfortunately "hooked up" with a guy I didn't know. One can guess what happened next. It was only the second time I had let this happen with anyone. The first time I was just as intoxicated. The next day, I woke up, regretful as usual, but I had this feeling I had conceived. I tried to deny it, and I prayed so hard that I wouldn't be pregnant. I went through Thanksgiving and Christmas vacations in denial drinking at college, smoking marijuana but I had to find out.

I went to the college infirmary for a pregnancy test, and, sure enough, it was positive.

I cried so hard because I couldn't go home to my parents and tell them that I was pregnant. After all, I came from a good, Catholic family. My college roommates were, of course, no help. They thought that naturally, an abortion was the only option. I thought up to that point of my life that I was pro-life, but when it came down to it, my cowardice won. Instead of swallowing my pride and taking responsibility, I had an abortion at approximately 12 weeks gestation. I went through the whole ordeal as if it were nothing, but deep down I knew it was the most vile thing anyone could ever do.

Why did I do it? I was too scared to go to my parents.

It is now 2000 and I am married with two children and I am haunted by that horrible day even now. I don't know how I can go on, sometimes because I often wonder what my baby would have looked like and what it could have accomplished, IF I had let it live.

In 1999, my husband and I suffered the loss of our son due to an umbilical cord accident in utero. Ever since that day, I not only mourn for my son's death but I think even more about my aborted baby and think how I could have done something so horrible.

I want to do something to tell every woman out there how horrible it is. An unborn child isn't just a piece of tissue; it is a human being. From the moment of conception, it is a human being with an immortal soul. An immortal soul with the right to be free, happy, and loved.

Despite what I did and what I have gone through, I still have my faith, Thank God. (Thank you for reading this.)

I do have a suggestion. If you want to target a certain age group to educate target the college-age women. So many have faced what I faced and so many more will do what I did, unfortunately. Thanks again, for reading this. (Please with hold my name if you print this.)

A Mother

Dear Mother

Thank you for writing; we are most grateful that you have allowed us to publish your moving account. You are certainly correct about the need to "target" college-age women. Statistics consistently tell us that even when high school girls are pro-life, many, if not most, are pro-choice by the time they've graduated from college.

Your message is a powerful one. Some of the strongest voices in the pro-life movement today are those of women and men who have been involved in abortions.

The following contacts may be helpful to anyone who needs advice and counsel:

Mother Agnes Donovan, S.V.
Sisters of Life
450 West 51 Street
New York, NY 10019
Phone: (212) 397-1396
This order of sisters consistently proclaims the pro-life message.

Olivia Gans
American Victims of Abortion
419 7th Street, N.W., #500
Washington, D.C., 20004
Phone: (202) 626-8800 x 132
Olivia, the founder of this organization, has had an abortion herself, has regretted it deeply, and she is committed to helping women who have suffered an abortion.

Pope John Paul II's encyclical Evangelium Vitae, addressed to women who have had an abortion (§99), may help bring you encouragement.

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