A young woman, let’s call her Susie, was referred to us by a family member. After Susie’s abortion she experienced bouts of sleeplessness, crying, extreme anger, and had threatened suicide. Susie sought help from professional counselors but was unable to schedule an appointment in a timely manner. Her family member knew she needed immediate intervention and found our abortion recovery program online. Our Healing Services Team met and talked with both Susie and her family member to connect Susie with the PDHC Abortion Recovery (aR) Programs.
Susie said she had been happy about the pregnancy and shared the news with her family, friends, and co-workers. She was shocked when her boyfriend balked at the idea of having a child and insisted that she abort. She had never given a great deal of thought to having children, but assumed that if it happened, they would both be excited. Instead, her boyfriend stated he wasn’t interested in children but had other life goals. This led to escalating arguments. Susie was emotionally and economically dependent on the relationship and eventually gave in to the boyfriend’s wishes. She immediately regretted her decision.
After the abortion, Susie continued her relationship with the boyfriend, but the reality of what she had done and her misjudgment of him began to haunt her and led to the emotional state her family member was witnessing.
Susie understood that we who work in abortion recovery are also post-abortive. She opened up right away and, amid her tears and trembling, was eager to talk about her situation.
Our time together was a condensed example of each of the steps of the L.O.V.E. Approach, all in one session. I “L”istened as Susie talked about her feeling that she was getting worse--as she would still be pregnant and was fixated on her due date. The regret she felt, her anger at her boyfriend, and another significant loss—the death of a beloved family member, were all contributing to her emotional distress. She also felt triggered by the fact that several people in her life were pregnant.
As she talked about her desire to continue her education, it was a perfect time to talk about “O”pening “O”ptions in terms of her career and the relationship. For the first time, Susie concentrated on her hopes and dreams.
“V"ision and “V”alues became a natural part of the conversation. Susie expressed fear at the idea of starting over with a new relationship, but she knew that she and her boyfriend did not share the same priorities in life and that she now knew she wanted a family with children. She also recognized her abortion went against her core beliefs, beliefs the boyfriend did not share.
We extended her an invitation to attend a monthly drop-in aR Connection Meeting, and to join an abortion recovery healing group. Just knowing that we were here for her and that she would be in a group in a short period of time empowered Susie and gave her hope. She was also encouraged to journal about her relationship and her vision for her future. She was reminded that God loves her and forgives her.
About three weeks into our group, Susie announced that continuing the relationship with her boyfriend was not the best decision for her and that she was making decisions that were much healthier for her life.
Susie shared, “The support has been more helpful than I thought possible. I feel free and closer to God than ever before.” She went on further to write, “I will never be able to find the words to tell you how thankful I am for meeting you guys this year. You have restored my faith in God and in myself, something I never thought possible a few months ago. I am so appreciative of PDHC. I can’t wait to continue this healing journey.”
There is an exciting postscript to this story. A few weeks ago, Susie invited us to attend her baptism, where we met her family who referred her to us. We are happy to report that Susie is continuing on the pathway to healing and a free and transformed life in Christ.