an After abortion

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Friday, September 2, 2005

Jeri, a young mystery writer and a blogger, writes about the lingering impact of abortion:

As the Providence of God would have it, I have been working on a story, SHADOW SOLDIERS, that includes an atheist main character, a woman, who is highly ethical but completely convinced that there is no God. Eventually, I decided that I wanted to give her an Achilles Heel, a sticking pain that is a demonstration to her that she is weak and in desperate need of God. So I decided to include an abortion in her past. And now, even years later, when ever she is tired, or emotional, or vulnerable, or afraid, she feels a "mystery pain" inside, a sense of having a scrape inside her, as though she is still feeling the final effects of the abortion she had years before.

Of course, this story is a forensic mystery. Carolne Drake's sorrowful secret is simply one aspect of a character who's primary purpose is to solve a mystery. The book I am writing is intended to be better than most Christian fiction that's out there, but it's not a deeply philosophical book. It's a mystery-adventure. The characters must be complex and believable, but the novel is mostly about the action and mystery.

All the same, after I did cursory research on the topic and included this quirk into her personality, I came into internet contact with a young woman who wrote an account of her own abortion a few years ago.

It was heart breaking. It changed her life. In fact, she'll date her life from it. (She already does.) Very few medical or psychiatric journals are willing to treat post-abortion trauma as a clinically-defined syndrome, but it is. (Indeed, it is documented enough that their reticence appears to be politically, rather than scientifically, motivated.

I did dig up some references to send to the young woman to help her make contact with other women who have been through this. It's in reading their sites that I am so troubled and amazed. One woman, in her grief and guilt, kept her bloody socks from the abortion. Actually, she buried them with a pin of a stork carrying a baby, andn then had to go dig them up in the middle of the night because she couldn't let them go. It is typical for women to preserve sad momentos, to observe the anniversary date of the abortion, to express grief silently, in their own little world, about the sin that none dare to name out loud, even if it's something they bitterly regret and would certainly never advocate.

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