The Pain of Celebrating Mother's DayBy Annie Banno
On Mother’s Day Weekend this year [Ed.Note: this is an archived column from 2003], something is going to happen that has never happened before. And it will happen in Hartford, CT, on the North Steps of the Capitol Building. Silent No More Connecticut will hold the first of its Mother’s Day Press Conferences. Women who have had abortions and regret them will speak up publicly to share their personal stories and hold signs saying, “I Regret My Abortion.”
But we will do more than that. Each woman will commemorate her lost child in a brief memorial by announcing her aborted child’s name and placing a single red rose for each child in a decorated basket at the press conference.
You see, I became a mother for the first time — really — in February 1979. I should have first celebrated Mother’s Day that year. Unfortunately for me, I made the wrong “choice,” and by Mother’s Day, I was no longer pregnant with my baby girl.
The Elliot Institute surveyed numerous medical studies, and in applying these studies’ conclusions, it is probably safe to say that more than 17 million American women silently suffer each Mother’s Day because of their abortions. Or they are in complete denial about them.
All women in our region who regret their abortions are invited to attend this Mother’s Day Press Conference, even just to stand anonymously in the attending audience. Next year, there will be others like this, all around the nation.
I don’t know how many women will stand with me on Friday, May 9, 2003, from 10 a.m. – 12 noon. If I am the only one, I will still go. I will say to the media (if they show) that the reason is that millions of American women who have had abortions cannot acknowledge their pain. If a post-abortive woman tells anyone, some pro-life people — even some of the ones who stand outside the abortion clinic next to me, the ones with bullhorns — will condemn her. And the pro-abortion people will call her crazy for feeling regret! They’ll say she’s “unstable” and it’s all in her head! So she feels she can’t win. Both sides make it impossible for her to seek healing from her regret and pain. That’s why so many women don’t talk about their regret. It seems that no one makes it easy.
Still others are convinced that they are the only ones hurting. But the truth is that everywhere we go, everywhere we look, even when female phone installers come to our home offices and see the abortion recovery literature strewn on our desks, women cannot help but pour out their grief and their regret.
The Silent No More campaign tells the truth about abortion’s emotional, spiritual and physical consequences and reaches out to women suffering from their abortion experience.
Pass the word. If you or someone you know would like to share in the rose basket memorial ceremony, please let us know so we can be sure to have enough roses on hand.
The more that women talk openly about their grief, regrets and hurts surrounding their abortions, the more other women will have the courage to speak up and find the healing they deserve.
This was the fourth in the column series, originally appearing on APR. 29, 2003 for
© Copyright 2003 Annie Banno
Since the columns are no longer up on the CE website,
I'm reposting them here, updating as needed. Though dated, I hope and pray there is much that still can be of some help.