This is the generation that will abolish abortion

The Day My Mother Told Me About Her Abortion – Examining The Sibling Effect Of Abortion Grief.

Stand True recently published a story about a mom telling her children about her past abortion.  Today we are sharing that story from one of her daughters about the day she found out. Zoe had been working on this story to e-mail to her mom when her mother walked in and told her to clean her room, that is when Zoe clicked send.


We had just dropped my brother and sisters off at Faith Formation. It was a Wednesday evening: January 8, 2014. I would be 13 in just over two weeks.

My mom said, “Zoe, I need to talk to you. Let’s go in the meeting room.” I thought we were going to talk about puberty. I got nervous and fidgety. “Mama,” I kept saying, “I’m not ready for this talk. I don’t want to know about it.” We got to the conference room and Mama sat down. I sat a few chairs away. “Sit here please, Zoe,” she said. “I don’t want to,” I whined. “Zoe,” she said firmly, “sit next to me.” I reluctantly sat down next to her, dreading what she had to say. What she said next would change my life forever. “Zoe,” she said, “in December of 1998, I had an abortion.” I felt like I had been slapped in the face. My whole world was rocked. I wanted to puke, I wanted to cry, I wanted to run away and hide. This amazing person, someone I have looked up to my whole life, my pro-life inspiration, had had an abortion.

I stared at the glassy table where we were sitting. Mama was crying now. She told me how her boyfriend at the time had had a pregnant girlfriend before and how he said that he would “take care of it”. She told me how she had woken up after the abortion and thought how lucky she was to have such a great boyfriend. She told me she had gone crazy in the days after the abortion. She explained everything.

“Do you have any questions?” she asked. “No,” I said. “Do you forgive me?” she asked. “Yes,” I said. “Your big brother’s name is David,” she said. Big brother. For years I had been saying, “I wish I had an older brother or sister!” Now I knew that I had one. We sat in silence for a while. Mama called Fr. Rossi, our parish priest, and he joined us in our little meeting. This was when I learned that a lot of people had heard her testimony before. He told us that now would be a great time to visit Jesus in Adoration. I was so thankful it was Wednesday! We went into Adoration and prayed. We prayed and prayed and prayed. I’m not sure what Mama prayed about, but I prayed for understanding about what had just happened. I prayed a Rosary for David, that he was in Heaven praising God. That night, when everyone was at home, my mom was on her computer. She had just let me read her testimony, which had been published online. Jackson, my 7-year-old brother, saw the picture of Mama holding a sign that said, “I regret my abortion”. “Wait,” he said, “you had an abortion?” Mama’s face paled. “Yes,” she said. Then, returning to his homework, he asked, “How do you spell ‘Guido’?” Mama went along with it. “G-U-I-D-O”, she said. “I’m done with my homework!” Jack said, and he rushed upstairs. Later that night, Lily and Bella, my two sisters, were downstairs. Jack came downstairs and said, “Hey! Did you guys know Mama had an abortion?” “No she didn’t,” Lily said, “she just got her tubes tied!” She turned to Mama. “Wait,” she said slowly, “did you have an abortion?” Mama then started to have the same conversation with them she had had with me earlier. Jack started crying and ran upstairs. Lily and Bella were tearing up, too, but they listened to Mama’s story. I followed Jackson upstairs. I found him in bed, his head buried in his pillows, crying. I sat next to him, held him, tried to comfort him. Mama came in and took over for me.

The five of us were all in one place, everyone crying except for me. We prayed a little together, and then we went to bed. I was shaken for the next few days. I will never forget that experience, but I am kind of glad it happened. I have taken the pro-life movement even more seriously than before.

I want to be able to say I avenged my big brother David by abolishing abortion, and I am confident that I am part of the generation that will do that.

This is what I was doing when you told me to clean my room.



We know how much abortion hurts men and women but we don’t often think of the sibling effect of abortion. I remember many years ago, a young woman approached my booth at a music festival. She explained how she had bought a pro-life t-shirt from me the year before and wore it home from the festival. When her mom saw the shirt, she decided to tell her daughter that she had had an abortion many years ago. They were able to seek counseling and the mother found healing as did her daughter. She thanked me for the work we were doing and bought another t-shirt.

There are some amazing resources for anyone who is hurting from abortion.

Rachel’s Vineyard Ministries

Silent No More Awareness Campaign

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Special Thank you to our friend Brendan Malone for permission to post this story originally posted at

In this exclusive guest post, a friend shares the tragic true story of abuse within her marriage with unflinching honesty and courage, while asking the question: would her unplanned child have been better off aborted?

For obvious reasons, the author wishes to remain anonymous.

We’ve all heard the statistics about how sexual abuse is most likely to be perpetrated by a family member, and how high its incidence is in blended families. But, I’d never thought of us as being a ‘blended family’. I had a child out of wedlock, then married a Christian, then we had our own children.

We were just a normal family.

Until the day I found out that my husband had sexually abused my biological daughter, his step-daughter – even then, it still took me years to come to terms with the fact that we were a high-risk group for sexual abuse.

The revelation of my husband’s abuse of my daughter led to the disintegration and eventual end of our two decade marriage. It meant years of estrangement from my daughter, and a relationship that may never be healed. It meant that there would be no more family gatherings: my daughter has understandably not wanted to see my former husband for many years now.

So, the question could be asked, should I have aborted this child all those years ago, when I faced an unplanned pregnancy?

Was it worth bringing into the world a child who would be rejected by her natural father, and then emotionally and sexually abused by her step-father?

I’m asking that question now, because many people justify abortion on the grounds that a particular unborn child is deemed to have no future.

We hear that children born into lower socio-economic realms will become drug-users, criminals, thieves. We hear that children born into violent households will become victims of violence. And we hear that blended families have higher rates of sexual abuse than are found in traditional families.

The end result is that we are led to believe that if the future of an unplanned child is judged to be too difficult or challenging, then it is more humane to abort that little child to preserve him from a life of suffering.

Well, I have another question to ask; one that can be asked of every person in the world, regardless of their ‘planned-ness’.

Is every life worth living?

Is death preferable to never having lived?

Do all the sorrows of life outweigh the joys?

Is there never room for hope?

Is it worth the risk of experiencing tragic events, to be able to experience standing in the wind that precedes a thunder-storm? Or to experience the rays of the sun beating down on your skin?

Is it better to have never been born than to know what it’s like to love another person so deeply that you conceive a child together, that you can carry that child, that you can give birth in pain and elation?

Would it have been better to never see the light of day, if that meant you would never feel your own little child’s soft arm around your neck, or hold your newborn close and feed her with milk from your own body?

There is no case for abortion here.

My own little grandchildren are living proof of that.

Would I have had an abortion if I had known my child would be sexually abused?

No, because to deprive another human being of experiencing the joys of life, despite the suffering, is truly unthinkable.

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The continuing saga of Troy, OH vs. Stand True, the pro-life message and free speech.

If you have been following what Stand True has been going through in our home town of Troy, OH over free speech and sidewalk chalking today’s story will be of no surprise to you. For those who may not be familiar with the back story, our town has been harassing the Stand True missionaries for over a year now, trying to stop us and silence us here in Troy, OH.

Earlier this summer they actually passed a special law against us chalking for 4 days to try and keep us away from the Troy Strawberry Festival. Read about that at Stand True Mission Team takes Ohio by storm confronting Nancy Pelosi, Planned Parenthood and witnessing to 100,000 in one weekend.

You can also read about them threatening to arrest us - Update On Stand True Missionaries Threat of Arrest by Troy Police Today

Last night the Stand True mission team hit the streets of Troy, OH to chalk around the City Council building and the Troy, Police Department. We chalked our usual pro-life and Gospel messages but also added some free speech messages. My oldest daughter came along and placed drop cards all over down town. She is growing up to be more like dad every day.

We woke up this morning to clean sidewalks as the city had it all washed away early. It was obviously power washed because the gutters were full of chalk residue. No problem. The team sat down for prayer, had lunch and then proceeded to go back and re-chalk everything during the lunch hour. They will not silence our message, they will not squash our free speech.

Here are some pics from last night and today. Also we need more chalk, can you donate $25, $50, $100, $500 or any amount to help Stand True educate, activate and equip this generation and keep us stocked up on chalk? – If you can donate please do so at


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My teenage daughter is a pro-life activist but doesn’t know I have had an abortion: One woman’s journey to confessing her abortion to her children.

On January 24, 2013, my daughter Zoe addressed the crowd at the March for Life Youth Rally in DC. Bryan Kemper of Stand True Pro-Life Outreach had been mentoring her for several months and she was already set on the path of a pro-life activist. She aimed to encourage young people to stand up and join her in the fight against abortion. When she said, “because what if my mother had had an abortion?,” Bryan looked at me with a look that said, “You need to tell her NOW.”

Ten months later, decompressing after an event in Lapeer, Michigan, I found myself having what had come to be a very familiar conversation. Bryan would ask me to speak at an event, I would say yes, and he would ask me to consider telling my children about my abortion. There was a point where I began to feel more bold, thinking that I was on the verge of finding the perfect moment, but that point had passed. My husband and I had already decided that we weren’t ready for that discussion.

“Would you consider speaking at the March for Life alongside Alveda King?” Bryan asked. “Of course; I’d love to,” was my typical response. “Are you gonna tell your kids before January?”

Nope. I was able to declare that without a doubt I absolutely would not have the courage to tell my babies that I’d aborted my first child, and I especially would not find that courage within the next two months. What are you, crazy? Just, no.

“I can’t ask you to speak again until you’ve told your kids. It’s Silent No More’s policy.”

I get it. I know exactly why that policy is in place. And I will take a hiatus from speaking publicly. Period. And without question.

Or not.

My children have always been willing to participate in pro-life activism with me. Children see the issue in the clearest and simplest terms. Abortion is killing a child. Killing a child is wrong. For years I have stood on the sidewalk pleading to mothers and fathers to reconsider their choice. Once, when he was about four, Jackson yelled, “DON’T GO TO ABORTION!” In 2012, Zoe made headlines in the pro-life news for standing up to some pro-abortion protestors at the DNC. They are staunchly and steadfastly PRO-LIFE. I could not be more proud.

But I was ashamed.

They didn’t know that their own mother had once been on the other side of the sidewalk. And how could I tell them? What would they think of me? What woman can tell her children that abortion is murder and murder is wrong but not in my case, because I was pro-choice then and I was young and I didn’t know what to do… So I chose to end the life of your oldest brother out of mere convenience.

I knew that I had support. I had some pretty amazing people praying for me. Bryan would send a text message, “Here I am with Kevin Burke (founder of Rachel’s Vineyard) and we are praying that you find the words to tell your children.” “Father Pavone and I are praying for you to have the talk with your kids.” “Georgette (co-founder of Silent No More) and I are praying about what we discussed before.” After a while I would roll my eyes, and then smile in thanks that I had these warriors praying for me.

Finally, I asked my Priest if he thought I should at least have the talk with Zoe, my oldest. He said, “I would be 100% surprised if she had no idea. She has to know.” I told him, “Uh, she’s almost 13 and I just told her about Santa. She cried herself to sleep and didn’t talk to me for two days.” But he encouraged me to pray about it and consider telling her about my past. When I woke up the next morning, I was certain that before I went to sleep that night, I would have unloaded this horrible secret to my daughter.

On Wednesday, January 8, nearly a year after Zoe spoke at the Stand True event, we arrived at the Cathedral to drop my younger three at Faith Formation and I told Zoe that we needed to talk. She almost began to cry as she panicked and asked, “Are we going to talk about puberty? Because I do NOT want to talk about PUBERTY!” I couldn’t help but laugh as I told her to hush and sit down.

Tissue in hand, I recounted the memory of my abortion to my firstborn. I was bawling. Zoe was stone-faced. Assuming that we would hug and cry together for the entire 90 minutes that her siblings were in class, I was kind of surprised to find myself spent after about ten minutes. “Do you have any questions?” “No.” “Are you OK?” “Yes.” “Do you forgive me?” “Yes. I’d like to speak with Father Rossi.” And with that, we called Father Rossi. He suggested that we might find comfort in spending time with Our Lord, and we headed into Adoration. Side by side, on our knees, I thanked Jesus profoundly and repeatedly for this young woman, and for her understanding and her compassion and for His grace and His mercy and His love. As I settled in to the pew, I watched in awe as Zoe stared at Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament and continued to pray. She prayed and prayed and prayed. Months later, after only a question or two had been asked about my experience, Zoe came to me and said, “Adoration is what helped me when you told me about your abortion.” As we left Adoration that evening, we agreed that her siblings (Lily, 11, Bella, 9 and Jackson, 7) were not ready for the news.

As I so often do, I rushed home to share my experience on Facebook. I attached a link to my testimony, which had been published a year and a half earlier. Sitting in front of my laptop, I had no idea that Jackson was behind me until he asked, “Is that a picture of you? Why are you holding a sign that says, ‘I REGRET MY ABORTION’? Did you have an abortion?”

I panicked. In that moment, I silently prayed, “Lord, please guide me. I will no longer hide this from my children. Help.” And I said, “Yes. I did have an abortion.” And I held my breath.

Jackson continued, “Wait. Did you have to get a SHOT?” What? “Yes, Buddy, I did.” Returning to his homework, he said, “How do you spell ‘Guido’?”  I was a little bit stunned. “G. U. I. D. O.” He dropped his pencil and said, “I’m finished with my homework!” And he ran upstairs to take a shower.

I laughed to myself and thanked God that was over. I was only mildly surprised to find out later that of course it WAS NOT OVER. As Lily and Bella hovered around me waiting to be tucked in for the night, Jackson declared, “Did you know Mama had an abortion?!” Lily looked at me when she addressed him and said, “No she didn’t. She only got her tubes tied. Wait. Did you have an abortion?” And this is when the severity of the situation set in for Jackson. Immediately crying, he ran upstairs to his room. I pulled up the website with my testimony and told Lily and Bella to read it together, and come upstairs to ask me any questions they might have.

As I approached Jackson’s bedroom door, I heard Zoe comforting him. Out of their sight, I listened as she said, “Don’t be upset, Buddy. Everyone makes mistakes but we can learn from them. Mama has been to Confession and she is sorry for what she did but she’s making it right through the work she does now.” I was absolutely stunned. Again I thanked Jesus for this amazing young woman, and I walked into Jackson’s room. He didn’t hesitate to throw his arms around my neck. Lily and Bella joined us and I asked if they had any questions. We talked about David James and asked him to pray for us and for all women considering abortion. We cried. We laughed. We prayed. We hugged.

I let out a huge sigh and asked if everyone was OK. My lovely children beamed at me and Jackson said, “Mama, if you have any more secrets, can you please keep them to yourself? I don’t like it when you cry.” I promised him that I don’t have ANY MORE secrets. I was free. Silent no more.

Brice Griffin

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VICTORY!!! For religious freedom

Today we celebrate freedom; we celebrate this epic ruling handed down by the Supreme Court in favor of religious freedom. SCOTUS has given us hope today as they upheld the rights of all Americans to be free from the tyranny and oppression of our government when it comes to our faith.
The Obama administration tried to force Hobby Lobby to violate their conscience and faith with the HHS Mandate, an intrinsic evil that would force Americans to pay for abortion causing drugs. Hobby Lobby is victorious today, and we at Stand True and Priests for Life celebrate with them and patiently await a ruling in our case.

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How Stand True got pro-life literature passed out INSIDE Planned Parenthood’s epic failure of a fundraiser.

The Stand True Mission Team arrived at the Packard Museum in Dayton, OH about an hour before the Planned Parenthood fundraiser was scheduled to begin. A local woman who we met during our outreach at the Troy Strawberry Festival joined us and brought along her husband. We were also joined by a few other local pro-lifers from Dayton.

We set out immediately to chalk all the sidewalks leading to the museum with pro-life and Gospel messages.  Within minutes someone from the museum came out to tell us we could not chalk near the driveways or big doors. I informed her she was wrong and invited her to call the Dayton Police.

Two Dayton Police officers showed up shortly after and talked to me for a few minutes and then went in to inform the museum that we were well within our rights. They said good-bye to us and told us to have a nice evening. (Maybe the Troy, OH could take a few lessons from Dayton on free speech.)

Two employees from the museum came out and approached me to ask about what we were doing. One of them had a high position, I believe. They were both heart broken that the event had been booked by the agency for the museum and told us how much they were on our side. It was obvious how devastated they were with the decision to host a Planned Parenthood event there.

The older gentleman was on the verge of tearing up and asked me if I had any pro-life literature. I told him Planned Parenthood would take it away from him and he said “ They will NOT stop me from passing this out inside the museum”. I loaded him up with some literature and graphic drop cards, and he went inside.

As the night progressed we set up right at the entrance to the event and showed every single person who paid $75 a ticket what their money went to and pleaded with them to stop supporting child killing and to turn to Christ. However we did not get to do much pleading as less then 25 people went into the fully catered event. I am sure Planned Parenthood lost money that night.

As we were standing there praying we noticed the Corpus Christi procession coming towards us from the local Catholic Church and at the same time looked up and saw a dove on a stick in the window of the building across the street. The dove looked as though it was looking down on us, like the Holy Spirit watching over us.

Ed and Kate from the mission team walked to the Church and talked to several people who then came down to greet us and thank us. A local politician and his family came by and thanked us for doing this work in his district.

A group of college age kids also came down and talked to the mission team for a while and asked about joining us at the abortion mill for prayer this summer. As we were about to leave, the group of young people decided to stay and pray over the event.

As I loaded up the van and pulled off, it was such a blessing to see these young people standing there, crying out to God for the babies and the souls of those inside this blood money event. I am the most blessed man on earth to stand with pro-life youth on a daily basis. This is the generation that will abolish abortion.

Today the team is loading up the supplies and getting ready to hit the road for the first road trip of the summer. We are so excited to get back on the road and be a light in this darkness.

We still need your support and help with a donation to keep these missionaries fed, on the road, and equipped to challenge the culture of death and spread the truth. Please make a donation today, and support this amazing team of young pro-life missionaries.

Can you donate $25, $50, $100, $500 or any amount to help Stand True educate, activate and equip this generation? – If you can donate please do so at

Donations can also be mailed to Stand True – PO Box 890 – Troy, OH 45373 or call 540-538-2581 to donate by phone.

For Christ I stand,

Bryan Kemper – President Stand True Pro-life Outreach

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Stand True Mission Team takes Ohio by storm confronting Nancy Pelosi, Planned Parenthood and witnessing to 100,000 in one weekend.

Can you donate $25, $50, $100, $500 or any amount to help Stand True educate, activate and equip this generation? – If you can donate please do so at - See more at:

Just two weeks into the 2 1/2 month summer mission and the Stand True Mission Team has already been stretched beyond what they ever could have imagined, but they are loving it. We started the training on Monday morning and by Wednesday the team was in the streets of Columbus, OH, confronting Nancy Pelosi’s bus tour which had partnered up with Planned Parenthood here in Ohio.

The team decided that if Planned Parenthood was going to celebrate abortion, then we were going to show everyone there the truth of what abortion looked like. Witness was so successul that the picture Planned Parenthood took of the rally and posted on Facebook also showed an aborted baby and an “abortion is murder” sign very clearly.

After teaming up with Created Equal in Columbus, we invited them to join Stand True as we witnessed to 100,000 people at the Troy, OH Strawberry Festival that weekend. We started by sidewalk chalking the city of Troy with pro-life messages and messages of hope in Christ.

To our surprise the City stopped us that night and informed us that they had passed a special law that forbade us from chalking during the Strawberry Festival. They were clearly trying to keep our pro-life witness out of downtown Troy that weekend. Thanks to our friends at the Alliance Defending Freedom, we showed them they cannot stop us from holding our signs and passing out literature.

On Saturday morning we set up a giant life development display, showing all nine months of development in the womb right in the center of the whole festival. We were received very well as so many parents brought their children over to show them how life begins and develops. Many pregnant women came by to point out how far along they were, as the team, with the help of my kids, eagerly passed out pro-life literature to passers by. It was a huge success.

I have also posted a great training video here of one of our encounters with someone who claims “I am pro-life but I don’t want to tell anyone else what to do” –

We have taken a couple of trips to the abortion mill in Kettering OH, with one even being canceled because they closed due to lack of business. Praise God!

One day we went to greet a Planned Parenthood fundraiser in Columbus OH with the Created Equal team again, shining the light of the truth in the hip “Short North” district where they were celebrating the killing of babies. We encountered much more opposition here and even had a store owner throw water at me as I sidewalk chalked. (He missed me). However, I had one amazing conversation with someone who was pretty hostile and later received an e-mail from him apologizing.

This week the team will be preparing for hitting the road and spending extra time at the abortion mill as I have to go to New York for meetings.

The team needs your help! They need to keep gas in the van, food in their stomachs and literature in their hands. Please support this amazing team and make sure they can continue to radically engage the culture and be a light this summer.

Can you donate $25, $50, $100, $500 or any amount to help Stand True educate, activate and equip this generation? – If you can donate please do so at

Donations can also be mailed to Stand True – PO Box 890 – Troy, OH 45373 or call 540-538-2581 to donate by phone.

For Christ I stand,

Bryan Kemper – President Stand True Pro-life Outreach

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Porned Parenthood

Lila Rose and Live Action have done it again – Just when you thought Planned Parenthood could not be any more despicable? Think again! 75 Million Dollars a year for sex ed and what do you think they are teaching young teens? How about whips, chains and violence, but it’s ok because it’s consensual… Find out more about the investigation here –

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Troy, OH Passes Special Law To Stop Stand True From Chalking Pro-life Messages During Strawberry Festival

Last night Stand True President, Bryan Kemper, the Stand True Missionaries and some of Bryan’s children were approached by the Troy, OH Police Department while they were sidewalk chalking. We were told that we could not do this because Troy, OH passed a special law that is only in effect for 4 days to stop Stand True from sidewalk chlaking. In the ordinance passed to permit the Strawberry Festival in downtown Troy, OH it included this “SECTION VII: That no person shall write, paint, chalk or otherwise permanently or temporarily deface or mark on the public streets, sidewalks, alleys or other public areas in the event area, as shown on “Exhibit A” attached hereto, from 9:00 PM on Thursday, June 5, 2014 through 7:00AM on Monday, June 9, 2014″

I talked with the police and got information on the ordinance and showed them an opinion from the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals concerning free speech at city festivals. I agreed to stop chalking last night until I could talk to my lawyers.

We intend to enter the festival which is on the public streets and sidewalks of Troy, OH with a large life development display on Saturday. We will be joined by Created Equal to show the display and distribute literature. The Police Captain told me last night he does not care about that, only about the chalking.

The Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys have advised that we do not chalk for now and get the police to say on video that we are not permitted.

We will keep you posted on our activities and outreach this weekend in Troy, OH.


On a good note, we had already chalked most of downtown when they told us to stop.

As I was typing this story the Police Captain came by and we talked about the situation, he assured me we will not be stopped from passing out literature and doing our life development display. Unfortunately, they picked our missionary house as the place to put all the port-a-potties.

Here are some more photos from last night.



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My Abortion Story – A feminist perspective from the teen of a teen mom.

In a half-asleep daze, with my abdomen in knots, I stumbled to the bathroom, fell to my knees, and began throwing up into the toilet. After a few heaves jolted me fully awake, I sensed someone standing behind me. Before I could turn my head to confirm my suspicions, my mother’s delicate hands swept past my cheeks and lightly pulled my hair out of my face.

In that moment I felt like a little girl again – cared for, watched over.

No matter how bad things were growing up, my mother always gave me as much unconditional love as any two parents combined. Oftentimes, our unshakeable familial love was all we had.

She helped me up to the sink. As I began rinsing my mouth, she eyed my midsection as if expecting to see something. I rolled my eyes and assured her it was just a bug, probably something I ate the night before. “I am not pregnant!” I said.

In my mind though, I knew she wasn’t the only one I was trying to convince. I was only 16, and my on-again, off-again boyfriend had started using drugs again – this time more than just recreationally. As I stared into the sink, my hand nervously jostling the toothbrush around my mouth, my mother disappeared.

I wanted nothing more than to shut down my brain and push these anxieties as far out of my mind as possible. I climbed back into the reassuring comfort of my warm bed. As my eyes grew heavy, the hum of my fan lulled me back to sleep.

What must have been hours later, since the sun was shining through my window, my mother walked back into my room and gently placed her hand on my arm. “I need you to get up and pee,” she said. What? When did I suddenly become a toddler again, in need of reminders for this sort of thing? That’s when I rubbed my eyes open and noticed the Dixie cup and tiny white stick resting in the palm of her hand.

Immediately, my heart plunged down to the base of my spine. No! Was this really happening? I reassured myself that there was nothing to discover, and so with the last sliver of blissful ignorance I would ever have, I scooped up the cup and did as I was told.

When I returned from the bathroom, I handed over the paper cup and I found my way back to the warmth of my bed. I could only see the lower half of my mother’s body as she leaned over the sink. And just as my head rediscovered the pillow I saw her rock back on her heels, letting out a slow and steady sigh. Surely, she couldn’t tell anything yet.

“How long do those things normally take?” I asked.

“Three and a half minutes,” she replied.

But before I could relish my relief, she finished, “But it only took 30 seconds.”

And then, my world imploded.

As I wailed into my mother’s embrace, all I wanted was to rip my stomach out of my body, or better yet leave my body behind all together, for someone else to deal with.

How could I have done this? I knew better. I knew better.

I knew the damage being a single teenage mother would do to a child, because I was that child. My mother was only 19 when she became pregnant with me. She was a sophomore at the University of Texas with such a bright future ahead of her when I came along. Because of me, our lives were racked with hardships. Was I prepared to put an innocent child through that, seeing as I was little more than a child myself?

The following days were a blur, and so many choices lay ahead of me. Being single and 16, it seemed only logical to have an abortion – at least to other people. Every time someone suggested it, though, I would flinch. Didn’t they realize all of the reasons they were giving that I should abort were the very same reasons my mother should have had an abortion? Didn’t they realize every time they said I’d be better off without this baby, they were saying the world would be better off without me?

I was spared from death and, while life hadn’t always been perfect, it was much better than the alternative. Who was I to take the life of this child, brought into the world by no fault of his own? I felt like I would have been a coward to make such a choice. And if my mother had taught me anything, it was how to be strong. No matter how many times life kicked us down, we got right back up.

This was no different. I wasn’t going to let the world tell me how weak I was, how this precious child was going to ruin me, how miserable we would be because of our circumstances. I knew since my mother was strong enough to choose me, I was strong enough to choose him.

Thirteen years later I look back on that time and I see how much I’ve grown, how much this child has changed me for the better. It’s hard to remember that day’s fear and the panic now. The only time I feel those emotions is when I realize how easy it would have been to buy into the lie the doubters told me and lost my child forever.

I panic when I imagine my life without this kid.

I feel scared for women going through crisis pregnancies with less support than I had. My heart breaks for the girls who choose abortion because, rather than believing they are strong enough, they’re told, “You can’t.”

If you want to know where the “stigma” surrounding abortion comes from, it is from pregnant women being told they are not good enough, strong enough, or woman enough to be a mother. It’s not the pressure society puts on women to carry children in less than desirable circumstances; it’s the fact that they know when they make the choice to abort they are accepting defeat. They are denying the biological awesomeness their bodies are capable of, and the inherent strength they have to turn “a mistake” into the best thing that will ever happen to them.

So, until you find a way to rid us of the sense of our own feminine strength, you will never be able to remove the stigma of abortion, which denies it.

*Oh, and as you can probably see, not all abortion stories have to end in abortion, some can end like this…

Destiny Herndon-DeLaRosa – New Wave Feminists 

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