Claire Culwell knows what it’s like to be a survivor. At the age of 13, her mother learned she was pregnant and decided to have an abortion, though she didn’t know she was pregnant with twins.
After she had an abortion of Claire’s brother, she returned to the abortion clinic after realizing she still had a growing and developing baby inside of her. Told she was too late to have a second abortion, she gave birth to Claire, who struggled on life support as she dealt with a myriad of medical issues following her birth.
Despite the obstacles she has had to overcome, Claire is actively sharing her story — urging people to choose life instead of abortion. And now, via the web site of pro-life activist Abby Johnson, Claire has written an incredible letter with an incredible message to the abortion doctor.
Here is that letter:
Dear Dr. Patel,
I am writing with a heavy heart. I recently discovered you in the news due to the violations your abortion clinic has made. I found that I have a closer connection to you than I thought.
In 1988, my 13-year-old birth mother placed herself in your care to perform her abortion…her 20-week abortion. She was assured that the abortion would fix her problem and that her life would return to normal but it didn’t.
When she returned to see you, she was informed that the abortion had been successful, in part, but she was still pregnant as she had actually been pregnant with twins but had been misinformed. She was also told that during the abortion the amniotic sac had been ruptured, thus leaking fluid for weeks. This proposed many complications for my birth mother. Due to the botched abortion, I was born 2.5 months premature with many lifelong complications.
As I read your medical practice history, I found my testimony consistent with many of your other former patients. My birth mother was 13. She was young and naïve; she would be easy to manipulate and lie to. She didn’t know any better. Due to the abortion that was botched, my birth mother has suffered 26 years of hardship and regret. I can only imagine the things that may have happened that she feels like she can’t speak about…things that other women are confessing that you did to them while in your care.
However, she was not the only one affected by the failed abortion. My life, my family’s life, and my children’s lives would all eventually be effected by one “mistake” or one “botched abortion” that was performed so long ago. Not only was I born 2.5 months premature but I was born with complications including dislocated hips, club feet, and was on life support in the hospital. I went through multiple casts on my feet, a harness on my hips to prepare for surgery and body casts in order to correct what the abortion had done to my body. In fact, I still have hip and foot complications today due to the abortion. The unfortunate part is that I am not alone. Hundreds of other survivors of abortions are speaking up letting the world know that we ARE children, we DO deserve a chance at life and that abortion is, clearly, NOT SAFE.
I spent 21 years of my life wondering if I had a sibling that was missing. I felt it in my heart. My birth mother confirmed my questions when she told me about her abortion when I met her. Realizing that you have lived your entire life without your twin is a harsh reality. However, the hardest part for me is realizing that you took my daddy’s only son from him. His life would have been even more full and joyful had he had his son who would carry on his family name and do the things he loves with him—hunt and fish. Because of the selfishness that abortion has brought to us today, our family will remain incomplete and I mourn the amazing adventures my daddy is missing with my brother.
In February of 2013, another miracle happened… My daughter was born! I can’t help but think about how she wouldn’t be here if the abortion had been successful on my life. She has only been here for a short time but she has touched so many lives with her fun-loving personality. I can’t help but wonder how many children are missing because their mothers were misinformed by you and told that the best decision, or even the only decision, was abortion.
Dr. Patel, I write to not only shed light on the reality of the severe aftermath that can happen when abortions are performed but to also express my forgiveness to you for what happened. I have lived a full life and been well loved in my 26 years of life despite my circumstances. I was adopted into an incredible home that gave more grace and forgiveness than I ever could have asked for. In the same way I have been forgiven by God for many things, I choose to forgive you. I forgive you for performing the abortion in 1988 and for the enormous impact it has had on my birth mother and me.
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I also pray for you. I pray that you are able to see past the medicine, the money and your usual way of life… and that you will remember my face (and my daughter’s who would not be here had the abortion been successful) as you go to perform abortions. I pray that as you remember my face that you will be moved in such a way to walk away from the abortion practice and use your gifts outside of the industry. I assure you that many of us, myself included, would help you leave the industry and be encouragers and supporters to you. I would welcome you with open arms because I fully believe your life and what you do with your life is just as valuable as every single unborn child that I advocate for. I will continue to pray for you and your past and current patients.