Abortion Advocates Discount Emotional Problems After Abortion

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jan 27, 2004   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Abortion Advocates Discount Emotional Problems After Abortion

by Maria Gallagher
LifeNews.com Staff Writer
January 27, 2004

Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — The pro-abortion lobby is attempting to discount scientific evidence showing a link between abortion and psychological problems.

One of the nation’s leading pro-abortion researchers, Nancy Russo of Arizona State University, recently told a science reporter from the Toledo Blade newspaper, "As far as I’m concerned, whether or not an abortion creates psychological difficulties is not relevant…it means you give proper informed consent and you deal with it."

The Elliot Institute, which studies the after-effects of abortion, responded, "Maybe Russo wasn’t quoted exactly right. But it sure sounds harsh to say that the emotional pain millions of women experience after abortion is ‘not relevant’ and they should just ‘deal with it.’"

The Institute, however, made note of the fact that Russo indicated that women should be told of the possible psychological side-effects of abortion as part of the informed consent process.

Under informed consent laws, which are in place in a number of states, women considering abortion must be told of the medical risks involved.

"One bright spot in (Russo’s) comment…is the admission that psychological problems after abortion should be disclosed to women as part of the informed
consent process," the Institute said. "This is rarely if ever done."

A researcher at Bowling Green State University, Priscilla Coleman, told the Toledo Blade that approximately 10 percent of women who undergo abortions experience psychological problems as a result.

"It’s that 10 percent with a common procedure that just keeps nudging at me. I think that’s a group we really need to look at more closely. Ten percent of 1.3 million women. How could we ignore that? If it was any other medical procedure it would get more attention," Coleman told the Blade.

Coleman has co-authored a study which compares psychiatric hospitalizations of women who abort versus women who give birth. The data for the study, which was published in Canada’s most well-respected medical journal, came from California’s Medicaid program, MediCal.

The study showed that women who had had abortions were much more likely to
be hospitalized for psychiatric illness during the four years after pregnancy.

Within 90 days of the abortion or birth, post-abortive women had a rate of psychiatric hospitalization 160 percent higher than that for women who had given birth. After four years, women who had had abortions were 50 percent more likely to be hospitalized for mental illness.

Visit the Elliot Institute’s website, https://www.afterabortion.org, and you’ll find article after article documenting abortion’s devastating effects on women.

The Institute’s David Reardon, Ph.D., notes that a common complaint raised by post-abortive women is that therapists tend to dismiss abortion as irrelevant.

Reardon is co-author of a book called Forbidden Grief: The Unspoken Pain of Abortion.

"Therapists who fixate on the ‘abortion is benign’ theory, either out of ignorance or allegiance to defensive political views on abortion, are doing a great disservice to women who need understanding and support," Reardon said.