It is estimated one of every two women entering a Pregnancy Help Center (PHC) has already experienced an abortion. That tells you at least two things: Counselors at PHCs need to be alert to these women and their needs, and there are a lot more people walking around having been touched by abortion than you realize.
These realities explain why Vitae Foundation brought Michaelene Fredenburg to Jefferson City on August 26. While here, she addressed a group of PHC directors regarding reproductive grief.
“Someone who has had an abortion ,may feel isolated and alone making it more difficult to grieve,” Fredenburg stated.
The Wisconsin native would know, as she experienced her own abortion at 18. She thought it would solve her problem. Because it changed her so much, her life fell apart. What helped her put it back together was helping others—both men and women—with the process of reproductive grief.
Fredenburg developed a website which is an invitation to individuals to begin looking at the abortion experience. Once they realize they aren’t alone, healing can begin. She discovered that men and women often want to start investigating their grief in private. PHCs are called upon as a resource in that grieving process and can lead individuals to Fredenburg’s AbortionChangesYou.com.
There was also an evening session for Vitae supporters. Fredenburg shared how Vitae is different from many other pro-life organizations. “Vitae shares its knowledge. You are a bridge organization who is not territorial. You bring people together and seek out top experts who can bring their expertise to Pregnancy Help Centers.”
Those gathered at the evening session learned that there will be about one million elective abortions this year. One in three women will have experienced an abortion by the age of 45.
The Abortion Changes You website allows people to share their stories as part of the healing process. One story Fredenburg shared was how a senior in high school became pregnant and told her girlfriends. As a group they decided abortion made the most sense, so they helped their friend get an abortion. In college another girl in the group unexpectantly became pregnant, but she decided to keep her baby. The girl who had aborted wouldn’t go to the shower or hospital at the time of the birth. The friends don’t know how to help her move to a place of healing.
The release of the shocking Planned Parenthood videos can be a painful trigger.. After the first video was posted, Planned Parenthood’s Facebook page received a message from a woman who had an abortion at 16. She wrote: “I’m drinking a glass of wine just like the woman in the video, wondering if my baby was for sale. I feel damn near suicidal.”
Fredenburg noted that although the videos are getting a lot of attention, what’s not being talked about is how they may be impacting men and women who’ve already experienced abortion.
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Vitae Founder/Strategic Advisor Carl Landwehr reminded participants that Vitae’s media strategies continue to help direct woman experiencing an unintended pregnancy to over 130 life-affirming Pregnancy Help Centers across the country.
“Our beta site research indicated 74 percent of women responding to Internet marketing were abortion minded. Of those women who came to the centers, 54 percent chose life,” Landwehr stated. These are women who will not need to seek out the AbortionChangesYou website—at least not for themselves.
LifeNews Note: Martha Schieber is the Communications Director of the Vitae Foundation.