Millions of children in America today have brothers or sisters who they will never know because of abortion.
Abortion advocate Liz Jones’s son is one of them. The Tumblr blog “Pregnant, Parenting, and Pro-Choice” highlighted Jones’s abortion story, one of a handful on the site.
Jones wrote a short summary of her abortion and parenting experiences for the blog and included a photo of her smiling and holding her toddler son:
My name is Liz Jones and I am a pro-choice parent. I had my son two and a half years ago and an abortion last year. After dealing with a traumatic birth and the stigma of abortion, I became a doula to help other parents through their difficult transitions. I believe that everyone deserves love, support, and autonomy through the full spectrum of pregnancy experiences.
The purpose of the blog appears to be to show that abortion activists can be good parents. The blog introduction states that there is no “contradiction between supporting abortion access and supporting the right to parent.” It invites mothers to share stories and photos about why they are pro-choice and advertises the hashtag #ProChoiceParents.
Though Jones’s son (along with several other writers’ children) is too young to understand his mother’s abortion, someday he may. The impact that abortion has on the unborn child’s siblings can be strong, both physically and emotionally – and is backed up by research.
Though not applicable in Jones’s case, women who have abortions and then later give birth to other children face a greater risk of premature birth. An Amsterdam study published in 2015 found that surgical D&C abortions or miscarriages increased the risk of a subsequent premature birth (under 37 weeks) by 28 percent and the risk of very premature birth (under 32 weeks) by 69 percent. Numerous other studies report similar risks.
Babies who are born prematurely because of a previous abortion are at greater risk of dying or having health problems throughout their lives, too. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports, “Preterm-related causes of death together accounted for 35% of all infant deaths in 2010, more than any other single cause.” The CDC also says: “Preterm birth is also a leading cause of long-term neurological disabilities in children. Preterm birth costs the U.S. health care system more than $26 billion in 2005.”
Abortion also can have long-lasting emotional effects on siblings, according to Dr. Philip Ney, a prominent researcher and child psychologist. Ney found that siblings of aborted children sometimes experience survivor’s guilt, similar to soldiers who return from war or surviving victims of the Holocaust. These post-abortive siblings struggle with the knowledge that they are alive because they were wanted but their siblings were not, according to Ney’s research.
“The most prominent symptom of PASS (post-abortion survivor syndrome) is existential guilt, ‘I feel I don’t deserve to be alive,’” Ney said. “What makes PASS more difficult is the fact that it is a person’s parents who wanted them but killed their unwanted siblings. Wantedness has determined who lives and who dies. This makes Margaret Sanger’s motto “The first right of every child is to be wanted” such a travesty. The first and only inalienable rights are to be, to become and to be welcomed into a family. Wanted children are almost all PASS with life long struggles about existing.”
According to Ney’s research, siblings can show symptoms of depression, anxiety, shame, guilt, self injury, low self esteem and dissociation.
Though abortion activists don’t like to admit it, abortion has a ripple effect that extends beyond the unborn child and the woman. They tout “bodily autonomy” as a reason for abortion, ignoring the fact that the loss of an innocent human life through abortion impacts the whole family.