Every year more than a million abortions are performed in the United States according to the Guttmacher Institute. Eighteen percent of the abortions performed are on teenage girls. By the age of 20, one in ten women have had an abortion. By the age of 30, that number increases to one in four.
Since the Roe v. Wade decision was handed down by the Supreme Court in 1973, roughly 53 million abortions have been performed in our country. Every day, women and teenage girls walk through groups of rabid anti-abortion protesters to make the hardest decision of their lives.
When I was 17, I was one of those girls. I had unprotected sex with my boyfriend (now my husband) and thought,”Oh I’ll never get pregnant!”
I was wrong.
After countless hours of soul-searching and rivers of tears, I decided to have an abortion. I arrived at the clinic on a Tuesday and encountered a throng of super, awesome “Christians” holding pictures and signs like these:
(And others that were much, much more graphic, but I won’t put you through that.)
There were even children holding signs, and every one of those protesters yelled at me as I walked through the clinic doors.
The First Amendment protects their right to assemble. Nobody thinks that should be taken away. But seriously? How can you pretend to be a loving Christian and scream at scared teenage girls?
Millions of women have had this experience. Millions of women have made this decision I doubt many have made lightly. I didn’t wake up one morning and say,”I’ll read a book, abort a fetus, and have some lunch today.” That’s not how it happens.
It’s also not one without consequence. If you’ve ever been involved in an abortion debate, there’s always at least one captious person who declares something along the lines of:
You spread your legs so you should suffer the consequences and have that baby!
Because it’s all about “punishment” for them.
What people like that don’t seem to understand is that having an abortion left me with a different kind of punishment to endure; emotional scars that may not ever heal. It’s been twelve years for me and I still think about it every day. Just because a woman makes that choice doesn’t mean she wanted to do it. But for me, and many other women, it was the right choice for us at the time.
So, these people who stand outside of abortion clinics to scream and hold up pictures of dead fetuses, aren’t good people and they certainly aren’t Christians. If you are one of those people you should be ashamed of yourself. You make a difficult decision infinitely more difficult because you care more about your ideology (which you’re getting all wrong anyway because what would Jesus do? NOT THIS!) than you do people’s feelings.
That kind of behavior is not Christian, it’s shameful.
Images via Flickr