How Will Abortion Affect Me Mentally?

Remember your first lost tooth? The moment you learned to drive? Your first kiss? The death of your grandma? Every event in your life has altered you in some way. Some moments make you better. Some moments leave hurts and scars that follow you for the rest of your days. 

For many men and women, abortion does the latter. It is an unforgettable event that can alter your life forever. Research shows that abortion can create mental decline and emotional trauma. 

What Does the Research Say?

Women who have undergone an abortion experience an 81% increased risk of mental health problems, According to Cambridge University,

One study in New Zealand found that “Those having an abortion had elevated rates of subsequent mental health problems including depression, anxiety, suicidal behaviours, and substance use disorders. This association persisted after adjustment for confounding factors.”

And a  2011 study published in the British Journal of Psychiatry reported that there were dramatic changes in mental health in women who had an abortion.  They found women who had an abortion were:

  • 110% more likely to abuse alcohol
  • 155% more likely to commit suicide
  • 220% more likely to abuse marijuana
  • 37% more likely to experience depression
  • 34% more likely to develop an anxiety disorder

Men also struggle post-abortion. According to sociologist Arthur Shostak, “90% of men consider the day of an abortion to be one of the most stressful of their lives.”

What Are the Symptoms?

You may be struggling mentally or emotionally post-abortion if you are experiencing any of these symptoms:

  • Nightmares or flashbacks
  • Depression
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Eating disorder
  • Substance abuse 
  • Self-harming practices like cutting 
  • Obsession with getting pregnant again
  • Inability to be around pregnant women or babies 

What Can I Do If I am Struggling Mentally After my Abortion?

There is hope for healing if you are struggling after your abortion. You do not have to live in a constant state of shame or regret.  Some things you can do:

  • Allow yourself to grieve. Don’t stuff your feelings. Instead, take them out. Analyze them. Allow yourself permission to not be OK for a while. You have experienced a true loss, and you need to walk the stages of emotion so that you can come through it.
  • Talk to a Counselor. You will find a new perspective and hope from sharing your story and getting some professional help.
  • Pursue a life-giving activity. Go for a hike. Paint a masterpiece. Play a song on your guitar. Do some yoga. Go to church. Write in a journal. Do something that is going to help you release some of your feelings.
  • Accept Forgiveness. You will find immeasurable healing when you forgive yourself, your partner and anyone else who was involved in your abortion. Forgiveness doesn’t mean your abortion was OK, but it means that it is OK to move on.

Come to our clinic for support. We are here to help connect you to a community of people who are just like you. We have helped many women and men heal after an abortion, and we are here for you too!

Our Hours:
Monday 11:00am-3:00pm
Wednesday 11:00am-3:00pm
Friday 11:00am-3:00pm
Visit Us:
143 S. Quarter Horse #2
Benson, AZ 85602
Mail Us:
PO Box 1687
Benson, AZ 85602