Not quite as exceptional as you might think…

I saw the following item in the news yesterday and wanted to offer my own anecdotal perspective on it:

“Operation Rescue has released eight tapes of 911 calls from New Mexico abortion clinics regarding women who suffered from complications including a ruptured uterus, cervical laceration with hemorrhaging, and multiple seizures.  On average, there is a 911 call from a New Mexico abortion clinic every 10 weeks.”


Several years ago, I was in the emergency room at a major hospital in New Jersey.  In the same room was a pretty young woman in her twenties who was suffering from hemorrhaging. I heard her tell the doctor that she had undergone an abortion earlier that day. She was rushed off for some tests.  Upon her return to our shared room, the doctor informed her that her hemorrhaging stemmed from fetal tissue left inside of her uterus from the abortion – parts of her unborn child that the abortionist had failed to clean out of her.  He explained that her uterus might have been perforated, in which case a hysterectomy would be necessary. Even more heartbreaking, the abortion might have perforated her colon, too.  If that were the case,  this attractive young woman would spend the rest of her life with a colostomy bag.

But it was what the doctor said next that blew me away:  “You’re one of the lucky ones…”

Now, I was perfectly aware at this point that botched abortions had not disappeared after Roe vs. Wade.  Abortions were legal, but – despite the promises of pro-choice advocates and politicians – abortions had not become rare, and they still weren’t always safe.  But this experience brought the issue to my attention in a more dramatic way.

Not every woman suffers the same problems from a botched abortion as this young woman did, but how many times do we hear about women experiencing infertility after an abortion?  Many of these women don’t even make the connection between the two.  My work with the Silent No More Awareness Campaign has really opened my eyes to how *common* these complications are. You can visit to read and listen to more testimonies.  The next time you hear someone talk about the benefit of abortion – how women need abortion – share these facts and this story with them. Abortion shouldn’t just be illegal – it should be unthinkable. It should be the choice that no one has to choose.

One Response to “Not quite as exceptional as you might think…”

  1. Leslie Palma-Simoncek says:

    Great post, Janet. It’s very rare to read about abortions gone wrong in the mainstream media so it’s important to get the word out that these things happen, way more often than most people think.

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