teens & moms at risk
injustice to all involved
hope & healing
you are not alone
Most abortions are unwanted or coerced. Many forced.
"Look, I'll give you 5 minutes to think about
"I collapsed in sheer exhaustion. I told her that I had been
outside for hours.
"I cried hysterically ... with my head in my hands. The pressure was
counselor told me that if I was going to abort then I would have to
do it right now.
"The counselor said, 'Look, I'll give you five minutes to think
about it and when I come back, I want your answer.'
"Now I was going into a state of panic and shock. I could barely
"The counselor glared at me, sighed a deep sigh and said, 'Look,
they're all waiting for you, you know ... "
Genevieve, from the book Giving
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Coercion poses a risk and injustice to teens and all pregnant women
"The rhetoric of choice suggests there are a lot of choices,
good and of equal weight ... it suggests no coercion, direct or
– Melinda Tankard
Reist in Giving Sorrow Words
New evidence reveals that abortion is not about a woman's freedom to
choose. Studies show that abortion often results from the demands,
threats and non-support of others whom the woman or girl depends on for
support; or as a result of deceptive or false information presented as
"fact" by those in authority. Many abortions take place even when it
violates the mother's own beliefs, values and desire to keep the baby.
The pressure often comes from all sides at a time when some women are
most vulnerable. Others are just seeking honest information or a helping
hand at a challenging time.
Women who have had abortions come from all walks of life. But despite
their many differences, many were deceived and manipulated or actively
blocked – ironically – from the "choice" they
wanted. Many were directly or indirectly forced into unwanted abortions.
Still others were blackmailed or threatened, sometimes violently. It's
no wonder that a growing number of women see abortion as a tool by which
many teens and women of all ages have been abused, abandoned and
For millions of women hurt by pregnancy-related injustices and
post-abortion injury, or death ... it was never about authentic, free,
fair or fully informed "choice."
Abortion on demand is often a demand, an ultimatum, a threat, a shell
game, or an unfair substitute for accurate information, full disclosure,
authentic support and meaningful alternatives.
Coercion is common and comes from all sides
Tuesday, a bus picked up students from all the area high schools and
took them to the Planned Parenthood clinic. … It was all so
organized. …They were all
particularly careful to find out when my parents would not be home …
On the bus, I felt as though I had no control over what was happening to
me… still today, I feel like I did not decide to have the
"The night I told him I was pregnant, he destroyed our apartment. He
was screaming at me, telling me I was a whore, slut, pig ... you name
it. He told me that the kid would be retarded, abnormal, and to get rid
of it. NOW! The whole time he cornered me in the bedroom, throwing
things and killing me with his words. ... He was so mean. ... His eyes
were so black with anger. … The abortion ripped my world apart." –Mary,
in Forbidden Grief
... told me to leave the house and forget that I was their daughter.
I left the house with no job, no money, no home and nowhere to turn,
feeling utterly abandoned and alone. Still, I was certain I would not
get an abortion. I wanted my child.
... my father sent several messages urging me to have an abortion. I
refused. But as I began to feel more desperate, I shut down my feelings
... functioning more like a surreal observer than someone in control.
Coercion can escalate to violence, forced abortion or homicide
Women have been forced into clinics or restrained when they tried to
escape an unwanted abortion.
Women have been silenced when they were uncertain or
when they asked "too many questions."
Some who refused to abort have been subjected to
terrible abuses, such as forced injections,
stabbings, beatings, strangulation, gunshots,
Coercion can escalate to violence or even homicide if women won't
abort. Homicide is the leading cause of death for
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our Forced Abortion Report
Learn more, including
downloadable resources ...
Coerced Abortion Page
Forced Abortion Page
Center Against Forced
Abortions (off-site) help for those being coerced into unwanted
Stories about unwanted, coerced or forced
1. Woo J., “Abortion Doctor’s Patients Broaden Suits,” Wall Street
Journal Oct. 28, 1994, B12:1.
Zimmerman MK, Passages Through
Abortion; (New York: Praeger Publishers, 1977) 69; see also Los
Angeles Times Poll, March 19, 1989, question 76.; and Skelton G.,
“Many in Survey Who Had Abortion Cite Guilt Feelings,” Los Angeles
Times, March 19, 1989, p.28.
2. I.L. Horton and D. Cheng, “Enhanced Surveillance for
Pregnancy-Associated Mortality-Maryland, 1993-1998,” JAMA
285(11): 1455-1459, 2001. See also J. Mcfarlane et. al., "Abuse During
Pregnancy and Femicide: Urgent Implications for Women's Health,"
Obstetrics & Gynecology 100: 27-36, 2002.
3. Rue et. al., "Induced
abortion and traumatic stress: A preliminary comparison of American and
Russian women," Medical Science Monitor
10(10): SR5-16, 2004.
4. DC Reardon, Aborted Women,
Silent No More (Springfield, IL: Acorn Books, 2002) 336.
5. Arthur Shostak & Gary
McLouth, Men and Abortion: Lessons, Losses and Love (New York:
Praeger Publishers, 1984).
6. Mary K. Zimmerman, Passage Through Abortion (New York, Praeger
7. J. Mcfarlane et. al., "Abuse During Pregnancy and Femicide: Urgent
Implications for Women's Health," Obstetrics & Gynecology 100:
8. Brian McQuarrie, "Guard, clinic at odds at abortion hearing," The
Boston Globe, April 16, 1999.
9. Carol Everett with Jack Shaw, Blood Money (Sisters, OR:
Multnomah Books, 1992). See also Pamela Zekman and Pamela Warwick, “The
Abortion Profiteers,” Chicago Sun Times special reprint, Dec. 3,
1978 (originally published Nov. 12, 1978), p. 2-3, 33.
10. For examples, see the books
Giving Sorrow Words and Forbidden Grief, as well as personal stories on the
The UnChoice Stories page on this site.