Forms of Childhood Strife that Lead to Abortion
Previous traumatic events are often part of an abortion journey. Unexpected pregnancy often results during deep family strife as one generation significantly impacts another. For many minors, pregnancies often result in abortion.
These strife cycles cascade down the family line often ending in a generational circle of discord. Since one generation clearly impacts another, abortion decisions are often repeated down a family line.
A psychological test of the impact of family strife on unplanned pregnancy is call the “Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE)” test. The ACE test breaks down family strife situations into 8 experiences, including:
- Recurrent physical abuse
- Recurrent emotional abuse
- Contact sexual abuse
- An alcohol and/or drug abuser in the household
- An incarcerated household member
- Someone in the home who is chronically depressed, mentally ill, institutionalized, or suicidal
- Mother is treated violently
- One or no parents
A study in Pediatrics researched ACE results in comparison with teenage pregnancy. They discovered that if your childhood experience included 4 or more of these variables listed above, you were likely to have experienced an unexpected pregnancy.
Discovering how I ended up at an abortion clinic helped me forgive the younger version of myself for aborting my first child. My abortion recovery healing required not only addressing past family trauma but understanding how the ordeals of my childhood led me into a teenage pregnancy that ended in abortion.
When I personally took the ACE test, my score of 4 made the impact of my upbringing very obvious. Here were some basic points about my early childhood strife as the daughter of a Baptist preacher:
- My parents often fought before divorcing which included physical violence and ongoing emotional and verbal abuse – Ace score: 2
- Before their separation, my birth-father institutionalized my mother for several months to prevent her from filing for divorce – ACE score:1
- After their divorce, I was raised by a single parent, having little or no contact with my birth-father – ACE score:1
Realizing how these traumatic elements of my upbringing impacted the loss of my virginity helped me understand why I chose abortion.
What was not included in this study were POSITIVE experiences in early life that build buoyancy and impacted how the trauma impacts a child. We can certainly understand how a loving teacher, grandparent or friend can impact the cycle of strife in a family in a positive direction.
In spite of my ACE score, my upbringing was not as horrible as others. My mother’s best friend, who took care of me while she was in a mental institution, supported me emotionally and physically during that traumatic period of my life. She encouraged me that God had not forgotten His call on my life, and He would turn my family’s turmoil into something that could be used for His good.
My mother remarried a man that loved me deeply, even though he did not share my faith in God. He helped my mother’s emotional well-being and provided financially for us. When I was 21, I asked my stepfather to adopt me. That was a real healing step in both our lives. At the end of his life, my dad would say that my mother and I adopted him!
Despite the love and security my dad provided, my childhood strife continued to haunt my heart, leading to many dysfunctional decisions. When I went to college, I searched for a meaningful relationship. A liaison with a fellow student involved more strife as alcoholism and sexual abuse were involved.
When I became pregnant a few months later, this partner coerced me to abort. That resulted in a violent surgical abortion that was performed without anesthesia. I then turned to drugs and alcohol to help combat my own spiritual, emotional and psychological pain that resulted.
In taking the ACE test, my childhood experiences were resurrected in my heart. I could also see God’s hand of protection over my young life by giving me my mother’s best friend and a loving stepfather. While my choices were not good ones, my early childhood trauma included a salvation experience. In accepting Christ as my Savior as a young child, God never left my side. He then helped me find deep healing and peace.
Joining an abortion recovery class, offered through a Pregnancy Center, was the first step in resolving my adverse childhood experiences because I returned to a personal relationship with God. Through Scripture and gentle leadership, I learned that God loved me in spite of my abortion choice. The peace that passes all understanding took hold of my heart and I was able to forgive, not only myself, but everyone involved in my abortion as well as my family.
Psalm 40:1-3 outlines God’s peaceful process of healing – I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God.
God can resolve any childhood strife that led to poor choices. To learn how your childhood impacted your youthful sexual experiences and subsequent abortion, take your own ACE test. Outline in your journal any of the outlined strife you endured in childhood. Take time to pray and seek God to show you the good people in your life that helped you in your youth. If they are still alive, prayerfully consider thanking them for their positive involvement in your life.
Hello, I am Sydna Massé Founder and CEO of Ramah International. I'd love to keep in touch and include you in our prayer chain as we continue to serve abortion's wounded and those considering abortion.
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