Guest Blog Post by Georgette Forney
As we gear up for the annual March for Life in DC, someone inevitably asks me why I do this every year, especially when we typically march in freezing temperatures.
I think different people march for different reasons, so there is not one simple answer, but I march in honor of those who have died because of abortion.
I march for the 56 million babies who have died by abortion, including my baby.
When I am marching, walking alongside other folks from the Silent No More Awareness Campaign, I am honoring the life of my unborn child, Elizabeth (the name I gave her at the memorial service held at the end of the abortion healing program I attended) and they are honoring their children’s lives as well.
When I was 16 years old and found out I was pregnant, I didn’t consciously acknowledge or know that every life is created by God and has purpose. It was all about me and how a child would ruin my future hopes and dreams.
Now I understand every life has value and every aborted baby is a loss for parents, family, and society. My selfishness denied my daughter her personhood, her purpose, her dreams, and her achievements. It was when I finally acknowledged her real-ness and wept for what I missed out on that my healing and restoration began. Grieving for her opened the doors of my heart, my tears came with the reality of what I lost.
I also march for all the women who should be marching with us but cannot do so.
Some women won’t ever march with us because they have died from abortion or suicide afterwards. In the US, 31% of women suffer from health complications after their abortions.[i] Additionally, suicide rates among women who have had abortions are six times higher that women who have given birth.[ii]
Some women can’t march with us because they are dealing with physical complications, while others struggle from emotional complications. Women who have had abortions are 65% more likely to be at risk of long-term clinical depression than women who gave birth.[iii] Finally, there are many still locked in silence, afraid of judgment, bearing shame and guilt, feeling alone, and unsure if anyone cares.
I march because I want these women to know I care, and there is an organized group of us who care. We carry signs that bear the truth “I Regret My Abortion,” and we share testimonies that explain the reality of abortion and the hope and healing we have found. We march to offer help, and we march to show the world that abortion has consequences—real children who died, real parents and families who suffer, and real people who want the world to know the truth.
[i] VM Rue et. al., “Induced abortion and traumatic stress: A preliminary comparison of American and Russian women,” Medical Science Monitor 10 (10): SR5-16, 2004.
[ii] M. Gissler et. al., “Injury deaths, suicides, and homicides associated with pregnancy, Finland 1987-2000,” European J. Public Health 15(5):459-63, 2005.
[iii] JR Cougle, DC Rearden & PK Coleman, “Depression Associated with Abortion and Childbirth: A Long-Term Analysis of the NLSY Cohort,” Medical Science Monitor 9(4):CR 105-112, 2003.