Research involving men who have had direct experience with abortion is scant to say the least. This is not surprising given our culture’s view of men when it comes to abortion: “it’s a woman’s choice alone” culture says. They leave men completely out of the decision. This does not mean they don’t hurt following an abortion. They do. And they often don’t know where to turn when they experience those emotions.
At Support After Abortion, we are developing new curriculms to help men heal from abortion with clinical experts as well the findings from our in-depth consumer research. We are aiming to get at both the heart and mind of a man who has experienced abortion. We currently have extensive content to help men who are wanting to explore healing from past abortion wounds at our website.
Men are searching for healing resources
So what does our in-depth consumer research reveal about men who have experienced abortion? Quite a few remarkable findings it turns out.
Consumer research is standard practice for most large companies as they develop and roll out new products. Janine Marrone, Board President at Support After Abortion, has extensive experience in this area and she used that expertise to conduct polling and surveys of both men and women who have experienced abortion. For the purpose of this podcast, the focus is on the research of men who have direct experience with an abortion decision.
“We learned nearly 45% of men said they didn’t have a voice in the decision and 50% said it was hers or someone else,” said Janine Marrone. “Only 5% or so said it was their decision.”
In other words, 95% of men who have experienced abortion had little to no say in the decision, even though it was their child as much as it was their partner’s.
Additionally, the research found that half of the men sought healing after the abortion loss usually did so within the first two years following the abortion. They were looking for help, Googling with words like “help after abortion,” “shame after abortion.” Many of the men searching for help after an abortion also trended younger, between the ages of 25-44 years old.
The surveys found that most of these men were just not finding the relief or closure they needed.
“Based on what we know in this study, at least 13 million men have been impacted by abortion and would be interested in some kind of healing process for their own personal experience,” said Janine. “Use your imagination. The ability to influence 13 million men in healing from their abortion, what kind of change can we make about the demand for abortion in the United States?”
Abortion Healing Program preferences
Most programs offered for abortion healing for women are faith-based. Support After Abortion wanted to see if men were interested in similar programs so they asked if they prefer faith-based or non-faith-based healing solutions.
The majority of men said they didn’t care either way. They are just looking to help when it comes to healing from their abortion.
Additionally, for women who have had an abortion, research shows they are less likely to go to religious services. But for men, our research indicates it’s the opposite: they are more likely to be pro-life than their partners and they go to religious services.
“Both of these findings we found remarkable,” said Janine Maronne.
Men and their emotions after abortion
Men express their emotions differently than women, to no one’s surprise. As interviews with previous guests on the podcast have shown, men may ask for help when they are facing addiction, PTSD, or anger issues. It comes out later than many of them have had an abortion in their past.
“When we see angry men related to abortion, it’s not because they had the abortion, it’s because they couldn’t prevent it,” said Janine. “This is remarkable in terms of what it is saying about our culture and men’s role in the abortion decision, counter to what we’re hearing in the abortion industry.”
Support After Abortion did not expect these findings and sees a huge opportunity to be that catalyst for change and address this market, these men, who are not being heard. For those who work in healing ministries and for those men who don’t know where to turn for help after an abortion experience, Support After Abortion is hosting experts like Janine Marrone at the Unraveling Roots of Men’s Trauma conference and her presentation is available to watch online. We’ll be exploring this issue of culture telling men they don’t need healing from abortion, as well as others that are overlooked when it comes to men healing from abortion trauma. They need to connect to their emotions in order to start healing and connection to feelings isn’t always easy for men.
If you or someone you know has been impacted by abortion, you are not alone. Call or text our confidential hopeline at 844-289-HOPE (4673). Women, this is your call: if your partner, male loved one or friend has had an abortion, visit us at www.supportafterabortion.com to learn how to create a safe space, and create a dialogue so more men can receive hope and healing after abortion.