Support After Abortion released the following statement after a judge allowed a lawsuit to proceed against Wisconsin’s 173-year-old abortion ban:
America’s view of life, family, and women’s rights has changed a lot since the mid-19th century. So has our knowledge of mental health. One of the biggest changes in recent years is the surge in women who choose medication abortion over surgical methods – and, as a result, experience their abortion isolated at home, instead of anesthetized in a clinic. Not knowing where to turn for support ultimately compounds that trauma for many women.
We see real people suffering after abortion because the political maneuvering often fails to take the human element into account. Millions of vulnerable women say they feel judged by pro-life advocates, while others feel disenfranchised by the failure of abortion advocates to acknowledge that after-abortion suffering is real.
Meeting people where they are, which is a principle of trauma-informed care, is the first way we can show compassion and support. Instead of looking at abortion as solely a political or legal issue, people should be able to agree that helping those hurting after abortion find healing is a necessary human issue for which we need to grow access.
Support After Abortion’s nationally representative survey of women who experienced medication abortion found that nearly two thirds of women either sought help or wished they had someone to talk to. Additionally, over a third of women surveyed reported adverse impacts after a medication abortion, yet less than one in five said they knew where to seek help.
Support After Abortion’s research-based after-abortion training for therapists, counselors, and other providers is a blueprint for elevating healing and compassion for women and men seeking mental health support after experiencing an abortion. Some of Support After Abortion’s best practices include:
Anonymous after-abortion helpline for referral to one-on-one or group support, including therapy.
A national directory of providers familiar with Support After Abortion’s philosophy of care.
Online and in-person support groups, for women and men impacted by abortion and for those impacted by someone else’s abortion.