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Saturday, August 30, 2008

A Devastating Choice

*Publisher's note: this personal testimony is being reprinted in light of the upcoming vote in South Dakota on Initiated Measure 11 and the recent statement by the American Psychological Association that abortion does not threaten women's mental health.

By Myra Jean Myers
Texas State Leader
Operation Outcry

For 31 years, I have regretted believing the lies of abortion. In January 1973, at the age of 28, I was married with four children when my husband and I made the “poor-choice” of abortion based on lies and exaggerated fears.

Unknown to me, my husband was assuming that another pregnancy would result in me becoming more anemic than I had been with the previous pregnancy. When he said there was only one thing to do, I knew what he meant. Abortion had been legalized the week earlier. I was afraid our marriage was not strong. He was afraid, I was not strong enough.

This was so different from 1965 when I was a 20-year-old single, college student and pregnant. We never considered an abortion then. It wasn't legal. We married.

Three years later we were expecting our third child. We felt it was too soon for another child, but the idea of aborting was never conceived in our minds. It was not legal. We had two more children.

In January 1973, I did not realize that I had become a mother at fertilization – when life begins. Fearful and under pressure, I went to Planned Parenthood. I was given no information on fetal/child development, not even a pregnancy test. No information was provided on the abortion procedure, risks, or consequences. I was told, "If you have a problem with it afterwards, we have counseling available." I wondered, "Why should I have any problem with it?"

The night before my appointment I asked, "God, Is there anything wrong in what I am going to do? Man says it isn't even life. What do You say?" In the morning a clerk at the clinic called, "The doctor has to cancel his appointments this morning." I wasn't listening; I made another appointment! While in the waiting room, there were three other women. Two of them were also married with children. I could hear their conversation: "It is our second, and it is too soon." "This is our third, and we only want two." The third woman was younger and the only one crying.

I thought nothing and felt nothing – I was already in denial. During the abortion procedure, my uterus was damaged. Because of my “poor-choice,” it had to be removed, which led to estrogen deprivation and eventual depression. Legalizing abortion has not made it safe.

One and a half years later, as I felt a crushing weight of guilt, grief, and shame, I knew “beyond the shadow of a doubt” I was responsible for the death of my child. “Oh God, I’ve murdered!” Legalizing abortion never made it right. Legalizing abortion never made it good for women.

When our third child was born two months premature and died, the loss brought grief but no guilt. But abortion destroyed our parent-child relationship and nearly destroyed our marriage due to the guilt, grief, shame, and blaming. Today, my husband and I agree that the devastating, “poorchoice” of abortion was the worst decision we ever made.

God loves us so much that He gave His Son to pay our debt of sin. Jesus, Himself, bore our sin on His own body on the cross to offer us forgiveness, to take our guilt and shame, freeing us to touch hearts, change lives, restore justice in our nation! Abortion hurts mothers, fathers, families, and America! Have you been hurt by abortion? Considering one? Call the National Helpline: 1-866-482-LIFE.

Myra is the Texas Team Leader for Operation Outcry. She has served as a volunteer and acting director of a pregnancy care center in Okinawa. She has been active with Christian Women’s Clubs for 28 years in Texas, New Hampshire, Okinawa, Tokyo, and Seoul.

Myra testified on behalf of the “Women’s Right To Know Bill” in the Texas Board of Health Committees. She also testified on behalf of the “Prenatal Protection Act” in a Texas House hearing.

Myra and her husband Garry of 40 years reside in Flower Mound, Texas. They are the parents of six children and grandparents of 15.

*Reprinted by permission of Operation Outcry.


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