Anonymous post-abortion counseling aims to end suffering, shame

Tuesday, June 12, 2018
Charlie Butts (

I regret my abortion (women holding signs)Post-abortive women will soon be able to work through their emotional problems anonymously.

Many women – especially church-going women – suffer silently after having an abortion, letting very few people know and often suffering shame that holds them down like a weight. That's why Theresa Wilkins of New York's Pregnancy Care Center of Oswego County developed the idea of anonymous counseling: so those women can get information and motivation without identifying themselves. The goal is to end a woman's silent suffering.

Wilkins tells OneNewsNow that the idea came from her experience with teleconferencing. She explains that post-abortive women can phone in, log into the teleconference, "and either just be silent and listen – or they can share their story.

"... We don't have to know who they are," she continues, "but we can still go through the 'Forgiven and Set Free' program* that we have – and they can even ask for a book." That resource, Wilkins adds, can be mailed to an address without revealing a name. (See details)

Wilkins, a post-abortive woman herself, learned forgiveness after her confession of faith and found that she was not alone.

"According to Care Net, 37 percent of all abortions happen to churched women – so they are Christian women who are actually having abortions .... Why is that?" she asks. "Because they don't want anybody to know that they have fallen into the sin, right? That's a much more public sin."

The anonymous counseling service will begin soon – and if successful, Wilkins envisions the program spreading nationwide. Meanwhile, she says the Church as a whole could do a better job of identifying its post-abortive women and learning how to work with them to ease the emotional pain.

* "Forgiven and Set Free: A Post-Abortion Bible Study for Women" (Baker Books, 2015), written by Linda Cochrane, was developed out of the author's own experience of being freed from the bondage of guilt and grief that followed her abortion. Cochrane is executive director of Hopeline Pregnancy Resource Center in Connecticut, and co-founder of PACE (Post-Abortion Counseling and Education).

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