“What if?” These two tiny words, seemingly so innocuous by themselves, when put together have the power to haunt. “What if” I hadn’t gone to that party? “What if” I hadn’t let him hand me that last drink?
We hear these two simple words uttered much too often by both teens and young adults today. It takes just one night of abandoning normal behavior to change the course of a life and force a person to make sudden decisions about the future.
The statistics are staggering. More than 800,000 teenage girls become pregnant each year, which means that over 30 percent of teenagers get pregnant at least once before the age of 20. Further statistics address the shocking reality that, out of all teen pregnancies, 30 percent will end in abortion. That is 300,000 children taken to be with God too soon, and 300,000 women who have to live with murder on their hearts.
We are well aware that the devil has allies who help him in his quest to seek out souls. One such ally comes in the form of Planned Parenthood—the organization that tells young adults that abortions are very common, and that receives a massive income by promoting and selling sex. Confused young adults then take PP’s message that “sex is good” and end up as parents. Then Planned Parenthood steps in and says, “Don’t worry, our staff is here to help pick up the pieces and supply abortions.” Feeling trapped, many of these new young parents let PP guide them directly to the abortion table.
But this “easy fix” that Planned Parenthood offers isn’t so easy on young women. This is why countless Christian charities—and even Planned Parenthood—offer counseling to women after an abortion. Women not only have the physical scars from suction tubing, curettes, and other abortion instruments, but they also have mental scars. According to an article on abortion and mental health, more than 85 percent of women who aborted a child reported “at least one negative emotional reaction, including: sorrow, sadness, guilt, regret, grief, and disappointment.” About 35 percent reported five or more of these negative reactions. In another study, as many as 10 percent of surveyed women developed “serious psychiatric complications” after an abortion.
It’s time to stop the pain. As part of the younger generation, I believe we must arm our peers with the knowledge to make better decisions. We must teach them the benefits of choosing abstinence, and we must teach them to value life.
Let us no longer fear those two little words. Let us look upon them with wonder and possibility. What if someday all human beings—born and preborn—were cherished and treated with respect? What if someday the word abortion was something that happened only in the past?
Melissa Pena joined American Life League in December 2014 as development coordinator, providing day-to-day donor support services. Pena is a 3rd year criminology and sociology major at Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida.