Majority of Women Say More Emotional, Financial Support Would Have Stopped Them From Having an Abortion

By Published on May 15, 2023

A majority of women who have undergone abortions would not have had one if they received more emotional or financial support, according to a study from Charlotte Lozier Institute, a pro-life nonprofit “research and education institute of Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America.”

CLI’s study, released Monday, found that 60% of participants would have continued their pregnancy if they were given more emotional or financial support and 24% expressed that their decision was “coerced” or “unwanted.” The study surveyed 1,000 women in October 2022, with 226 responding that they had an abortion; researchers found that pressure to have an abortion is closely tied to negative impacts on mental health, and only 33% of women who indicated that they wanted their abortion.

“Of 226 women reporting a history of abortion, 33% identified it as wanted, 43% as accepted but inconsistent with their values and preferences, and 24% as unwanted or coerced,” the study explained. “Sixty percent reported they would have preferred to give birth if they had received more support from others or had more financial security.”

Tessa Longbons, CLI’s senior research associate and a co-author of the study, told the Daily Caller News Foundation that the 60% of women looking for more support during pregnancy “stood out the most” to researchers.

“[W]e saw that yes, many women said it was the right decision given the circumstances, but abortion was not something they wanted,” Longbons said. “In fact, many women felt pressured into it. So it shows that for many women, this is something that they feel circumstances are driving them to, and the pro-life movement wants to change the circumstances so that no woman feels like she has to undergo an abortion because she has no other choice, or because she’s feeling pressured into it.”

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The 226 respondents were asked 11 questions regarding their satisfaction and circumstances surrounding the abortion, with a completion rate of 91%, according to the study.

CLI’s study also found that only the 33% who explicitly said that they wanted abortions reported “positive emotions or mental health gains,” while all other women said that they experienced negative effects on their mental health following the procedure.

“[W]omen who described their abortion to as unwanted, coerced or inconsistent with their own values and preferences have negative emotions from the abortion and negative impacts on their mental health,” Longbons told the DCNF. “So abortion wasn’t actually helping them. It was harming them.”

 

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