Abortion increases the sense of shame in rape victims

By Tom Quiner

A woman is raped.

It’s horrible.

It gets worse, she’s pregnant from her rapist.

Here is the life-altering question: to abort or not to abort?

I am writing on this painful subject because of a legitimate question from my last post. I referred to a rape victim I met who made an extraordinary claim. This woman gave birth to the child of her rapist. Even more, she raised him. She asserts that “surveys” reveal counter-intuitive results, namely, that rape victims who bear the child of their rapist are glad they did; but that women who abort regret it.

A Quiner’s Diner reader asked for more info. I did a little digging. The source for this finding comes from a book called Victims and Victors: Speaking Out About Their Pregnancies, Abortions, and Children Resulting from Sexual Assault, edited by Dr. David C. Reardon, Julie Makimaa and Amy Sobie.

They surveyed rape victims to accumulate some raw data. But even more, far more, they listened to their stories.

I didn’t expect these results. Here’s what Dr. Reardon learned:

“Many of the women in our sample aborted only because they were pressured to do so, and most reported that the abortion only increased their experience of grief and trauma. In contrast, none of the women who carried to term said they wished they had not given birth or that they had chosen abortion instead. Many of these women said that their children had brought peace and healing to their lives.”

Irrational, isn’t it? A baby should be a symbol of hate, not love, for victims of rape. That is what our intuition says.

Dr. Reardon learned from victims themselves that the opposite was true:

“Abortion increases the woman’s sense of isolation and shame by allowing others to pretend the problem doesn’t exist. By getting rid of the pregnancy, which is a reminder of the sexual assault, it allows other people to ignore the woman’s need for understanding and honest exploration and resolution of what she has been through.”

Here’s what hits me like a ton of bricks. Advocates of abortion “rights” club us over the head with the need for abortion on behalf of victims of rape and incest. Dr. Reardon’s research reveals that they’re just plain wrong.

By the way, his study includes victims of incest.

Somehow, love for human life is ultimately more therapeutic, more powerful, than hate for the rapist.

Love trumps hate, something Jesus always said.

Dr. Reardon gives us a cautionary warning:

“Population controllers have exploited people’s compassion for rape and incest victims to weaken abortion laws and gain acceptance for abortion on demand. It’s time to give these women a chance to speak out for themselves and let the truth be known.”

To the victims of rape and incest, I can simply say I’m so very sorry for your pain.

I hope this post serves a purpose.


  1. rcaamo on August 22, 2012 at 8:16 am

    Just reading your article brings much pain. I could not even begin to imagine the pain of the victim physical, mental and emotional. I too can only say I am sorry. Abortion is hardly a rational issue to be debated. No amount of data seems to slow the tide of those who have only one thing in mind: population suppression. Behind the idea of the “right” of choice is a huge machine of those who work towards a goal of only 500 million on earth and no more. It is time to rid the earth of the “refuse” who use up the earth’s resources. Canada has just passed a law to declare personhood at birth only. That is in response to introduce a law to declare personhood from conception being considered here. Conception from rape or incest will no doubt follow the woman no matter what she chooses. From this study it seems that there is resolution and redemption in giving birth. It seems logical and true. A child with all its innocence is always a gift from God. I do believe that God understands us better than we understand ourselves. He knows how weak and fragile we have become through original sin. We often make a mess of our lives and too often others make that mess for us. We have the grace and assurance of God’s Providence to encourage and support us on. It is our duty to approach the throne of God for forgiveness to have all sin forgiven, but not to have the evil declared a good by law or psychologists. For the extreme cases of rape and incest, they deserve our total support and understanding.

    • quinersdiner on August 22, 2012 at 10:12 am

      It’s a very painful subject, frankly, not one I like writing about. Thanks for your excellent insights.

    • Bob Vance on August 22, 2012 at 12:08 pm

      Historically, based on the Bible, life begins at birth, i.e. first breath. God breathed life into Adam.

      If you go by your OT Laws, abortion can result in a fine (hence not murder):
      “ex 21:22 And if men strive together, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart, and yet no harm follow, he shall be surely fined, according as the woman’s husband shall lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine.”.

      A lot has been done in recent years to turn it around to show where the Bible is Pro-Life, but I don’t see it. As I have said here many times, I am against abortion – just not on religious grounds.

      • quinersdiner on August 22, 2012 at 12:51 pm

        I’ll put up the basis for Catholic’s view that human life begins at the point of conception. Thanks for your insights. Always thought-provoking.

  2. Bob Vance on August 22, 2012 at 11:24 am

    I don’t think pro-choice people are evil or have secret agendas. I think they just disagree on when life begins.

    I find it sad that there seems no room for compromise on this issue. For me, if we could eliminate just one abortion it would be a step in the right direction. I think there is enough support to not allow any abortions after the first trimester, but it seems it has to be all or nothing.

    • rcaamo on August 22, 2012 at 1:00 pm

      “Pro Choice” people are not evil per se, maybe forced,uninformed, selfish, misguided, naive or gullible. It is the abortion that is evil. Either it is murder or it is not. The child is a person or is not. In case of doubt, which is becoming much less each day, it is better to side with the innocent. A good sociological study might reveal a lot about what is really going on in the abortion sphere. Who, when, why, how, what, and how often, would reveal a lot about the roots of this calamity. There is only but one choice: to choose the good. One may pick an evil, but it is never a right! This is an absolute! Yes, ALL of it! Better we tend in the right direction as soon as possible. Forty years of madness have sucked the life out of this country and the world. Now, not only is it legal, but those who disagree have to pay for it too. There is only one choice here…and it is to do the right thing. With all the contraceptives out there, how is it that there are still so many abortions being performed (3,000 a day in the USA/125,000 in the world)? I can’t pay for a dentist, but I have to pay for every other indiscretion that is performed because it has become politically the law and popular. Eugenics is the mind of this movement. Population control is the means. Choice to abort is never a right. “Tell the king what he should do not what he can do!” (Thomas More) Too bad Henry VIII was not given that advice for from there, history was not reformed but rather transformed into “believe whatever you want.” No one can force anyone else. People will do as they will whatever the excuse. I can’t force my opinion on anyone, nor should anyone force the costs on me. 500 years of the systematic breakdown of Christendom and 40 years of abortion legislation will make this an even more difficult case to correct. Nevertheless, what is, is. All debate on this subject is basically political and emotional for logically, historically, legally it would lose. The Supreme Court did this country wrong by deciding for everybody and stopping the real debate.

      • quinersdiner on August 22, 2012 at 1:21 pm

        Regarding your last sentence, in a sense the real debate would have progressed along less divisive lines had the Supreme butted out. Something like 45 states had laws on the books protecting life. The Supreme Court divided this country in profound ways that will be felt for centuries, should our Republic last that long.

      • onetenthblog on August 22, 2012 at 10:13 pm

        “One may pick an evil, but it is never a right! This is an absolute! Yes, ALL of it! Better we tend in the right direction as soon as possible… Forty years of madness have sucked the life out of this country and the world. Now, not only is it legal, but those who disagree have to pay for it too.”

        Not adding more to your exceptional post except when doubt fogs our judgement to articulate what’s right and wrong, even on the issue of abortion in America, always ask God’s help. (If any of you needs wisdom to know what you should do, you should ask God, and he will give it to you. God is generous to everyone and doesn’t find fault with them. James 1:5)…

        It is when we let others define what the communities of faithfuls should believe, then anger seeps in slowly and then builds– I guess it is this sense of betrayal that’s driving all the noise now. I guess it’s this sense of anger that’s also forcing people to commit and defend their own narrative of right and wrong.

        I think it’s good to debate and put forth our opinion, but let’s also have time to reflect on the issue according to the Bible. One of the best attribute of the Christian faithful is that of the peaceable. Always!

        All the best!

        • quinersdiner on August 22, 2012 at 10:16 pm

          Thanks for the encouraging words.

  3. onetenthblog on August 22, 2012 at 2:28 pm

    “A baby should be a symbol of hate, not love, for victims of rape. That is what our intuition says”

    It should change! Hope more and more good people would be willing to change the narrative on this very sensitive issue.

    My view on abortion is very much similar to American conservatives (aka GOP)– No abortion except when the life of mothers at risk from complications during pregnancy. BUT as your post advocates: Christian love trumps hate and godlessness, something Jesus always said. And I’m not here to condemn anyone….

    One thing, when it comes to the politics of rape-related pregnancy figures– everyone’s sugar-coating including pro-abortion advocates. Example here http://www.lifenews.com/2011/02/22/planned-parenthood-in-kansas-ignored-164-cases-of-child-rape/ Sad but true 🙁

    • quinersdiner on August 22, 2012 at 3:11 pm

      Very sad. Good comments on your part. Thanks for writing.

    • Bob Vance on August 22, 2012 at 5:17 pm

      IMHO, Phill Kline does little for the Pro-Life cause. As for PP having employees who are either ignorant or openly break the law, from what I have read, PP corrects the problems when they occur. I do not think attacking PP is the way to go to stop abortion, because they do alot more than provide abortions. You need to change the laws.

      As an analogy, a few Priests in the Catholic Church commited crimes that were actually covered up by Church superiors. Are we going to close down the Catholic Church?

      • onetenthblog on August 22, 2012 at 9:08 pm

        ” I do not think attacking PP is the way to go to stop abortion”

        Oh look, people can google for themselves to be honest, and I think majority of conservative readers do have fixed views on this issue… I was merely commenting on the current politics of rape-related pregnancy figures. (Was I off the mark with my link, no?)

        As for ‘stopping’ abortion, well pro-life groups need to build mandate, momentum for now. No, attacking the PP would not have to be the way forward, but educating people.

        (Urging PP transparency, as part of big-govt agenda, on the other hand is another thing; it’s, well, everyone’s business IMHO. It doesn’t need to be about punishing health services linked to abortion providers after all)

        “As an analogy, a few Priests in the Catholic Church commited crimes that were actually covered up by Church superiors. Are we going to close down the Catholic Church?”

        Are you thinking of closing down the Catholic Church? A bit off the mark here, don’t you think 🙁

      • Bob Vance on August 22, 2012 at 9:34 pm

        I guess I have a soft spot for PP because my wife went there long ago when we first got married for check-ups and such. That does not mean I think they are above the law.

        My point on the Catholic Church line was that you can’t let a few bad apples spoil the whole bunch. In no way do I want to shut down the Catholic Church. I will have grandchildren soon who I am sure will be rasied Catholic.

  4. gladwellmusau on August 23, 2012 at 8:31 am

    One evil does not justify another. God allows such a life to be conceived despite the circumstances and I believe He extends grace in those circumstances.