How to Support a Friend Considering Abortion

A woman consoling her pregnant friend who is considering an abortion

What do you do if your friend tells you they want to have an abortion? Maybe you’re pro-choice, and you believe every woman should have this option. Maybe you’re pro-life, and you want to help your friend but aren’t sure you can be involved in an abortion decision. Perhaps you don’t know what you believe, and you have no idea how to handle this request or what your responsibilities might be. Keep reading to discover what you should consider and how you can help someone facing an unplanned pregnancy.

The first thing to remember is that your friend contacted you, and that means they trust you. An unplanned pregnancy, and potentially an abortion, is a very personal matter. Bravo to you for being the kind of person who can be trusted with weighing in on such a delicate and serious decision.

Support Can Mean Many Things

Your first temptation might be to assure your friend that you’ll “support their decision.” That seems very reasonable, and like a good thing, but can actually be very detrimental. Many women choose abortion because they feel they have no support. If they’re reaching out to you, they may be hoping that you will offer to walk with them through their pregnancy, be there for them after the baby is born, and not abandon them because they have now become a mother. Instead of rushing in with a blanket message of “support,” try asking some questions. What do you want to do? Tell me more about the situation. How can I help you discover the right choice for you?

Carefully Consider All Options

Next, encourage your friend to review all of their options. Often, the first option that comes to mind and other choices (like parenting or adoption) are immediately rejected. Instead of assuming that abortion is the only choice, encourage your friend to really envision what the other two options might look like. Can you, and their family and other friends support them in a parenthood journey? Have they ever thought about becoming a mother and whether they would like that? Have they discussed this with the baby’s father? Next, consider adoption. Many people have great sympathy for someone in their circle who is unable to have children, or they know someone who is an amazing parent. Would this person be interested in adopting a baby? Or, would they consider choosing a couple through an adoption agency?

A woman is embracing her distressed friend

It can be hard to talk about options. Often, a young woman is very upset about being pregnant. She is scared of everything that will change due to a pregnancy. She may not be feeling well because of early pregnancy symptoms. However, she asked you for help. The best help you can give her is to help her ensure she will not regret whichever choice she makes.

Visit a Local Pregnancy Center

If your friend is open to it, encourage her to visit her local pregnancy medical clinic. These organizations can provide a pregnancy test and ultrasound for free. Getting an ultrasound is extremely important. Your friend needs to know how far along she is and whether or not the baby is located in her uterus. An ectopic pregnancy can be life-threatening, and an abortion will not impact a pregnancy located outside of her uterus. Further, the pain from an ectopic pregnancy may be masked by the pain of the abortion, which could delay her seeking emergency care. If she is unwilling to visit a pregnancy center, ask her to review the abortion health and safety checklist, to be sure she has carefully considered all factors.

Provide Unwavering Support

Perhaps you have talked to your friend about options, and offered to take her to a pregnancy center, and she still insists she wants an abortion. The next thing you do is really going to depend on your personal convictions surrounding the abortion issue. If you are against abortion, and you believe the child within her is a living human being, it may be wrong for you to drive her to the abortion clinic, help her procure abortion pills, or help her pay for the abortion. Does that mean you need to become upset with her and refuse to talk to her ever again? Of course not! If she decides to go through with the abortion, she will need you more than ever. Beyond the physical pain of the abortion, she may experience deep psychological pain and regret. You, her friend, can certainly be there for her as she recovers both emotionally and physically from this event.

However, perhaps you personally have no objection to abortion. Or, you are ambivalent enough about it that driving her to her appointment doesn’t conflict with your beliefs. If you choose to drive your friend to her abortion appointment, it is vital that you make sure she knows you will walk out the door at any time. If she is uncomfortable, if the staff is unpleasant, or if the facility is dirty or unkempt – she should consider leaving. At no point should anyone pressure her into completing the abortion if she is starting to think about changing her mind.

If your friend chooses to do a chemical abortion and changes her mind after taking the first pill, you can encourage her to contact Abortion Pill Reversal. They can help her reverse her abortion and achieve a healthy pregnancy. 

Being a friend to someone who is considering, undergoing, or recovering from an abortion is tough. However, it can be an amazing time to truly support someone you love and perhaps help them make a choice that will change their future.

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