Suicidal Fruit: What Happens When the Mental Health Profession Fails Post Abortive Women.

The #AmericanPsychologicalAssociation asserts that there is no causal link between abortion and depression (which is ridiculous anyway, because virtually no social science research can ever assert causation. But that’s a different TED Talk). And a recent talk in Ireland by Dr. Lucy Johnstone of the British Psychological Society actually recommended abortion as a treatment for the trauma of unwanted pregnancy. (Because the British have always had the best interests of the Irish people in mind….) 

Sadly, 21 yo Jade Rees had a very different experience. After a tough breakup, she decided to terminate her pregnancy at 4months. Her suicide note explained that her decision to celebrate her right to choose women’s health care left her “upset and distressed.” She detailed how the abortion exacerbated her long struggle with depression and an eating d/o. Grieving and alone, she hung herself while listening to Ed Sheeran’s song “Small Bump.”  She leaves behind a 2yo she felt that she was unworthy to raise.

If the psychological establishment respected science and basic compassion instead of ideology, someone might have suggested to Ms. Rees that some people truly do regret their abortions and that abortion can, for some, make difficult circumstances even more painful to bear. Unfortunately, because the only message that women like Ms. Rees hear is that they have only cause for celebration, or at least relief, after their abortion, women who experience emotional pain following termination are made to feel crazy. Women like Ms. Rees end up being gaslighted by the very clinicians who should be there to hold her hand through her pain.

Shame on my colleagues for their cowardice and capitulation to the abortion industry. You feckless sycophants. How many women have to die before you wake up?

As a pro-life mental health professional, this issue is especially close to my heart. I ask you to please keep all women who are experiencing the pain of abortion in your prayers, every day. And, while you’re at it, please say a special prayer for Ms. Rees. That she might find, in God’s arms, the affirmation, mercy, and healing that my profession could not bear to extend to her in this life.

If you or someone you love is experiencing the pain of post-abortion regret, please visit Project Rachel.There is no judgment. Only love and a path to healing.

Think Contraception Prevents Abortion? New Study Says, “You’re Wrong.”

shutterstock--The PillYou’ve probably heard the slogan, “You can’t be opposed to both abortion and contraception.”  Or, alternatively, the accusation,  “If you opposed abortion, why don’t you support greater access to contraception?”  The idea, of course, being that if everyone was on the Pill, we wouldn’t have abortions anymore.  Well, a new study by Britain’s most prominent abortion provider, British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS), shows just how wrong that is.

It turns out that over half of women (51%) who procure abortions do so because of the failure of their contraceptive method.  In fact, the study of over 60,000 women, found that contraceptive use contributes to a greater likelihood that women will have later term abortions (20 weeks and later) because they assume they can’t get pregnant using contraception and miss early pregnancy signs as a result.  Late-term abortions are not only more morally objectionable to the general public, they also carry higher health risks for the mother.

In response the study, Anna Furedi, BPAS chief executive said, “Our data shows women cannot control their fertility through contraception alone, even when they are using some of the most effective methods. Family planning is contraception and abortion. Abortion is birth control that women need when their regular method lets them down.”

This finding comes on the heels of an earlier study that found that when the UK decreased funding for contraceptive services, unintended  pregnancy rates actually decreased as well–in direct contradiction to dire predictions by family planning agencies.

And again, the reason for this is that the efficacy of artificial means of family planning are oversold.  Women are led to believe that as long as they are “practicing safe sex” and using one form of artificial contraception or another, they cannot get pregnant.  But because of  both the built-in risk of method failure and life circumstances that prevent perfect use of contraceptives in the real world–many women using artificial means of contraception can find themselves pregnant and scared.  They are, in essence, being set up to feel that they need abortion by the very agencies that promote contraception and abortion services.

Again, Ms. Furedi says, “When you encourage women to use contraception, you give them the sense that they can control their fertility – but if you do not provide safe abortion services when that contraception fails you are doing them a great disservice.”

The research is clear.  Artificial contraception use increases the likelihood of both unintended pregnancy and abortion and, in fact, increases the potential that a woman will choose a higher-risk, later-term abortion because of her misplaced confidence in her method of artificial contraception.

Despite what the anti-science left would have you believe, the only way to be truly opposed to abortion is to oppose artificial contraception and promote life-affirming, relationship-building methods of family planning, like Natural Family Planning and Fertility Awareness Methods. To learn more about you can experience a healthier, happier, and more graceful sexual life, check out Holy Sex! The Catholic Guide To Mind-Blowing, Toe-Curling, Infallible Loving. 

“What’s that? Post-Abortion Syndrome May Exist…? Nevermind.”

This month, many secular psychologists are having an Emily Litella moment.

Prevailing professional “wisdom” on the link between abortion and subsequent psychological problems is that there is none.   The official position of the American Psychological Association is, “Nothing to see here, folks, let’s all just move along shall we?”

Well, things are not quite as clear cut as the APA might like you to believe.  First, in 2008, a 30 year longitudinal study of 500 women found that post-abortive women had about a 30% higher likelihood of subsequent mental problems than non-abortive women (the “attributable risk” estimate of 1.5-5.5% is a less reliable statistic that attempts to calculate how much abortion, itself, without considering any other factor, contributes to mental health problems.  It is a deceptively small percentage because  so many factors influence mental health that almost all such analyses yield very small numbers.)

Now, the July issue of Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences describes a review of all abortion and mental health literature between 1995 and 2011.  Their findings?  Out of 36 studies reviewed, 13 found post-abortive women at higher risk of depression, anxiety, or substance abuse.  The review also found  that while short-term anxiety and depression were more common among women who miscarried than women who had abortions, longer term anxiety and depression were much more common among post-abortive women than women who miscarried.  That makes sense considering that factors surrounding each set of circumstances (i.e., in miscarriage, women are encouraged to grieve.  With abortion, women are told they have nothing to grieve.  It takes time for the denial to wear off and the emotional disturbance to be recognized.)

The researchers conclude by saying that more research needs to be done.  That’s true.  It would just be nice if the professional organizations would stop issuing politically motivated statements until all the data is in.

By the way, that incredible silence you hear?  That’s the media rushing to cover this story.



Why Doesn’t the Catholic Church Just Get with the Times?

Contraception, abortion, women’s ordination, gay marriage.  These represent just a few of the issues the Church is regularly criticized for being on the “wrong side” of.

So, why can’t the Church change?

Today’s episode of More2Life Radio was titled, “Stand Your Ground.”  We looked at the challenge of knowing when we need to draw a line in the sand and when we need to be more flexible.  Part of that discussion involved an interview with Bishop Jeffrey Montforton of Steubenville (former rector of Detroit’s Sacred Heart Seminary) about why the Church can’t just modernize.

The answer to both questions (when do we change and when can the Church change) is really the same.    It all comes down to knowing who you are.  As a Church or as individuals, you can change the things that don’t jeopardize the core of your mission–the heart of your identity–but you can’t change the things that do or you cease to exist in any meaningful way.

Catholics have been given a special gift.  God has shared with us, directly, his truth, his vision of what the world was intended to be and is destined to become again.  He has communicated to us what he intended the world to look like from the beginning of time and he has tasked us with the mission of doing whatever we can to make the world fall more in line with that vision.  In other words, it is not the Catholic Church’s mission to look more like the world.  It is the Catholic Church’s job to make the world look more like the Catholic Church–a community of love dedicated to using our time, treasure, talent and selves to work for the good of others and, in the process, become the best version of ourselves.

We can’t fulfill that mission if we accommodate to the culture.   True, we can change things that aren’t at the center of that blueprint for building the Kingdom that God has given us.  We can move some furniture around.  We can change some words here and there as long as we don’t tamper with the meaning behind those words.  But we can’t be a prophetic sign of what the world is supposed to be by allowing ourselves to become what the world already is!

But, of course, there are objections to this.  I can think of two huge ones off-hand.

1.  Oh, Sure!  The world should look just like the Church!?!  You mean we should all be pedophiles?

Answer:  I’m glad you brought that up.  This is a perfect example of how the Church accommodated to the world.  Seriously, what’s more worldly than committing sexual sin and covering it up?  In fact, the reason the world is so angry at the Church for the scandal is because it didn’t behave like Church.  The world WANTS there to be a sign of goodness in the world (the world hates it, but wants it all the same–like kids and rules).  The world NEEDS a sign of grace in the world and for the world to think that the Church isn’t a sign of grace is infuriating to the world.  The relationship between the world and the Church is like the relationship between an abusive husband and his wife; the more the wife tries to accommodate to her abusive husbands expectations, the more the abusive husband comes to hate the woman.  Only when she stands up to his abuse is there any hope.

2.  But Catholicism is just one brand of Christianity.  Lots of other Christians have modernized their teaching.

Answer:  Yes, well, that’s what happens to the branches that fall off the tree.  Jesus Christ created a Church (Matt 16:18) and entrusted to that Church the vision of what the world should look like.  It is the Church’s job to pass that vision–that Tradition (capital T)– from one generation to the next.  Apostolic succession is the means of transmitting that vision.  Those Churches that preserve Apostolic Succession maintain the Tradition, the vision of what the world must become.  Those Christian and Christian-flavored sects that cut themselves off of the apostolic vine lose the Tradition and end up taking their cues more from the world than from Christ’s original vision.  At best, the messages of these various latter-day Christian sects represent  the seeds sown on rocky soil.  Their work sprouts buds that quickly die if they are not transplanted into more fertile soil (Matt 13).  In fact, we see exactly this.  Sociologists of religion show that there is immense turnover in Evangelical mega-churches.  Their gospel-lite message attracts new seekers but their disconnection from the vine causes the new shoots to starve and die.    And that’s the best case scenario.   At worst, these sects sow weeds that threaten to choke out the vision, weeds that will be gathered up with the wheat but then burned on the last day (Matt 13:24-30).

Belief in the Sun-god.

In his encyclical, Lumen Fidei, Pope Francis quotes St. Justin Martyr as saying that “no one ever gave his life because of his belief in the Sun.”   That’s because worship of the sun-god was a secular religion.  It didn’t exist to challenge the culture.  It existed to give people a safe way to vent their spiritual feelings. That vision of church is what most people imagine church to be even today.    That has never been the mission of the Catholic Church. To paraphrase Flannery O’Connor, if that’s all church is then to hell with it.   We exist to hold up the truth.  To be a sign for the Truth and, if necessary, to be willing to die to defend that Truth.

The Church cannot change because if it changes it ceases to be Church and becomes an exercise in what Cardinal Ratzinger once referred to as “spiritual auto-eroticism.” God know, no one needs more of that.

The Right Question

When we encounter some teaching that offends us, annoys us, irritates us; some teaching that the Church stubbornly insists it can’t change and makes us say, “Why doesn’t the Church change that already?”  it is best to recognize that the better question is, “Why is this teaching so central to God’s vision of what the world must become and, having discovered that, how can I get on board and do my part in promoting that vision?”

We do not ask how we can change the Church.  We ask how the Church can change us.



How do you make a man disappear?

Put him on trial for capital murder.

The way reporters are handling the case of Kermit Gosnell (by not handling it at all)  is a travesty even considering the travesty that constitutes journalism today.  I’m used to the Liberal Ministers of Truthiness(TM) downplaying the March for Life or other Pro-life stories.  I’ve even largely come to accept that is just the way it is. But THIS?  This is an unconscionable conspiracy of silence.  We’re talking about a man who was responsible for “aborting” hundreds of  all-but full term babies by delivering them, cutting their spine with scissors while they screamed in pain, and pocketing over a million dollars a year for the effort.  This is the stuff Bond villains are made of.

Whatever you think about abortion, this is a story.  Except, of course, it’s about abortion–the Mainstream Media’s only Sacrament–and heresy is not tolerated by the High Priests of the Church of the Fourth Estate. Speaking as your local, licensed mental health professional, this goes way beyond simple denial.  This is the news media committing the same crime of covering up unpleasant truths they are only too happy to–justly–go after our bishops for.  What a bunch of hypocrites.  When it’s their religion that’s committing crimes–their sacrament at stake–willful ignorance is the cardinal virtue.

I see some people are starting to notice and be outraged.  I would like to respectfully ask you to join the growing voices protesting these ostriches masquerading as men and women of the vaunted “press.”  Well, we don’t have to rely on old media any more.  The Patheos journalism of religion blog, Get Religion is on the case.  Please share their post on this atrocity on your FB page, twitter, blogs, and other social media.  We must do whatever we can to shame these ersatz professionals into doing their pathetic jobs.   The babies who were murdered by this monster cannot cry out.  The women abused by this murderer are being silenced by the very people who should be advocating for them.  We cannot let their pain go unanswered.

It’s a small thing.  Share this story.  Spread the word.  Shame these bastards into doing their job.

You Seeng Sexy Moosic. Vee Mek BAYbees, Da? (or, And Now We’ve [truly] Come, to the End of the Road…)

So, if you were the president of Russia and your people were not having enough  children to support your social infrastructure, what would you do?

A). Enact legislation and initiate a public information campaign designed to curtail the scandalous abortion rates affecting your country.

B). Hire Boyz II Men to reprise their greatest romantic hits in the hopes of indirectly increasing  fertility rates.

If you guessed B then (God help us) you’d be absolutely right.