Post Abortion Stress Syndrome (PASS) is a form of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), It shares similar indicators and symptoms, but affects post-abortive women specifically. Those who suffer from PASS can experience intense psychological, emotional, physical, and spiritual distress. For women, abortion is not only a traumatic decision, it’s a physically traumatic procedure, and the mental pain that comes with it is not any easier to bear.
Raising PASS Awareness
The decades-long debate over the legality of abortion has been the unfortunate reason for the lack of PASS awareness. Political contentions have polarized research efforts, leaving sufferers of Post Abortion Stress Syndrome with little attention. Pro-abortion advocates tend to ignore the traumatizing effects of such a decision, while post abortive women confirm they are not only real but long-lasting. Although abortion may appear to solve an immediate “problem”, it can leave an inevitable trail of pain and suffering. If you’ve experienced one or more of the following symptoms, you may be experiencing Post Abortion Awareness Syndrome.
Symptoms of PASS
Since women are genetically designed to protect and nurture their children, memories from a past abortion may leave the woman feeling guilty. Women may unknowingly convince themselves that they deserve all the bad things that happen in their lives.
It is common to feel tense and anxious after an abortion. Physical symptoms such as dizziness, nausea, accelerated heartbeat, and headaches may also present themselves. Post-abortive women often have trouble sleeping and find themselves in continual worry without explanation.
Many women will deliberately shut down their emotions in order to avoid painful thoughts. They may stop seeing friends and even family members, especially if they are a reminder of the abortion. Sometimes they turn to drugs or alcohol to help numb the hurt.
AVOIDING CHILDREN OR PREGNANT WOMEN
Many post-abortive women tend to avoid things that remind them of their abortion. This could include avoiding pregnant women or children, especially children around the age their own child would have been. They may skip going to baby showers or other events that include pregnant women or children, avoid going down the baby aisle in a store, or go out of their way to avoid a playground.
Some post-abortive women think it would be better to die than to continue feeling the pain and anguish of PASS. Embarrassment leads them to keep these thoughts from their loved ones, making these thoughts very dangerous.
The anniversary of the abortion or the aborted child’s due date can be a source of pain for post-abortive women. These feelings can lead to harmful behaviors.
RELIVING THE ABORTION
Memories of abortion can be haunting. Things like sounds heard during the abortion procedure (such as a vacuum cleaner or a dentist’s drill) can trigger these bad memories. Some women may experience nightmares about it.
WANTING TO GET PREGNANT AGAIN
After any pregnancy loss, it is very normal for a woman to want to get pregnant again. It’s no different for post-abortive women. Some hope to replace the child that was lost during the abortion. Others have a fear of infertility.
Anorexia and bulimia are common eating disorders experienced by post-abortive women. These disorders allow them a false sense of control over their lives and their bodies. Other reasons women go through this is due to an unconscious attempt to make themselves sexually undesirable, and therefore less likely to get pregnant again.
INABILITY TO BOND WITH OTHER CHILDREN
Some post-abortive women experience such guilt that they unconsciously become emotionally distant to their other children, fearing that they might somehow hurt them. This can also cause a fear that their future children will die, which can lead to an unhealthy overprotection of their children.
ALCOHOL AND DRUG USE
Many post-abortive women turn to alcohol or drugs in attempt to forget their memories of an abortion. Unfortunately, the overuse of these substances often leads to other mental, physical, and emotional issues.
There is Hope & Healing For Victims of PASS
Post Abortion Stress Syndrome is a condition that should not be taken lightly. The suffering that accompanies an abortion is unique and painful. If you have experienced any of these symptoms, you are not alone! Our trained staff is here ready to listen and help.
Feel free to contact us by phone at 208-667-5433 or schedule an appointment online.