Feeling Sad After an Abortion: Reasons and Resources to Help

It’s not uncommon for a woman to find themselves feeling sad after an abortion. You’re not alone, and there is help available to work through these feelings.

If you have experienced an abortion, you may experience a range of emotions.

Some women report that at first, they felt relief. They thought that abortion was the solution to the problem of an unwanted or unexpected pregnancy.

And at first, it seemed like everything was going to be fine.

But then, at some point, things changed. What once was relief has now turned to confusion. Then the sadness sets in.

Woman lying in bed staring into space, as if feeling sad or depressed.

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Note: *The Pregnancy Resource Center of Mountain Grove does not provide or refer for abortion services. We provide education on abortion and alternatives. The information on this website is intended for general education purposes only and should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional and medical advice.

How common is it to feel sad after an abortion?

Women may not realize that these emotions have anything to do with their abortion. It can be weeks, months, or even years – but research has shown that sadness is actually a common feeling after an abortion.

For some women, the feelings of sadness can be prolonged and result in depression (sometimes severe) and other mental health symptoms.

Substance abuse is another way some post-abortive women often try to cope with their sadness. (Source.)

The largest study of mental health risks associated with abortion was performed in 2011. The conclusion included this statement:

Women who had undergone an abortion experienced an 81% increased risk of mental health problems.” (Source.)

Graphic with abortion study quote.

Why do women feel sad after an abortion?

There can be many reasons for feeling sad after an abortion. We’ll explore the most common reasons as reported by women we have worked with at the Pregnancy Resource Center.

In the short-term, feelings of sadness can be a result of hormones shifting after an abortion.

But beyond those initial hormone shifts, many women feel sad when they recognize they have suffered a loss. And experiencing any kind of loss can naturally lead to grieving.

Feelings about abortion often change before and after an abortion. A woman who at first felt trapped by their pregnancy, might later on wonder “what might have been”.

Woman staring out the window, daydreaming.

Sometimes women feel sad because they believed they were unable to talk to anyone about their abortion.

They experienced regret and needed someone to process these feelings, but didn’t want anyone to know they had an abortion.

When these feelings of sadness or depression don’t go away, something called “Post Abortion Stress Syndrome” may be diagnosed. This is a type of post-traumatic stress disorder brought on by the abortion and events or circumstances surrounding the event.

Is Post Abortion Stress Syndrome Real?

Here’s the thing: If you type “Post Abortion Stress Syndrome” into your internet search bar, you will find that nearly ALL of the top articles shown to you state that it doesn’t exist.

Why is this? Well, it honestly has a lot to do with politics and the massive amount of money that the abortion industry profits from abortion.

In other words- the powers that be which influence search engines, the media, and politics- don’t want you to know that there are women out there feeling sad after their abortion.

Confused young woman looking at her laptop screen.

Many of these articles are based on biased studies paid for by organizations who support abortion. If people find out there really are negative effects of abortion, it hurts their business.

So, we are not basing all of our statistics and information on those studies, but rather on what we see firsthand in our own Pregnancy Resource Center, and from data supplied by other trusted resources.

And the truth is, there is plenty of evidence that Post Abortion Stress Syndrome is real. Many women (and their partners, too) regret their abortions, and need help walking through their feelings and finding healing.

Graphic with text : Post abortion syndrome is real.

Here are just a few resources that discuss the negative effects women experience after an abortion:

Adverse Psychological Reactions: A Fact Sheet

Clinical Articles on Abortion and its effects

Support After Abortion: Lived Experiences

Long-term Negative Impact of Medication Abortion

Where to find help with sadness after an abortion

Thankfully, there are many organizations- both online and locally, that can help you cope with negative feelings or trauma associated with an abortion.

Woman holding her phone, sending a text.

Need to talk to someone about a past abortion?

We’re here for you.

Check out these links below:

If Not For Grace: With in-person service locations in Kansas City, MO, St. Joseph, MO, and Springfield, MO, and online services.

Helpline: A national after abortion helpline: Call or text 866-721-7881.

Support After Abortion: self-guided materials, and a number you can call OR text: 844-289-4673

If you are in a crisis or feeling suicidal and need immediate help, call or text 988 to speak with the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline immediately.

Read Next:

Possible Complications After Abortion

What to Know About At-Home Abortions

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