Parents try to hide things from them, but somehow children KNOW what is happening in their homes.There is no agreement about when or if a child should be told of an abortion in the family. It is reasonable to assume that if others know about it, then children who have aborted siblings probably will find out sooner or later.
- Children do not deal with things well if they find out from someone else, or accidentally.
- When talking with children, it should be made clear that their mother did not intend to hurt a baby.
- Some people are crude enough to say cruel things to children, so you must be prepared to deal with it.
- Adolescence and pre-teen years are the most vulnerable and they may strike out at parents after finding out about an abortion.
- It may be necessary to seek professional counselling if children are having trouble dealing with an abortion in the family.
Children seem to know what is happening in their homes. Parents try to hide things from them, but somehow they figure things out.
Children everywhere are becoming aware of abortion(s) that their mothers have had or are talking about having. Parents should take great care in dealing with this issue and may even choose to seek professional counsel.
Dr Edward Sheridan, a psychiatrist at Georgetown in the U.S., describes what many other counsellors have found -children he sees who have problems draw pictures of their family with 'missing persons' present. When asked "Who is that?" he is often told "That's my best friend."
The child is usually unaware that there has been an aborted sibling, but when Sheridan asks parents about the 'missing person' they acknowledge the abortion.
The surviving child can be intuitively aware of something they were never told.
Abortion sibling survivor
Abortion survivor Sarah Smith says she often felt great loneliness. Sarah said "I battled with severe depression and found myself dying of anorexia nervosa at age 12, when my mother knew it was time to tell me the truth.
"She sat next to me and took my hand and looked me in the eyes and said, 'Sarah, you are a twin. I aborted your twin brother and tried to abort you. Please know I did not know what I was doing and I pray someday you are able to forgive me. I love you and need you to know that you are a welcome part of our family.'" Read Sarah's story here.
Experts say that children do not deal with these things well if they find out from someone else, or accidentally.
Better that children don't find out accidently
Experts say that children do not deal with these things well if they find out from someone else, or accidentally. It has been found that children can deal better with things they learn about straight from the parent.
If dealt with as with any other unhappy subject that effects them - matter of factly, (not hysterically) letting the child know that Mother is sad because the child is gone - most children should be able to handle it if they are also allowed to ask questions and have their questions answered.
It should be made very clear that mother did what she thought she had to do at the time, that mother did not intend to hurt a baby.If it is decided to tell children about an abortion, it should be made very clear that their mother did what she thought she had to do at the time, that she did not intend to hurt a baby.
Double talk (euphemisms) such as product of conception ( POC), embryo, foetus, foetal tissue, and other words used instead of baby, are nothing but the abortion providers' 'double talk' and should be avoided.
It is recommended that the mother not let anyone destroy her relationship with her child by saying that she deliberately killed a baby. However, since there are some people who are crude enough to say cruel things to children, you must prepare to deal with it.
In the vast majority of cases, the reason a woman chooses abortion is because of pressure of one kind or other.
Adolescents and pre-teens must be reassured that they are loved, reassured that you did not want them to die too. Proper communication is vital if you are to get past the hurt feelings.Emotionally vulnerable teens
Adolescence and pre-teen years are the most vulnerable because they are going through so many hormonal changes in their bodies. These young teens may strike out, become disruptive and develop behavioural changes. See also A Wounded Generation.
Some young teenage girls may become pregnant, thinking to replace the aborted baby. Read about "Replacement babies and teenage pregnancy" here.
Children are predisposed to love their mother no matter what she has done - she is mother and nothing and no-one can change that. Proper communication is necessary in order to get past grief and hurt feelings.
If a mother has a burden of guilt that causes her to lash out at the other children she has, it is the abuse that children cannot deal with. They feel unjustly punished and that brings on the rebellion. Read more about abortion and child abuse here.
It may be necessary to seek pro- fessional help. Please do not just assume that it will not bother your children if they know about it.
Children are not fully able to understand that their mother's emotions have been damaged so badly. They will not be able to understand that she does not realise what it is doing to them if she closes herself off and is unable to show them her love.
If children are having trouble dealing with an abortion in the family, it may be necessary for a parent to seek professional counselling. Clinical experience has shown that most children are not able to handle the confusion and grief they feel without help. It is important that the counsellor is one who is sensitive to children's hurts.