On May 2, 2022, the decision to overturn Roe v Wade by the Supreme Court was compromised, when a brief, written by Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, was leaked to a news outlet. In his brief, Justice Alito wrote, “Roe was egregiously wrong from the start”. No one is ever prepared for the fallout from the shockwaves that are inevitable from this kind of misfortune. Since the “leak”, the topic around the proverbial water cooler at every place of business consistently included conversation about “the leak”.

The fight for life in the womb has been a point of contention long before any of us were born. What should be one of the safest places for a human being, has become a battleground at the highest level of the court system in the United States of America. On January 22, 1973, Roe v Wade became a landmark court decision in which the court ruled, a woman has the right to abort her child, based on the right to privacy protected by the US Constitution’s 14th amendment. This set off a flurry of adverse debates in a battle for personhood.

As the issue ramps up and emotions run high, it is a good idea to understand your own sentiment tied to the term “abortion”. Even though Roe v Wade is a controversial subject, it has always been a hot topic of conversation. ‘Abortion’ tends to consistently dredge up contrary ideologies in the news, in the courts, and even in our private homes. This conversation also stirs up strong emotions and triggers the post abortive woman. The only protection against more trauma, is the capacity to be aware and discern the emotions when triggered. Next there is then a need to have a plan in place to deal with the triggered emotions.

Triggers are tricky, in as much as, not everyone is triggered by the same information. For example, someone may be completely benign to emotional upheaval when having a conversation about Roe v Wade or the Supreme Court. However, they may be sensitive to sights or sounds and even smells. The abortion wounded woman may become triggered when helping with a baby shower or seeing someone else who is pregnant. Even a certain day of the year known as anniversary trauma, can put the individual into panic mode. Therefore, it is extremely important that our Helpline Coaches, at H3Helpline, pay close attention to the unique needs of each caller. Every individual’s multi-faceted history deserves unconditional consideration and empathy from our Helpline Coaches. Every Helpline Coach has experienced some of the same trauma and triggers these callers are experiencing. Part of their training is to bring the conversation with the vulnerable individual to an adequately safe discussion. The first priority with a caller is to let them know, they are not alone.

Another hurdle for a post abortive individual, is conversing with someone who has never had an abortion. These discussions can be uncomfortable at best. Trying to maneuver through this topic of abortion is somewhat of a land mine and may be difficult for both parties. If you find yourself in one of these discussions, a good way to navigate this conversation is to try to show grace and just listen without judgement. For the post abortive woman, they are hurting and just need to know they are not alone. Knowing their information is safe and will be held in utmost confidence can lead to their first step of healing and is truly important. For the individual who has never experienced an abortion, they will need to know that their help is needed and appreciated.

The conversations may cause a whirlwind of emotional and physical changes for a woman, it is always a good idea to know the side effects most referred to as Post Abortion Stress Syndrome (PASS). These are just a few of the symptoms which may be present.

1. Regret

2. Shame

3. Guilt

4. Grief

5. Depression/Anxiety

6. Suicide

7. Self Harm

8. Anger/Fits of Rage

Knowing how and why triggers unexpectedly set someone off? It is a response to a deep and forgotten pain they have actively or passively swept under a proverbial rug. Not everyone will display any or all these symptoms but being patient and compassionate with yourself or someone who is experiencing these symptoms is of vital importance.

H3Helpline provides a safe environment for someone suffering from post-abortion syndrome and we will offer resources and support to the caller. As the culture changes, we at H3Helpline understand the importance of speaking truth to our callers, allowing them the ability to make informed decisions about the health of their baby and themselves. Whether you are looking for answers for your pregnancy or have already had an abortion, H3Helpline knows a pregnancy changes a woman, and

we want you to know how valuable you are.