Not like this is unexpected, but a new literature review published in the Harvard Review of Psychiatry has asked a question— whether “there is an abortion trauma syndrome”— and has found an answer: No.
The review showed that studies that showed a causal link between elective abortion and mental disorders had problems with methodology, including failures to account for confounding variables and issue with sample selection. The conclusion was that, “…The most consistent predictor of mental disorders after abortion remains preexisting disorders, which, in turn, are strongly associated with exposure to sexual abuse and intimate violence. Educating researchers, clinicians, and policymakers how to appropriately assess the methodological quality of research about abortion outcomes is crucial….” (emphasis added).
In other words, the most likely women to have mental health problems after an abortion are those who have preexisting mental health problems before an abortion.
Hence, with this additional evidence, anti-choicers cannot claim that any sort of “abortion trauma” (or “post-abortion”) syndrome exists. To continue to claim otherwise would be just like Wag the Dog; where in the film political operatives invent a war for political purposes, in this case it would be anti-choicers inventing a mental disorder for political purposes. Hence, if they were really desiring to improve women’s mental health, they would stop shouting at, harassing, and hurling invective at women, and would instead work to prevent rape and sexual harassment.
Hat tip to Serena Freewomyn.