[Today’s article is by pro-life atheist author Sarah Terzo. Read more by Sarah on her Substack.]
Earlier this year, an anonymous author published a book called Memoir of a Divorced Man: Lost Innocence, Love, Sex, and Dating in the 1980s.
The author’s story reveals a great deal about abortion, abortion coercion, and a man’s role in abortion decisions.
Encounter in a Hotel Room
The author’s first personal encounter with abortion took place in a motel room with a woman he calls Barb. He and Barb met at a bar. It was New Year’s Eve. The author wasn’t looking for a relationship. It was a one-night stand.
As they were in bed together, kissing and cuddling, Barb pulled away. With tears in her eyes, she told him she couldn’t have sex with him. He asked her why, and she was reluctant to answer. But she was clearly very upset and troubled.
Trying to lighten the mood, he jokingly asked her if she was married. It wasn’t that, she said.
But she still wouldn’t tell him what was wrong. Finally, he asked her if she wanted to leave. She said she wanted to stay, but that she couldn’t bring herself to have sex because he was the first man she’d been with since her abortion. “I’m so confused,” she said.
A Woman Wounded by Abortion
The author told Barb that it was okay – there were things they could do together in bed other than actual intercourse.
He says, “I must have said the right words. Barb pulled me even closer… I again buried my face in those magnificent tits…”
Although he describes feeling a “soft tenderness” for her, after that night, he never saw Barb again.
At the end of the chapter, the author gives this advice to other men: “I have found that many girls will take their clothes off and engage in heavy petting if you assure them that you won’t go all the way.”
He was, therefore, satisfied with the encounter.
An Unplanned Pregnancy
After that, the author was dating a woman he calls Wanda.
Wanda was initially reluctant to sleep with him. He says that “To Wanda, making love was just that, making love. She couldn’t understand the recreational aspects of having sex.”
According to the author, Wanda had been following a path of “spiritual celibacy” when he met her. He talked her into a sexual relationship, telling her that, “To deny our sexuality is to deny that we are human. Sex is the celebration of life.”
These words became ironic when she discovered she was pregnant.
A Textbook “Pro-Choice” Response
Wanda told the author about her pregnancy over the phone. He asked her, “What do you want to do?” and she responded by asking him what he wanted.
The author says:
What does she mean? It’s not my choice. Then thunder claps, and I know that it is. I also know that I must answer quickly, leaving no pause for her to doubt my decision.
“I’ll support your decision, either way,” I say, which tells her that I’m not ready to be a father, and that I can live with an abortion.
“There really isn’t any other choice,” she says, and I hear her sigh.
Is that disappointment in her voice?
By pro-choice standards, his response was perfect. “I’ll support your decision either way,” is the ideal “pro-choice” response. It is exactly how the pro-choice movement teaches men to respond to abortion.
His answer is exactly what the pro-choice movement tells men to say.
However, both partners knew what “I’ll support your decision either way” really meant. The author had absolutely no doubt what he was saying. He was saying that abortion was what he wanted.
The decision was not being made by Wanda – it was being made by him.
He was telling her he wouldn’t take responsibility for the pregnancy, didn’t want the baby, and wouldn’t stand by her to raise the child. That was the unspoken message beneath the “correct,” pro-choice words.
This is a case where “it’s your choice” actually meant “it’s your problem.” There is no support coming. There is no encouragement to have the baby. The author will not be there for her and doesn’t care about her and his child.
Rationalizing an Abortion
Wanda believed she was pregnant with a human being but excused an abortion through her spiritual beliefs. Her baby wasn’t really dying—her child would reincarnate and come back into the world in the future.
She convinces herself (and attempts to convince the author) that experiencing an abortion will lead to spiritual growth:
To Wanda, the “Life Being” that we had shared in creating was not meant to enter this world. When its time was right, it would live, but its time was not right.
To her, the experience, for us, was one that would help us grow, an experience that we needed in order to progress in the continual process of learning and striving for perfection. The pain that we felt was a necessary part of this growth process.
I read about the idea that the baby’s soul will return in a later pregnancy in a book recommending “psychic abortions.” None other than abortionist Leah Torres recommended the book—she of “fetuses can’t scream because I cut their cords first” fame. I wrote an article about it here.
The author says he didn’t believe in the humanity of his child:
The decision made by Wanda and me was not a decision about a third life, but, instead, a decision about our own lives.
Just as an appendix is extricated if it becomes destructive to one’s existence, so this ‘new organ’ should be removed if it becomes destructive to the lives that support it.
He admits that this may be how he tried to justify “what I really couldn’t understand.”
He also contradicts himself by saying, “For the past 9 weeks, Wanda had carried my baby. We had shared in the creation of a life, a life that was a beautiful part of both of us, but that would not grow beyond what it was.”
The Painful Aftermath
As for his statement that sex is a celebration of life, the author says, “Those words still hang like a rotting piece of meat in the deepest corner of my mind.”
At home after the abortion, the author watches Wanda break down in tears. He describes, “her face twisting and her body shaking” as she cried. At this point, the author knows that their relationship is over.
The author tells the reader, and by extension, himself, “She’ll be all right… We have made the right decision.”
We don’t know what happened to Wanda—the author left her, and they never kept in touch. At least, he never mentions her again. Apparently, she was left to cope with the abortion on her own.
An Expert at Picking up Women
The author goes on to describe picking up more women in bars. He describes lying about himself to women to get them to sleep with him. He gives advice to men about pickup lines and ways to talk to women in bars and nightclubs to be certain of sex.
At the end of the book, the author mentions that he’s now married, but says nothing about his wife or their relationship. Perhaps his perspective today is different.
Source: Anonymous Memoir of a Divorced Man: Lost Innocence, Love, Sex, and Dating in the 1980s (2023) kindle edition, 71, 70, 73