In her newly released memoir, The Woman in Me, singer Britney Spears revealed her regret at having an abortion 22 years ago. “To this day, it’s one of the most agonizing things I have ever experienced in my life,” she wrote.
“Spears’ situation is tragic yet not at all unique,” wrote Ruth Institute president, Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, Ph.D. “Abortion regret is common, but kept quiet because it doesn’t fit the ‘abortion is fine all the time at all times with no consequences’ narrative the Sexual Revolution pushes.”
Ruth Institute Research Associate, Fr. Paul Sullins, Ph.D., has studied the high prevalence of abortion-related mental health disorders. These include depression, anxiety disorder, PTSD, suicidality, and substance abuse behaviors. These risks are increased for women who wanted the child, as was the case for Spears.
“The pregnancy was a surprise, but for me, it wasn’t a tragedy,” Spears wrote. “But Justin [Timberlake, her then-boyfriend] definitely wasn’t happy. He said we weren’t ready to have a baby in our lives, that we were way too young.” She was 19. He was 20.
“If it had been left up to me alone, I never would have done it,” Spears said.
“That Spears was pressured to abort, is also sadly common,” Morse said. “Many women feel they don’t have a choice. Sometimes the pressure comes from a family member, but often it’s from the baby’s father, looking for an easy way out of responsibility.”
“The Sexual Revolution has made abortion the failsafe when contraception fails, as it so often does. Yet, aside from the obvious death of an innocent baby, abortion does further and lasting damage to the mother who grieves the loss of the child she never had.”
“I’m sorry for Spears’ experience. I’m also grateful that she’s showing post-abortion syndrome is real. The naysayers will claim she was depressed before the abortion, despite her saying, ‘I loved Justin so much. I always expected us to have a family together one day. This would just be much earlier than I’d anticipated.’”
“That doesn’t sound like a depressed woman, but even if she was, doctors shouldn’t be performing abortions on women with mental health issues,” Morse noted.
“The ‘Shout Your Abortion’ movement is obscene. If abortion is so great, why the massive ad campaign to try to convince people of that?”
“I thank Ms. Spears for her candor. Though I’m sorry for her experience, I hope that by such a public figure coming forward to express her deep, lasting sadness, others will feel more comfortable doing the same.”
To learn more about the studies regarding post-abortion distress, see this Dr. J Show interview of Fr. Paul Sullins.
Why the Annulment Explosion?
The latest Dr. J Show guest is John Clark, author of Betrayed Without a Kiss: Defending Marriage After Years of Failed Leadership in the Church, released October 31, 2023.
When a Catholic friend told Clark about his annulment process, many things didn’t sound right to John, which caused him to research the Church’s annulment history and process, leading to this new book.
When Henry VIII pushed for annulment, people died to protect marriage. That’s how important it is, Clark says.
In 1968, there were 338 annulments in America. In 1969, changes were made to the annulment process, making it much easier. In 1970, there were 5,403. By 1989, there were 72,000.
Every diocese requires a civil divorce prior to an annulment. In 70% of divorces, only one party wanted the marriage to end. Imagine if struggling couples sought help rather than divorce. And who is asking children how they feel about their parents splitting and calling their marriage invalid? What does that mean for the children?
“There is a denial of matrimony as a sacrament,” Clark says. “We need to fall in love with marriage.”
Ruth Institute Core Truth #3: The Marriage Crisis is Unfair to Children
When parents decide they don’t love each other, it is the children who suffer. The Ruth Institute has a dream that every child be born into a loving home with his or her own parents, married to each other. To be denied that is an injustice to children. Adults need to behave themselves in order to do right by their kids.
That and more, including the economic downsides to the marriage crisis, are explained in this video.
In case you missed them, see Core Truth 1: Children Need Their Parents and Core Truth 2: What Happens when Parents Are Missing from a Child’s Life.
The Ruth Institute is a global non-profit organization, leading an international interfaith coalition to defend the family and build a civilization of love. The Ruth Institute’s Founder and President, Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, is the author of The Sexual State: How Elite Ideologies Are Destroying Lives and Love and Economics: It Takes a Family to Raise a Village. Subscribe to our newsletter and YouTube channel to get all our latest news.