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In a 2012 interview (which referred to her new biography), Charlotte Dawson was quoted as follows:

Charlotte says she was thrilled when she realised she was pregnant, but her husband Scott was not so happy.

“I could sense some hesitation in Scott,” she says. “My due date would clash with the 2000 Olympic Games and this was very concerning.

“Everything Scott had done was leading up to this moment and nothing could stand in his way, so it was decided that we would terminate the child and try again later. Who needed a developing foetus when a gold medal was on offer, eh?”

On the day of the termination, Charlotte says she was in “total turmoil”. Her husband accompanied her to the clinic, but “couldn’t cope with the atmosphere” so left her alone.

After the procedure, Charlotte went home and tried to behave as though nothing had happened, but says something had changed forever.

“I felt a shift,” she says. “Maybe it was hormonal, but I felt the early tinges of what I can now identify as my first experience with depression.”

In the days since Charlotte Dawson’s tragic passing, many people have re-posted links to this article on social media, and various journalists around the world have included this information in their news coverage of her life and death.

Yet for some reason, some people have reacted very harshly to anyone who draws attention to this rather important aspect of the story of Charlotte Dawson.

I would humbly suggest that such reactions are completely unwarranted, and in fact terribly dangerous.

Those engaging in these attempts to silence the full facts surrounding Charlotte Dawson’s battle with depression may believe that they are performing some act of kindness, but in reality they are simply doing a lot of Kiwi women a great disservice.

The sad fact is that there are many New Zealand women who are currently dealing with the emotional hurt that abortion has caused in their lives.

These women do not need to be silenced, or to have their traumatic abortion experiences marginalized, they need to be heard.

Trying to shame people into silence for highlighting the damage that abortion caused in the life of Charlotte Dawson is ridiculously shortsighted, and it simply perpetuates the myth that abortion doesn’t cause harm to women, and that anyone who experiences emotional trauma from an abortion is either deluded or lying if they claim that abortion has hurt them.

The other vitally important aspect of Charlotte Dawson’s abortion story, as related by her in her 2012 biography, is the issue of coercion.

Charlotte clearly indicates that she wanted to have her child, yet her husband did not, and that it was his interests that led to her being required to terminate the life of their unborn child.

She was in “turmoil” (her words, not mine) on the day of her abortion, and then her husband abandoned her into the hands of an abortionist who carried out the vile act of robbing her of one of her children because a child didn’t suit the plans her husband had for his life.

There really wasn’t much in the way of choice for Charlotte in all of this, yet many so-called ‘pro-choice’ people are now attacking anyone for daring to point this out.

Surely if you are truly pro-choice, you should be at the front of the line decrying the way this abortion unfolded in the life of Charlotte Dawson.

Her abortion experience is absolutely tragic, and it raises many serious questions about informed consent, coercion and abortion laws which don’t actually protect women in these situations.

Silencing people who point out the fact that Charlotte Dawson publicly stated that her abortion was the beginning of her long running battle with depression, a depression which appears to have subsequently resulted in her death, is dangerously dishonest.

There are many Kiwi women facing similar post-abortion issues to those faced by Charlotte Dawson.

There are also many Kiwi women experiencing the same coercive factors, and the same lack of sound legal protections to mitigate them, as Charlotte Dawson experienced in the lead up to her abortion.

These women deserve better than our silence, and this means refusing to give in to the censorship which doesn’t want us to challenge a status quo which sees many women pressured into abortions they really don’t want, or left to deal with the aftermath of abortion in a culture that seemingly doesn’t want to acknowledge that abortion hurts women.

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