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Illinois Federation

For Right to Life

Daily News

Friday, November 07, 2008

Counselor Uses Fiction to Bring Alive the True Pain Many Women Experience After an Abortion


The issue of post-abortion syndrome is a real one. A study conducted in California concluded the following: "A review of the medical records of 56,741 California Medicaid patients revealed that women who aborted were 160 percent more likely than delivering women to be hospitalized for psychiatric treatment in the first 90 days following abortion or delivery. Rates of psychiatric treatment remained significantly higher for at least four years." (Canadian Medical Association Journal, 2003). The Medical Science Monitor (2003)* also reports that, "Women have a 65% higher risk of clinical depression after abortion compared to women who give birth." While many try to avoid the issue, women are suffering an undeniable agony that longs for healing.


In Julie Surface Johnson's new book "Over Coffee (We Shared Our Secrets)" six women of various ages and backgrounds meet with one thing in common--a need to heal from the pain of past choices. In her many years of involvement with pregnancy care centers Julie personally counseled hundreds of hurting women with unplanned pregnancies, some of whom chose life and others, abortion. Many who chose abortion later returned, broken-hearted, to the pregnancy center where they found help and healing in post-abortion recovery support groups. "It's impossible to experience freedom and healing without working through the guilt that haunts so many postabortive women," Johnson says. "Over Coffee (We Shared Our Secrets)" is a story of women who are attempting to do just that. Johnson hopes the book will encourage women who still struggle with past abortion choices to seek the healing that they so desperately need.


Julie Surface Johnson has been an active worker in the pregnancy care center movement, throwing her energies behind their compassionate care for women who face abortion decisions. In Portland, Julie oversaw support groups and witnessed their effectiveness firsthand. In 2006, Julie left direct involvement with pregnancy centers in order to write about them. "Over Coffee (We Shared Our Secrets)" is the first of a series of books that incorporate some of her findings while working among women in the centers. She is currently beginning work on the fourth novel in the "Sisters at Heart series."


Contact: Abigail Davidson

Source: WinePress Publishing Group

Source URL:

Publish Date: November 7, 2008

Click here to link to this article.



The IFRL is the largest grassroots pro-life organization in Illinois. A non-profit organization, that serves as the state coordinating body for local pro-life chapters representing thousands of Illinois citizens working to restore respect for all human life in our society. The IFRL is composed of people of different political persuasions, various faiths and diverse economic, social and ethnic backgrounds. Since 1973 the Illinois Federation for Right to Life has been working to end abortion and restore legal protection to those members of the human family who are threatened by abortion, infanticide and euthanasia. Diverse though we are, we hold one common belief - that every human being has an inalienable right to life that is precious and must be protected. IFRL is dedicated to restoring the right to life to the unborn, and protection for the disabled and the elderly.   Click here to learn more about the IFRL.