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NRL News
Page 24
June 2010
Volume 37
Issue 6

No Matter How Many Times You Hear the Story of
Abortion Grief the Pain Is Just as Raw

By Dave Andrusko

If you are a middle-aged guy like me, you probably have never heard of Rozanda “Chilli” Thomas, a member of the very successful 1990s hip-hop trio TLC, who now has her own VH1 reality television show called, What Chilli Wants. I know nothing about the show, other than that on the May 9 episode Rozanda opened up about her 1991 abortion.

She is interviewed by a female therapist who says let’s talk about “relationships. Tell me about a boyfriend. Who stands out in your mind?” Within a matter of seconds, Rozanda is talking about a “relationship.”

Although I will quote liberally, without hearing the pauses, and watching the excruciatingly painful expressions and the tears, you miss how absolutely gripping Rozanda’s story actually is.

She is brutally honest (with us and herself), and candid, and clearly still feels a searing pain. She tells us that she was in this relationship and became pregnant at age 20. She talks about not having the support—“I was so scared”—and “I didn’t know what to do” and “chose to not have it (the baby)—one of the biggest mistakes.”

The interviewer immediately follows up by asking her why it was “the biggest mistake?” “Because I didn’t want to do that.”

Did she feel “forced”? Rozanda responds by talking about the many cross-currents of pressures—of being just 20 and her career hadn’t even really started. “So how could I do all that,” she asks. “How could I be a mommy? ... It messed me up ... I don’t know. It broke my spirit, that’s what it did.”

The interviewer shrewdly asks, “So it changed you from what to what?” Searching for the right words to convey how she felt—but not reveal too much?—Rozanda says haltingly that she felt “not my strong self anymore. I felt like I gave in and I broke to what someone else wanted.”

Rozanda goes on, “And I would break down and I would just cry [she starts to cry] ... because [her voice cracks] because I wasn’t a mommy. I cried almost every day for almost nine years.”

And she immediately says, “And then I was caught up—I had to have a baby. I had to fix it and the only way I could fix it was with that person. I could only have this baby with him, because the baby that I didn’t have was with him.” In that tangle of emotions and needs and regrets, Rozanda is longing for a replacement baby, very common among women who did not want the abortion in the first place.

There is much more to her story, which is only a few minutes long but incredibly powerful. Suffice it to say that Rozanda says she broke away from that relationship because “I was compromising who I was as a person to please this person.”

Your heart breaks as you hear what you know is only the tip of an iceberg of emotional hurt, pain, and regret. For the 17 thousandth time, abortion kills babies and emotionally mauls their mothers.