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Post Abortion: The Emotional Side Effects


Abortion has different effects on each woman. The experiences vary from person to person, while some experience sense of relief, while some pain of loss, and the emotions differ. Studies show that, after an abortion, the emotional and psychological side effects are more than the physical side effects. The emotional side effects range from mild regret to the complex case of depression and suicidal ideas. Hence, abortion is not just terminating a child and moving on in life, it is much more. 

A woman undergoes a lot of changes physically and mentally, post-abortion. It is important to talk about the feelings, with a healthcare specialist, who can answer the questions and understand the patient. This article explains the various emotional changes and side effects that one might go through after an abortion. 

The potential psychological and emotional side effects after an abortion

A woman's belief is very crucial in handling the post-abortion emotional side effects. One who doesn't think of the fetus as a baby until it is born, who doesn't have much attachment with the pregnancy has almost zero negative impact. However, one who believes in abortion as the killing of a child, or whose family values don't approve of abortion, or abortion has been decided under pressure will have greater negative side effects. The intensity and duration of the side effects vary from woman to woman. Here are some of the negative emotional side effects:

  • Regret - Regretting on pregnancy termination decision. 
  • Anger - Anger over family, on self for not able to protect the child, for deciding to abort the unborn. 
  • Guilt - Guilt of doing injustice to the unborn. 
  • Shame
  • Isolation and loneliness 
  • Not able to sleep, getting nightmares, and suffering from Insomnia.
  • Losing self-confidence.
  • Relationship issues - Blaming partner and family over the abortion decision. 
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Depression
  • Eating disorder

Who is prone to have emotional side effects after an abortion?

Religious beliefs, family values, relationship problems, the upbringing of the woman, and social pressure, all of these make it hard for the woman. With time, the emotions should gradually decrease and subside. However, if it doesn't happen in a month, and the woman is gradually sinking into depression, then one must take professional help.

Symptoms of undergoing emotional side effects post-abortion

Many women undergo mental trauma alone, without discussing or talking about it. The feeling of guilt, anger, and shame, makes it hard for the woman to open up and express her sorrow. Some of the signs that a woman is undergoing negative emotional side effects are:

  • Feeling low or sad. 
  • Lack of interest in previously enjoyed activities.
  • Less talking, and lost in thoughts. Not paying attention to talks. 
  • Showing irritation, anger, and crying over discussions. 
  • Sleeping too much, or staying awake at night.
  • Loss of interest in sex.


Abortion involves hormonal changes in the body. The hormonal imbalance causes mixed emotions like anger, crying, sadness, and much more. Within a few weeks, the patient should be fine; however, if the woman starts feeling guilt, blames herself, and shows signs of depression, the patient must be shown to a good psychologist.