Anti-Abortion Woman Returns to Planned Parenthood After 5 Years, Has Unexpected Face-to-Face with Doctor
Five years after two different abortions, a Connecticut mother decided to go back to the Planned Parenthood where her babies’ lives ended: one by medication and one through surgery.
Erika Kapustinski has been on a journey of healing since 2018 when she attended a post-abortion program at her local faith-based pregnancy center. Her trip back to Planned Parenthood was the latest step of healing; She wanted her medical records so she could look at the ultrasound pictures that she was never allowed to see.
After she began looking through her medical records at home, however, she realized that the doctor she talked to while she was at the clinic was the woman who performed her surgical abortion in 2015.
The Western Journal first covered Kapustinski’s story of adoption, abortion, shame and healing in July 2019, a year after she attended the program at her local pregnancy center.
She began thinking about going back to Planned Parenthood after watching the movie “Unplanned,” which details Abby Johnson’s journey from clinic director for Planned Parenthood to pro-life activist.
Johnson’s story resonated with Kapustinski so much so that she found the pro-life activist’s Facebook page. One of the posts she saw, however, placed fear in her heart.
“After seeing the movie, I looked up Abby Johnson and I came across her facebook page and saw a post she did that if someone had an abortion within the last seven years, you could go to Planned Parenthood and ask for your medical records and they had to give them to you,” Kapustinski told The Western Journal. “I remember reading that and immediately had this fear in my heart and panic of how I could never go back there. The thought of ever stepping foot into Planned Parenthood again, terrified me. Crippled me.
“At the same time,” she continued, “I wanted so badly to have something to remember my two babies by and I knew that if I went back and obtained my medical records that it would mean that I would also have my ultrasound pictures, pictures I never was able to see.”
Even though she had already worked through so much shame, depression and anxiety from her abortions, going to Planned Parenthood was a step of her healing process she wasn’t ready to take.
She said it took 10 months of prayer and consideration before she felt like God had finally brought her to a place where she was strong enough to go back.
On Feb. 12, 2020, she took that next step toward healing and walked through the doors of the clinic.
“I had to sign some paperwork and it was hard, but walking out of that clinic with all of my information and the information and pictures of my two babies before they were aborted, was the most comforting experience,” she said.
“I had something of them. I had something to remember them by. I could hold onto these photos close to my heart until I see them one day in Heaven.”
She told The Western Journal she immediately went to her car and prayed for strength to open the envelope as tears rolled down her face.
“These ultrasound pictures were and are a reminder of something awful that I had done in a very awful season of my life,” she added, “but they are also a reminder of God’s grace and goodness in my life and the redemption and restoration He has given to me.”
After looking through her medical records more thoroughly, Kapustinski realized she had inadvertently come upon another facet of her abortion story she wasn’t prepared for: she had come face-to-face with the doctor who performed her surgical abortion.
She said had she known, she believes she would have shared her story with the doctor — how traumatic the experience was for her.
“I would not say anything out of anger,” she clarified, “but come from a place of love and tell her that I will be praying for her and that I wish she would take time to reconsider what she does and all the people; both babies and women, and men, that she is affecting.”
Even though going back to the clinic was an emotional journey for her, Kapustinski said she’s proud of herself for facing her fear and shame head-on.
“When I was able to confront that fear, with God, and go back, that was healing for me,” she told The Western Journal. “It was another layer healed and I was so thankful that God healed within me another part of my abortion stories.”
She shared her story on social media and her blog in hopes of not only exposing abortion for what it truly is, but also to encourage women who have had abortions that there can be healing afterward.
Since sharing her experience of going back to Planned Parenthood, she said she has received “hundreds of messages,” some encouraging and others hateful.
“In sharing my story, I had so many women who have had abortions reach out to me and share their deep pain, a secret they’ve been holding onto for a long time (some for decades!), and what caused them to have an abortion,” she said.
“I also have received hate messages, and to be honest, I knew that it would come with me sharing my story,” she continued. “That doesn’t surprise me and it doesn’t affect me and certainly won’t keep me from continuing to share my story because I know who I am in God, what He says of me, what He has done for me and all I do when I see those hateful messages is pray for the people who wrote those.”
What surprised her, however, was that many of the hateful messages came from people who were pro-life.
Kapustinski, who is a mother to five earthly children, isn’t praising abortion by sharing her story. Instead, she is extending grace and healing to women who have had abortions, grace and healing she has experienced herself.
“We don’t know everyone’s story as to how they ended up in the place of having an abortion, but when that woman comes to a place of needing healing, needing to work through her emotions as a result of the abortion, and wants to seek forgiveness and walk in freedom, we have to love her! We must love her,” she said, adding that God pours out grace and love upon sinners and that Christians should do the same.
“That is what the pro-life movement should stand for and be about — to be Jesus to these hurting women who have had abortions and help them, not hurt them.”
Despite the hateful messages, Kapustinski is continuing to share the story of her healing process through social media and her blog. She is also working on a book as well as a post-abortion ministry for women.
“I want to see the abortion rates dropped, more babies saved and more women healed,” she concluded. “If I can use my story to do even just some of that, I am happy.
“It is my honor and my joy to share a once painful time in my life, to bring truth and encourage others who read it.”
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