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A Connecticut woman is sharing her emotional story of adoption, abortion, shame and healing in hopes of calling out abortion for what it truly is and sharing that there can be hope after it.
In 2015, Erika Kapustinski was a mother of four children and was eight weeks pregnant when she walked into a Planned Parenthood and walked out with a pill that would end her unborn baby’s life.
“It was a season of pain, brokenness, depression, fear, anger, and where I allowed the enemy to creep into my life and my heart in ways that entangled me and twisted everything I thought to have known,” she wrote on her blog four years later.
“I would often tell myself that I did not actually end the life of my baby because I only swallowed this pill that some nurse gave me at Planned Parenthood. I kept telling myself that I somehow, did the right thing.”
But the grief, shame and depression only got worse, and six months later, she found out she was pregnant again. This time, however, she was 14 weeks along.
Still wrapped in the pain, brokenness and depression she faced before her first abortion, she decided to get a second abortion — a surgical one.
“After I left the recovery room later that day, I drove home and wept,” she recalled. “I never wanted to have the abortion, but I allowed the voices around me and the enemy to consume my thought process and I went ahead with it anyways.”
Kapustinski spent the next few years trying to cover her deep trauma with “stuff” and it only felt like putting a band-aid on a hemorrhaging wound; nothing was fixing the core problem, even after she gave birth to her fifth child in 2017.
It wasn’t until she attended a post-abortion course, which sought to bring healing to women who have had abortions, that she allowed herself to feel the emotion surrounding her abortions and was able to reflect on her own childhood adoption story. In doing so, she began to feel free.
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Post-Abortive Moms feel abortion in a deeper way. This is because we already know what it's like to carry a child, we already know what the unborn baby looks like at each week of the pregnancy and we know the joy that comes when the baby is born. The pain of having an abortion when you are already a Mother is deep and why denial and grief seem to be more overwhelming for a woman who is already a Mother yet chooses abortion. It causes a shift in the mother/child relationship and can damage that bond due to the shame that follows an abortion. Mothers who have had an abortion often feel they are not good enough to be moms to their children on earth and they feel undeserving to even be called a Mom anymore. I say all of that because those feelings are real and hard and take time to heal from. But what God wants you to know is that there is hope for you as a Post-Abortive Mom. God has so much love for you. I felt all of this in such deep ways after my two abortions after already having 4 children and I also felt it once my 5th was born after the abortions. I didnt feel called anymore. I didn't feel good enough. But God saw me as chosen, called, loved, enough, forgiven and he brought healing to every broken piece of my heart in ways that transformed my mothering to my 5 earthly children. God sees you this way too my friend. Post-Abortive Moms, read every word of this statement; YOU WERE CHOSEN BY GOD TO BE THE MOM TO YOUR CHILDREN. That was no accident. You are enough for your children because of God and his grace. You are forgiven. You are covered with grace. You don't need to walk with your head down wondering if you're good enough for your kids. You can walk in freedom and with the hope God has given you. You are loved and you are a Mother not just to your children on earth but also to your child/children in heaven. ❤ #postabortive #postabortivemothers #healingafterabortion #hopeafterabortion #freedomfromabortion #setfree
Conceived in Rape, Adopted and Loved
Kapustinski was adopted when she was only 4 months old. Even though her adoptive parents were open and honest about her adoption, she wasn’t curious about her birth parents until she was in high school.
While on a youth retreat with her church, the longing to know more about her birth parents grew deep. When she returned home, Kapustinski decided to sit her adoptive parents down and ask for any information they had.
Her adoptive mom stood up, walked into another room and returned with a handful of letters that her birth mother had sent each year around her birthday. Her parents had been waiting for the right moment to share them.
Just a few months later, Kapustinski met her birth mother for the first time. “It was full of emotions with everything and nothing that I expected all at the same time,” she wrote to Love What Matters. “I was grateful I had met her and could be in some kind of contact going forth.”
Their correspondence continued over the next few years, but soon, the two lost contact for four years.
At the end of that period, when Kapustinski was a 21-year-old mother-of-two, the same deep longing that had manifested at youth camp five years earlier began to grow; she wanted to know more about her birth father, too.
She knew that her mother was only 14 years old when she gave birth, but her birth mom had never mentioned anything about Kapustinski’s birth father. So she called her birth mom and directly asked.
“You were conceived in rape,” her birth mom said, beginning to weep. “I don’t know who he is. I can only tell you what I remember of how he looked at that time. I remember hearing someone else call his name, I think, a friend of his maybe, but I barely remember that.”
Shocked at first, Kapustinski was unsure what to say. Sensing the sadness and apologetic tone in her mother’s voice, she eventually said, “Thank you for loving me enough to choose adoption for me. I love you.”
Finding Hope and Freedom After Abortion
As Kapustinski sat in grief and shame over her abortions, she realized just how much strength her birth mother displayed by choosing adoption over abortion, considering both her age and the circumstances surrounding the conception.
“(My abortions) caused such a deep depression in my life and shame took root in so many different forms in my life the months and years following and I never, ever really felt good enough; to myself, to others, to my kids, and especially to God,” she wrote on her blog.
“I walked through both of those abortions by myself and the trauma that I faced during those and following was too much to bear.”
But the 8-week “Forgiven and Set Free” class through her local faith-based pregnancy center, ABC Women’s Center, would provide her the opportunity to actually address the root of her shame and ask God to heal her from it.
ABC Women’s Center provides pregnancy tests, ultrasounds, parenting support, options counseling and post-abortion support. Their “Forgiven and Set Free” class is based on a 12-week bible study written by Linda Cochrane that the center has condensed into an 8-week course.
“We have seen women heal from their abortion wounds and mature in faith,” Mickeve Regis, the Client Service Manager at the ABC Women’s Center, told The Western Journal. “The Bible study covers the stages of grief, forgiveness and acceptance.”
Through the scripture-based course, the lies Kapustinski believed about herself were dispelled and replaced with the truths of God sees her.
“God saw me as chosen, called, loved, enough, forgiven and he brought healing to every broken piece of my heart in ways that transformed my mothering to my 5 earthly children,” she wrote.
Sharing Her Story To Bring Hope to Others
One year after discovering freedom and hope after her own abortions, Kapustinski felt God call her to share her story more publicly, not only to speak against the lie that abortions are good, but also to show women who have already had abortions that healing is possible.
Through her blog and future speaking engagements, Kapustinski’s biggest prayer is that God will use her words to speak into the lives of women who have been caught in between a political debate.
“Abortion is not talked about enough, not in the way it should be,” she told The Western Journal. “And when it is talked about, it seems that it is always attacks from pro-life and pro-choice instead of it coming from a place of pro-love.”
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Not a new picture but my heart is heavy. It is a day of being on my knees, face to the floor, praying and interceding on my kids behalf. I don't know why Jesus chose me to walk through this. I look around me with so many unknowns and all I can do is cling to Jesus and HIS truths, HIS promises. Something is coming, breakthrough is coming, I can feel it. I don't know when Jesus will do this and I don't know how. We need a house big enough for all of us, and basically, a miracle. But you know what? I BELIEVE he will provide! He will. Because Jesus is faithful and good. If you're the praying kind, please pray for my kids. Would you pray along with me on their behalf? Would you pray for me and the spiritual warfare I've been facing? I put aside how I feel and look up to Jesus for his peace and joy. ❤ One day ill look back and see in even greater ways his faithfulness.
She also hopes that through her blog other women can see that they don’t have to wallow in the shame that follows abortion.
“I don’t share my story to boast anything of my own, I share my story as a way to bring hope to hopeless, to bring restoration to the broken women who walk in shame, to show who God is and how extravagant his love is for us and how he desires freedom and healing for post-abortive women,” she wrote on Facebook after her Love What Matters story was published.
“We have to humble and position ourselves in a way that is all God, and nothing of ourselves. I step back, allowing God to go before me and trust that He will give me his voice, his power, his love, so that people may read about my story and see more of Him,” she continued.
“There is hope after abortion. There is healing.”
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