We express a warm welcome to those men who have been involved in any way with abortion. We hope the information in this section will help you to begin to make sense of your experience and assist you in your journey to healing.
The Retreats are for any woman or man suffering after abortion. Here’s feedback from a woman retreat participant revealing the special blessing that men bring to the retreat:
"I used to consider post abortion healing only a woman's issue. As you know, men grieve too.... but I never knew that. I can't tell you how much the presence of men on the Rachel's Vineyard Retreats has helped me to heal. Abortion divides us. It divides mother from child and severs the love in many relationships. Through journeying with men in Rachel's Vineyard, I finally realized that I can forgive the many men in my past who had let me down. I have been able to accomplish this because of the strength and courage I have witnessed in men who come and share what they went through. I never realized that men suffer deep grief from this. I think we need each other to fully reconcile what this pain has done in our lives and to our relationships. The men who attended my retreat helped to restore my faith in men.... And that is a miracle!
Perhaps your girlfriend or wife had an abortion against your will. You may have been powerless to stop her decision and protect your child. Fathers do not have any rights when their partner is making a decision to abort. Rachel's Vineyard will help you to grieve your loss and deal with the powerful feelings of anger and depression you are struggling with. You will need the help of others to heal of this loss. Please go to our Weekend Retreat locations for confidential email and phone contacts. You can also go to our Men's
Email Buddies section. Here you will find the bios of men ready to reach out with support. Contact them with any questions and to share about your loss.
Yes! Couples who attend a retreat with their spouse report an increase in communication, intimacy, and trust in their relationship-areas negatively impacted by abortion. We understand that each couple is different, there are situations where attending as a couple is not possible or desirable, and sometimes each person can be at different stages of their healing journey. However don’t be afraid to ask your spouse to accompany you on the retreat, especially if you are both parents of the aborted child. Even if your spouse was not involved in the abortion(s), there is still a great benefit to attending the retreat together.
If you love a woman who experienced abortion before you met her, you might find your current relationship with her is being impacted by some of her symptoms. These can include fear of pregnancy and parenting, trouble with intimacy, inability to enjoy sex, rejection of the love you try to give her because she does not feel worthy of your tenderness and affection. We invite you to explore offering the retreat to your wife as a gift and assure her that you would like to accompany her as she goes to deal with this painful event in her history.
"I never knew my wife had suffered so much pain over an abortion she had before I met her. It was a real eye opener to attend the Rachel's Vineyard Retreat with her and offer my support in an area of her life where there was so much secret grief. Our marriage has truly been blessed. We are closer now than we have ever been and I had the privilege of being able to spiritually adopt her child during the Memorial Service."
Stuck in a Cycle of Repeating Self Destructive Behaviors?
Theresa Burke is the author of Forbidden Grief, and developed the Rachel's Vineyard Retreat Process. This section from Forbidden Grief on "Traumatic Re-enactment" may shed some light on some of the ways we can act out on our unresolved abortion pain, or to help us understand a loved one who is suffering from abortion trauma.