Friday, January 06, 2006


a recent NZ study that concluded that abortion raises the risk of depression .

Now I accelt that some of this effect will be the result of moe depresed peopel wanting abortions (not surprisingly). But to some extent surely it isalmot beyond dispute that abortion causes depression (I think it obviously would in at least some cases). BUT if we are going to use this as an argument in the abortion debate the question is how does this compare to giving a baby to a woman who doesnt particularly want it (maybe some post natal depresion will result from that).


By the age of 25, the study found, 42 per cent of those who had had an abortion had also experienced major depression during the previous four years.

This was nearly double the rate of those who had never been pregnant and 35 per cent higher than those who had chosen to continue a pregnancy.

of course the above debate is particularly relevant in the context of the legal technicalities because

Under the 1977 Contraception, Sterilisation and Abortion Act, abortion is an offence under the Crimes Act unless two "certifying consultants" approve it on certain grounds, usually that a woman's mental health would be endangered by continuing the pregnancy.

so two scenarios - lets say the above criteria was a 43% risk of mental health problems - in that case meantal health is being improved by the policy. Lets say it is 35% - then the result is unclear - lets say it is 10% (although this seems pretty unlikely!) in that case it is probably acting contrary to it's stated purpose


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