Melissa Ohden is fourteen when she learns she is the survivor of a botched abortion. In this intimate memoir she details for the first time her search for her biological parents, and her own journey from anger and shame to faith and empowerment. Read more...
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Melissa Ohden is fourteen when she learns she is the survivor of a botched abortion. In this intimate memoir she details for the first time her search for her biological parents, and her own journey from anger and shame to faith and empowerment.
After a decade-long search Melissa finally locates her birth father and writes to extend forgiveness, only to learn that he has died without answering her burning questions. Melissa becomes a mother herself in the very hospital where she was aborted. This experience transforms her attitude toward women who have had abortions, as does the miscarriage of her only son and the birth of a second daughter with complex health issues. But could anything prepare her for the day she finally meets her birth mother and hears her side of their story?
This intensely personal story of love and redemption illumines the powerful bond between mother and child that can overcome all odds.
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2017-02-06
- Reviewer: Staff
Ohdens straightforward and courageous memoir revolves around her efforts to find her birth parents and understand her identity after discovering at age 14 that she survived a late-term abortion. She was raised in a loving, religious, and economically pinched family in rural and small-town Iowa, and her faith and love of family inform her reactions to her situation and journey. She explores her political activism, which grew organically but was helped along by the negative reaction she received in college and beyond to her story and her pro-life feminism. Occasionally she jumps to conclusions that seem to validate her political beliefs, and at times she takes an extreme position, but her writing generally offers a stridency formed from deep conviction. Readers of all stripes will feel compassion for the circumstances of her birth, her embarrassment and shame, and her self-harming behaviors. Her biological parents tragic narrative and her own miscarriage are among the books most poignant moments; others who have miscarried will recognize her reactions. Equally touching are the relationships she forges with the biological relatives who werent involved in her birth mothers decision to attempt to end her pregnancy. Ohdens beautifully open book is unlikely to change minds on either side of the abortion debate, but it does personalize that debate in a unique way. (Jan.)