Being pro-life in today’s society is difficult; every pro-life advocate faces discouragement from time to time. However, whenever difficulty is expressed, it can always be followed with a “but” statement. These “but” statements are generally something along the lines of: “but anything that is worthwhile is difficult,” “but to me, it is the only option,” or “but it is the most noble cause I could fight for”. Encouraging statements!
Discouragement Is Worse Than Difficulty
These encouraging statements keep so many of us going, but what pro-lifers will often not tell you is just HOW discouraging it can be to do pro-life work. It is hard to admit sometimes, but it is the truth. Discouragement can be worse than difficulty. Difficulty usually refers to a literal struggle that can be overcome in a variety of ways, where as discouragement is an emotional or mental struggle. When it gets discouraging, there are two paths you can take: you can give up or you keep going.
I am going to assume you do not want to give up, so here is some advice on how to keep going!
Discouragement, Be Gone!
When you hit an emotional or mental roadblock, sometimes the most difficult part on getting back on track is figuring out what to do first. Here are some pointers on what to think about.
Identify the Issue
Figuring out the issues that are making you uncomfortable is the first step. This could be a question someone asked you that you don’t know how to answer, an issue that you still don’t fully understand yourself, or even personal doubts. Identifying the problem is the first solution!
- Remember why you are pro-life.
- Everyone has a story. It might have to do with how a family member was effected, a personal experience you had, or your own learning through research or an inspirational person.
- Remember those who are affected by abortion and rekindle your desire to help them.
- Almost 1/3 of all women in the United States get an abortion.
- Since being legalized, there have been over 53 million total abortions performed.
- Abortion increases chances for depression, cancer, and anxiety for the woman. Women contemplating abortion sincerely need our help.
- Remember that you are not the only one who is pro-life; there are millions who feel the same.
- Sometimes it feels as if you are the only pro-life person left on this planet. It is a scary feeling of being alone! Rekindle relationships with others who are also pro-life. Sometimes all it takes is to hear someone else speak passionately in order to feel encouraged again. Communicating to pro-life friends or coworkers that you are feeling discouraged will help them to help you.
Indulge in Books, Articles, and Movies
- “Pro-Life Answers to Pro-Choice Arguments” by Randy Alcorn
- You could honestly flip open to any random page to overcome discouragement. This is also a great book when you need to know how to answer a difficult pro-choice question. He covers everything!
- GenLife or other Catholic pro-life blogs
- You’ve come to the right place. GenLife has so many good articles to read about pro-life topics ranging from abortion to euthanasia to living a pro-life lifestyle.
- October Baby – In this movie, a college freshman embarks on an adventure with a group of misfit friends to find her place, as she has recently been told that she was the survivor of a failed abortion.
- Bella – The lives of a man and a woman intertwine one day as she finds herself pregnant and alone and he feels he needs to redeem himself for past mistakes. The two grow together through their difficulties.
The most important thing to remember when you face discouragement is that it is just that: discouragement. Everyone goes through difficulties at some point; you are not alone. Difficulties and discouragement lead to growth. Kelly Clarkson was not kidding: what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.
For a little more inspiration, read and perhaps consider memorizing Philippians 4:13: “I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” You can do this! Keep going. Find your “but” statement!