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Reviewed by Viga Boland for Readers' Favorite
With abortion once again a hot political/religious and social topic in the US since the reversal of the Roe-Wade ruling, it’s little wonder that writers are speaking out. Teresa Benitez, the author of the memoir Unburdening, is one of these. Her story graphically detailing three abortions she had between 2004 and 2022 is eye-opening, and will interest any woman contemplating an abortion, and not just for the recent decision to once again make getting an abortion so difficult.
You may well ask yourself why this intelligent woman who is today an engineer, doctor, and professor faced the difficult decision to abort not one pregnancy but three. The moving and sad story of her younger years as a child physically and mentally abused by her mother holds the key. But it wasn’t until Teresa, as an older adult and single mother of one, was finally able to afford truly healing therapy, including the use of EMDR, that she found the answers. Yet, how ironic that even then, she became pregnant for the fourth time and decided to abort.
The details of Teresa’s childhood and younger adult years are indeed interesting, but even more so, at least for me, are her descriptions of the first two abortions in the first decade of the 21st century. These were brutally painful! What she suffered physically is frightening, and a far cry from her more recent abortion. One cannot help but think of the many unfortunate women who have been forced to have back alley abortions, or, who today, thanks to the recent overturning of Roe vs Wade may do likewise. But Teresa Benitez also gives us an intimate look at the mental anguish she endured for years after that first abortion. This will leave women contemplating abortion with much to think about beyond their undeniable right to decide what is best for themselves and their bodies. Unburdening is an important book for many reasons. Benitez writes smoothly, sometimes almost poetically, but always honestly. Add this memoir to your must-read list today if abortion is currently on your mind for any reason.