Straight-A student feared parents’ reaction

One straight-A student, college bound young woman came from a family who strongly opposed pre-marital sex and abortion on religious grounds. She was so desperate not to disappoint her parents that she drove hundreds of miles from Minnesota, which has a parental involvement law, to an Illinois clinic so that she could have the abortion without letting her parents down.

Identified, Privacy Invaded by Anti-Abortion Group

Just days after a young woman appeared for a judicial bypass hearing, her parents received an anonymous letter from an anti-abortion group informing them of the date, time, and subject of the hearing. The members the anti-abortion group saw the young woman in the courthouse and identified her by searching for her face in high school yearbooks.

StopPNA parental notice of abortion act in Illinois harms young people

Recognized at the Courthouse

In examples from Minnesota and Massachusetts, one young woman was sitting in a court corridor when her sister’s civics class came through; another saw a neighbor in the courthouse; a third encountered her godmother, who was employed as a court officer; another had to hide in the bathroom to avoid being seen by a family member who worked in the courthouse; and a young woman ran into her father right outside of the courthouse.

PNA leads to Harm, Violence, and Death for Young People

A young woman picked a fight with her brother so he would punch her in the stomach, all in hope of triggering a miscarriage.

Another young woman threw herself down the stairs in hope of disrupting the pregnancy.

One young woman, who was a gymnast, devised a gymnastics practice regimen that she hoped would cause her to miscarry.

A young woman was so scared that her parents would find out about her unintended pregnancy, she tried to overdose on over-the-counter medication.

In a well publicized case from Indiana, a teen, desperate to end her pregnancy without her parents’ knowledge, had an illegal abortion and died from complications.

StopPNA parental notice of abortion act in Illinois harms young people

She had to call DCFS on her own family

The much older adult sister of a pregnant youth disclosed to a clinic that since learning of her sister’s pregnancy, her parents had engaged in a prolonged period of degrading her sister (by, for example, repeatedly calling her a whore and telling her that she was no good) and isolating her from all outside sources of support. As a result, the pregnant youth became so depressed the sister was seriously afraid that the pregnant youth would try to kill herself.

The older sister thought that the situation was so dire that, after talking to clinic staff, she called DCFS about her own family.

StopPNA parental notice of abortion act in Illinois harms young people