Life After Abortion: An Actress’ Journey From Pain and Despair to Faith and Freedom

Jessica Chow is an up-and-coming actress who made appearances on popular TV shows such as Colony, Jane the Virgin and Bad Teacher. You may have also seen her in national commercials with AT&T, Samsung, Wal-Mart, Skechers and Best Buy.

Actress Jessica Chow at various premieres

Her journey as an actress, however, pales in comparison to her quest to find peace after having two abortions and overcoming the feelings of shame, despair and loneliness that stalked her for years afterward.

For Ms. Chow, if she had not found faith and a strong community of support that showed her love and forgiveness, she would have never discovered the healing and redemption that led to her helping other women struggling to cope with life after abortion. I was able to interview Ms. Chow to share her journey.

The Beginning: The Surprise of Pregnancy and Making a Decision on Abortion

Her story begins like many others. She was a young college graduate from a prestigious university who was preoccupied with her burgeoning career and many social interactions. She had a lot of friends, was dating a nice guy and living in the heart of Beverly Hills.

One day, everything changed. She started feeling different; her body felt off. At first, she thought she was coming down with something, but this “illness” didn’t feel like anything she’d ever felt before. After a few days had passed, though, she almost subconsciously knew that this wasn’t a cold but something more. Was she pregnant? Before she even took the test, she already seemed to know.

When her pregnancy test came out positive, she was flooded with emotions. She immediately felt guilt, shame and fear, and her mind raced about who was to blame for this surprise pregnancy and how she could “cover things up.”

She felt completely alone as she tried figuring out what to do. She was scared and confused, and she didn’t know where to turn. She thought about how she had her whole life ahead of her, and a pregnancy was the last thing she expected to deal with. In a world that encourages self-preservation, especially at a young age, she focused on what was “best” for her future.

With that mindset, she started considering an abortion. She thought that if she got rid of “it,” things would go back to how they were. “No harm. Problem solved. Right?”

Still in a quandary about her situation, she reached out to a close friend who only affirmed this way of thinking. The advice was calculated, almost like a business decision. “You have your career and your entire future to think about. It’s a no-brainer, you have to have an abortion,” her friend urged.

So, at the young age of 22, Ms. Chow decided to have an abortion.

Coping With the Emotional Impact of Abortion

She was not, however, prepared for the emotional impact that she faced afterward. She felt isolated.  Who could she talk to about her situation, who could she ask for guidance? Having an abortion is a taboo, no one shares openly about it for fear of judgment and reprisal.

Jessica described her feelings after the procedure:

“I woke up expecting to be relieved, but, instead, I felt as if the joy was sucked out of my heart. I just knew that something was wrong, and I did something awful. I felt a kind of deep bondage and a darkness sweep over me.”

She expected freedom after the abortion, but instead, she felt deep roots of shame begin to plant within her heart. She tried convincing herself that her pregnancy and abortion were just speedbumps that needed to be put out of her mind in order to continue moving forward. She tried justifying her decision with thoughts like:

“I made my choice so there’s no turning back. A lot of other girls do what I did so that makes it normal. I was only 5 weeks along, so I didn’t do anything wrong since it technically wasn’t a baby yet. It’s not a big deal.”

But these thoughts were only temporary and faded quickly. No matter how hard she tried, she continued to feel pain from her emotional torment. She could not help but think about how she “went into the clinic with a life and left without one.”

Ms. Chow explained:

“Moving on does not always equate to moving forward. Without true healing and complete forgiveness of yourself, the hurt of a deep wound is only suppressed. If it is not released, then it begins festering and seeping out of you through anger, malice and irritability.”

Ms. Chow indeed had lingering feelings of regret, remorse and resentment that were covered up as she lacked the guidance to cope in a healthy manner. She tried to bury and suppress these feelings of shame to no avail. So she tried distracting herself from these dark emotions by filling her empty time with work, traveling, partying and toxic relationships. She began isolating herself with this “dark secret,” and eventually her pain manifested into self-destructive behavior that led her into the world of raving and drugs.

The Turning Point: From Despair to Finding Community and Faith

She had made friends with people that pushed her further into emotional distress by encouraging this destructive lifestyle. Many of these people had deep emotional problems of their own, but they bonded by numbing their pain together through parties, drugs and alcohol. It seemed like a truly loving community, but it was a cheap imitation that only lasted until the night ended or the high wore off.

Unfortunately, this lifestyle is also prone to create more problems, which happened when Ms. Chow found out that she was pregnant again and decided the only way out was another abortion. She was now at a breaking point. Nothing she tried to relieve her overwhelming emotional pain worked. With her attempts at numbing the pain only driving her to a darker place, she had almost lost all hope.

Finding a Positive Community of People

Then her brother introduced her to Reality L.A., where she met a strong, patient and uplifting community of people who were very different from what she knew. She felt an overwhelming sense of warmth, acceptance and love whenever she was with them.

However, she was hesitant to believe that the love of this community was authentic because her past experiences created a deep distrust of the people around her. “People’s true intentions always seemed to have ulterior motives,” she recalled.

Over time, she slowly began to embrace this group and their approach to life. She felt comfortable with these people as they accepted each other, flaws and all, and didn’t pass judgment. They actually took the time to listen and support each other rather than trying to “fix” one another. The relationships that she developed were more about giving to each other than taking.

It was enlightening and a breath of fresh air. She began to realize that she didn’t have to walk life alone. There are people who really cared about her as a person—regardless of her past—and delighted in helping each other lead a fulfilling and satisfying life.

Finding Faith

As she began spending more time with this group that went to church and had faith in God, she was curious who this “God” was. She noticed that when they prayed, it sounded like they knew him intimately and personally. She said:

“They sounded like they were talking to someone – a close friend. So one day I decided to go to a church service at @realityLA to see what this God was all about. I don’t remember the sermon but I do remember the worship. Reality L.A. turns down the lights so everyone can have their time of worship without fear of anyone watching. It provides a safe space of privacy but also intimacy with the Lord.”

She recalled that:

 “The very first note that the woman sang dropped me to my knees and I began sobbing. It was the most beautiful voice I’d ever heard as she sang lyrics like, ‘Spirit lead me where trust is without borders. Let me walk upon the waters wherever you would call me. Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander and my faith would be made stronger’ and ‘God, consume me from the inside out’ and ‘there is power in the name of Jesus to break every chain’.”

She explained her moment of enlightenment:

“This was when I met the Holy Spirit. I didn’t hear words or a voice, but I felt entirely at peace as He communicated to me that He is here. He is with me and always had been. I have never been alone because He knows me. He knows that I am sad, angry and in pain, and He wants me to trust Him so that He can free me from all my pain. He understands and is compassionate, and it was the gentlest embrace I’d ever felt.”

From that day on, Ms. Chow began paying close attention to the sermons. She learned how to forgive herself through the understanding that Christ forgave her and the world through His loving sacrifice on the cross. But it took her a while to completely believe the message that God forgives all sins and extends abundant grace over everything. She said:

“I kept thinking that there has to be a catch. Even though I aborted my babies, I am still redeemed if I trust in Jesus Christ? No way! But that’s how much He loves me. It’s not fair that I did what I did and am forgiven. But the fact is that I am forgiven and free from this bondage because Jesus paid my penalty through His sacrifice.

My faith grew the more I understood God’s love for me. One day, I was finally able to forgive myself and release the burden that I was trying to carry on my own. I had tasted and seen everything good that this world had to offer me, and it wasn’t enough. But walking with Christ blows my mind every day.”

Finding Freedom Through Faith and God

Through faith in God and access to the surrounding community, Ms. Chow learned that you always have support and are never alone.

Her continued journey has taught her that the shame and guilt from your past can blind you from forgiving yourself and moving forward in life. By accepting and acknowledging your actions, professing what you did and seeking forgiveness, then you can start taking steps toward a path of redemption, freedom from the bondage of your past, and love for yourself and the people around you.

She explained:

“There is something more to life than yourself. Even though it is a continual journey, there is courage and strength building within in knowing that God and His community are beside you to help with your healing and growth as a person. The more you can accept and understand your past, the more relief, fearlessness and freedom you will feel as you move forward.

We are all human, we are all flawed and we all have struggles. It is never our place to judge or to condemn anyone but to support one another and provide compassion. We are all created in God’s image, we are all born with dignity and beauty because we are His creation.

In the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., ‘Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.’”

A New Life, a New Purpose

Ms. Chow came to the realization that while you can always receive help and support, you are here to help and support others in return.

She now spends her time—when she’s not filming on set—sharing her past and faith as a way of outreach to help others in need. She’s still healing from her past, but she says that she is no longer lost, in darkness or a slave to fear.

One way she provides outreach is through her YouTube channel, where she discusses tough issues such as God and the entertainment industry, abortion, divorce, pornography and more. She has a newfound sense of confidence, boldness and strength as she continues on her journey.

As she told me:

“Being a Christian and having faith and community doesn’t necessarily make life easier, but you don’t walk alone, and you don’t have to take life on by yourself. There is guidance and redemption. You have an awareness of life, how it works and the bigger picture.”

You can learn more about Jessica Chow, her outreach and acting career below.

Instagram | YouTube Channel | IMDb | 31:30 Beloved Website | Twitter

Actress Jessica Chow Interview and Premiere

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Life After Abortion: An Actress’ Journey From Pain and Despair to Faith and Freedom

Jessica Chow is an up-and-coming actress who made appearances on popular TV shows such as Colony, Jane the Virgin and Bad Teacher. You may have also seen her in national commercials with AT&T, Samsung, Wal-Mart, Skechers and Best Buy.

Actress Jessica Chow at various premieres

Her journey as an actress, however, pales in comparison to her quest to find peace after having two abortions and overcoming the feelings of shame, despair and loneliness that stalked her for years afterward.

For Ms. Chow, if she had not found faith and a strong community of support that showed her love and forgiveness, she would have never discovered the healing and redemption that led to her helping other women struggling to cope with life after abortion. I was able to interview Ms. Chow to share her journey.

The Beginning: The Surprise of Pregnancy and Making a Decision on Abortion

Her story begins like many others. She was a young college graduate from a prestigious university who was preoccupied with her burgeoning career and many social interactions. She had a lot of friends, was dating a nice guy and living in the heart of Beverly Hills.

One day, everything changed. She started feeling different; her body felt off. At first, she thought she was coming down with something, but this “illness” didn’t feel like anything she’d ever felt before. After a few days had passed, though, she almost subconsciously knew that this wasn’t a cold but something more. Was she pregnant? Before she even took the test, she already seemed to know.

When her pregnancy test came out positive, she was flooded with emotions. She immediately felt guilt, shame and fear, and her mind raced about who was to blame for this surprise pregnancy and how she could “cover things up.”

She felt completely alone as she tried figuring out what to do. She was scared and confused, and she didn’t know where to turn. She thought about how she had her whole life ahead of her, and a pregnancy was the last thing she expected to deal with. In a world that encourages self-preservation, especially at a young age, she focused on what was “best” for her future.

With that mindset, she started considering an abortion. She thought that if she got rid of “it,” things would go back to how they were. “No harm. Problem solved. Right?”

Still in a quandary about her situation, she reached out to a close friend who only affirmed this way of thinking. The advice was calculated, almost like a business decision. “You have your career and your entire future to think about. It’s a no-brainer, you have to have an abortion,” her friend urged.

So, at the young age of 22, Ms. Chow decided to have an abortion.

Coping With the Emotional Impact of Abortion

She was not, however, prepared for the emotional impact that she faced afterward. She felt isolated.  Who could she talk to about her situation, who could she ask for guidance? Having an abortion is a taboo, no one shares openly about it for fear of judgment and reprisal.

Jessica described her feelings after the procedure:

“I woke up expecting to be relieved, but, instead, I felt as if the joy was sucked out of my heart. I just knew that something was wrong, and I did something awful. I felt a kind of deep bondage and a darkness sweep over me.”

She expected freedom after the abortion, but instead, she felt deep roots of shame begin to plant within her heart. She tried convincing herself that her pregnancy and abortion were just speedbumps that needed to be put out of her mind in order to continue moving forward. She tried justifying her decision with thoughts like:

“I made my choice so there’s no turning back. A lot of other girls do what I did so that makes it normal. I was only 5 weeks along, so I didn’t do anything wrong since it technically wasn’t a baby yet. It’s not a big deal.”

But these thoughts were only temporary and faded quickly. No matter how hard she tried, she continued to feel pain from her emotional torment. She could not help but think about how she “went into the clinic with a life and left without one.”

Ms. Chow explained:

“Moving on does not always equate to moving forward. Without true healing and complete forgiveness of yourself, the hurt of a deep wound is only suppressed. If it is not released, then it begins festering and seeping out of you through anger, malice and irritability.”

Ms. Chow indeed had lingering feelings of regret, remorse and resentment that were covered up as she lacked the guidance to cope in a healthy manner. She tried to bury and suppress these feelings of shame to no avail. So she tried distracting herself from these dark emotions by filling her empty time with work, traveling, partying and toxic relationships. She began isolating herself with this “dark secret,” and eventually her pain manifested into self-destructive behavior that led her into the world of raving and drugs.

The Turning Point: From Despair to Finding Community and Faith

She had made friends with people that pushed her further into emotional distress by encouraging this destructive lifestyle. Many of these people had deep emotional problems of their own, but they bonded by numbing their pain together through parties, drugs and alcohol. It seemed like a truly loving community, but it was a cheap imitation that only lasted until the night ended or the high wore off.

Unfortunately, this lifestyle is also prone to create more problems, which happened when Ms. Chow found out that she was pregnant again and decided the only way out was another abortion. She was now at a breaking point. Nothing she tried to relieve her overwhelming emotional pain worked. With her attempts at numbing the pain only driving her to a darker place, she had almost lost all hope.

Finding a Positive Community of People

Then her brother introduced her to Reality L.A., where she met a strong, patient and uplifting community of people who were very different from what she knew. She felt an overwhelming sense of warmth, acceptance and love whenever she was with them.

However, she was hesitant to believe that the love of this community was authentic because her past experiences created a deep distrust of the people around her. “People’s true intentions always seemed to have ulterior motives,” she recalled.

Over time, she slowly began to embrace this group and their approach to life. She felt comfortable with these people as they accepted each other, flaws and all, and didn’t pass judgment. They actually took the time to listen and support each other rather than trying to “fix” one another. The relationships that she developed were more about giving to each other than taking.

It was enlightening and a breath of fresh air. She began to realize that she didn’t have to walk life alone. There are people who really cared about her as a person—regardless of her past—and delighted in helping each other lead a fulfilling and satisfying life.

Finding Faith

As she began spending more time with this group that went to church and had faith in God, she was curious who this “God” was. She noticed that when they prayed, it sounded like they knew him intimately and personally. She said:

“They sounded like they were talking to someone – a close friend. So one day I decided to go to a church service at @realityLA to see what this God was all about. I don’t remember the sermon but I do remember the worship. Reality L.A. turns down the lights so everyone can have their time of worship without fear of anyone watching. It provides a safe space of privacy but also intimacy with the Lord.”

She recalled that:

 “The very first note that the woman sang dropped me to my knees and I began sobbing. It was the most beautiful voice I’d ever heard as she sang lyrics like, ‘Spirit lead me where trust is without borders. Let me walk upon the waters wherever you would call me. Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander and my faith would be made stronger’ and ‘God, consume me from the inside out’ and ‘there is power in the name of Jesus to break every chain’.”

She explained her moment of enlightenment:

“This was when I met the Holy Spirit. I didn’t hear words or a voice, but I felt entirely at peace as He communicated to me that He is here. He is with me and always had been. I have never been alone because He knows me. He knows that I am sad, angry and in pain, and He wants me to trust Him so that He can free me from all my pain. He understands and is compassionate, and it was the gentlest embrace I’d ever felt.”

From that day on, Ms. Chow began paying close attention to the sermons. She learned how to forgive herself through the understanding that Christ forgave her and the world through His loving sacrifice on the cross. But it took her a while to completely believe the message that God forgives all sins and extends abundant grace over everything. She said:

“I kept thinking that there has to be a catch. Even though I aborted my babies, I am still redeemed if I trust in Jesus Christ? No way! But that’s how much He loves me. It’s not fair that I did what I did and am forgiven. But the fact is that I am forgiven and free from this bondage because Jesus paid my penalty through His sacrifice.

My faith grew the more I understood God’s love for me. One day, I was finally able to forgive myself and release the burden that I was trying to carry on my own. I had tasted and seen everything good that this world had to offer me, and it wasn’t enough. But walking with Christ blows my mind every day.”

Finding Freedom Through Faith and God

Through faith in God and access to the surrounding community, Ms. Chow learned that you always have support and are never alone.

Her continued journey has taught her that the shame and guilt from your past can blind you from forgiving yourself and moving forward in life. By accepting and acknowledging your actions, professing what you did and seeking forgiveness, then you can start taking steps toward a path of redemption, freedom from the bondage of your past, and love for yourself and the people around you.

She explained:

“There is something more to life than yourself. Even though it is a continual journey, there is courage and strength building within in knowing that God and His community are beside you to help with your healing and growth as a person. The more you can accept and understand your past, the more relief, fearlessness and freedom you will feel as you move forward.

We are all human, we are all flawed and we all have struggles. It is never our place to judge or to condemn anyone but to support one another and provide compassion. We are all created in God’s image, we are all born with dignity and beauty because we are His creation.

In the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., ‘Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.’”

A New Life, a New Purpose

Ms. Chow came to the realization that while you can always receive help and support, you are here to help and support others in return.

She now spends her time—when she’s not filming on set—sharing her past and faith as a way of outreach to help others in need. She’s still healing from her past, but she says that she is no longer lost, in darkness or a slave to fear.

One way she provides outreach is through her YouTube channel, where she discusses tough issues such as God and the entertainment industry, abortion, divorce, pornography and more. She has a newfound sense of confidence, boldness and strength as she continues on her journey.

As she told me:

“Being a Christian and having faith and community doesn’t necessarily make life easier, but you don’t walk alone, and you don’t have to take life on by yourself. There is guidance and redemption. You have an awareness of life, how it works and the bigger picture.”

You can learn more about Jessica Chow, her outreach and acting career below.

Instagram | YouTube Channel | IMDb | 31:30 Beloved Website | Twitter

Actress Jessica Chow Interview and Premiere

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