2008 Volume 13 Issue 3 Pages 115-126
The purpose of this study is to elucidate the ambivalence that women experience in the decision making process concerning an induced abortion, their decision making state and the relationship with the depression experienced before and after the procedure. The subjects of the survey were 63 women over the age of 20 years who wished to undergo an induced abortion during the early stage of pregnancy. Before the surgery and at the follow-up examination, they were asked the questions shown on the balance sheet designed by the authors and fill out the questionnaire based on the Beck Depression Inventory. Subsequently it was found that these women were in an ambivalent state-a state in which they felt unable to continue pregnancy (pro-termination) and a desire to continue pregnancy (pro-continuation) -and when this ambivalence was exaggerated, they found it difficult to come to a decision. When the main force in decision making originated from someone other than the women themselves, indecision was further exaggerated: such decision making would become difficult and require more time before reaching a final decision. However, the certainty of the decision was not different from the case when the main decision makers were the women themselves. Those women who were ambivalent were much depressed before surgery and the depressive state failed to improve after the procedure. These findings indicated that it is necessary to support their decision and extend psychological care to those who require continuous assistance during their psychological maladaptation both before and after termination.