Talk:Abortion and mental health

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Recent edits[edit]

Jytdog recently reverted a large number of edits by Saranoon. I don't propose to discuss those. However, there was one section leftover that appears new compared to a few weeks ago, which reads as follows:

"The idea that abortion was linked to negative psychological effects was widely reflected in the psychiatric literature pre-dating the legalization of abortion in the United Kingdom and the United States.[1]"

The Grisez book was by a philosopher and does not, on the face of it, seem like a good source to support the claim being made that the psychiatric literature (so some interpretation of WP:MEDRS may apply) reflected these views. Nor is any mention made of alternate views at the time: e.g. Osofsky & Osofsky (American Journal of Orthopsychiatry. 42(1):48–60, 1972, doi:10.1111/j.1939-0025.1972.tb02470.x) comes to quite a different view.

There is then another section that reads:

"This modified opinion was influenced by a growing body of literature showing a link between abortion and mental health problems, including a 30 year longitudinal study of about 500 women born in Christchurch New Zealand[2][3][4] and a Cornwall inquest into the abortion related suicide of a well known British artist, Emma Beck.[3][5]"

Again, is this accurate and does it meet MEDRS?

References

  1. ^ Germain Grisez, Abortion: the Myths, the Realities, and the Arguments (New York: Corpus Books, 1972)
  2. ^ Cite error: The named reference :3 was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  3. ^ a b Cite error: The named reference :4 was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  4. ^ Cite error: The named reference :5 was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  5. ^ "Artist hanged herself after aborting her twins". 2008-02-22. ISSN 0307-1235. Retrieved 2018-10-08.

-- Bondegezou (talk) 17:42, 21 November 2018 (UTC)

When looking at previous edits, I saw that another editor had cited the Grisez book previously, though his/her edit was reverted. I thought it was perhaps misplaced but a valid reference and contribution to the article. So, I inserted it in the fashion you described above. I believe it does qualify since it is a true academic review of the literature at that time. (Rather than deleting contributions of editors, I try to look for ways to include them.)
Regarding the second section, as you noted, the statement regarding the impact of the Fergusson study on the request for an update of the RCP statement is accurate and cites two peer reviewed articles and a newspaper article from the UK discussing the change in the context of UK law and politics...and since this section is regarding the history of this issue in law and politics, source policy regarding history and politics is applicable, not MEDRS.
Finally, you reverted the opening sentence in which I cite systematic reviews that meet the MEDRS standard...including several which are more relevant than the APA and NCCMH reviews because they are most recent. As you may know, MEDRS recommends reliance on more recent reviews. While you may feel that this "a list of systematic reviews doesn't add much," I disagree for two reasons. First, the list will help readers find the systematic reviews that are available to advance their own research. This will be helpful for college and high school students, for example. Second, this opening sentence and list is a precursor for further development of this section since these other reviews should be included in the discussion per the requirements of MEDRS to give due weight to the entirety of the literature reviews, not just a selected couple. Fergusson's review, for example, needs to be discussed, and it is in line with other reviews also cited. Since you do not disagree that this list is inaccurate, but simply have the opinion that it not "add much" according to some arbitrary standard of your own, I would ask you to revert your own reversion. As indicated above, I believe it is good policy to look for way to include editors contributions and sources. Move it around, or reword if it you think that will improve i . . . that is what collaborative editing is all about. But simply deleting it because you question how much it "adds" to the article is counterproductive.--Saranoon (talk) 18:25, 21 November 2018 (UTC)
If the Grisez book was previously removed, then I support that past decision and believe we should stick to it. It looked like a polemic to me and not to be a valid review of the psychiatric literature, unlike Osofsky & Osofsky. If we want something more historical, I suggest Osofsky & Osofsky or something similar -- something from the psychiatric literature -- is a better source.
The article should summarise what systematic reviews and guidelines say. Your list of various systematic reviews merely said that they criticised each other, but didn't offer any summary of what they say. That is not a balanced summary of the literature. It gives a false impression that there isn't a broad consensus. Bondegezou (talk) 11:06, 22 November 2018 (UTC)

Necessity for including MEDRS Reviews in order to provide Due Weight[edit]

Previously, Bondegezou deleted citations to peer reviewed reviews of the literature alleging that the mere citation of these sources did not substantially contribute to the article. He is correct in noting that these articles should be given greater weight in light of policy regarding due weight and a preference for more recent reviews WP:PSMED: "Look for reviews published in the last five years or so, preferably in the last two or three years. The range of reviews you examine should be wide enough to catch at least one full review cycle, containing newer reviews written and published in the light of older ones and of more-recent primary studies."---Saranoon (talk) 18:04, 26 November 2018 (UTC)

I don't think this comment adequately explains your continued hedging about the fact that the current scientific evidence does not support the claim that abortion causes mental health problems. –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 18:16, 26 November 2018 (UTC)
Then you aren't reading the content and the reviews carefully enough. The most recent review, by Fergusson, concludes that there actually is a small, measurable effect of abortion on mental health of women who abort compared to women who carry unwanted pregnancies to term based on 14 studies, including a 20+ year longitudinal study. Please read the [Fergusson review] and MEDRS policy. If you would like to help summarize the Fergusson review in a way you feel makes it most accessible to readers, please do.--Saranoon (talk) 18:24, 26 November 2018 (UTC)
I agree with Roscelese. You are cherry-picking the 5-year thing while violating the underlying principles behind WP:MEDRS. (I feel qualified to say that, since I played a major role in writing that guideline). The guideline is designed to ensure we provide readers with clear, accurate, and unbiased medical information. Your activity here—your sole activity on Wikipedia, as far as I can tell—has been to try to obscure a clear statement of scientific consensus on this article by any means necessary. It is disruptive and tendentious, and I am formally asking you to stop. MastCell Talk 20:17, 26 November 2018 (UTC)
It appears that you are attacking me rather than discussing the content of the article. No one can dispute that the reviews I have cited are (a) peer reviewed medical journal reviews, (b) meet all the requirements for being considered reliable secondary sources per MEDRS, and (c) that the MEDRS policy requires giving due weight to all such reviews in some reasonable proportion to the number of reviews and recency of the reviews providing a perspective on the topic.
A number of editors of this article appear to argue that Wiki-editors know more than peer reviewers and that "we" have a right to ignore MEDRS and delete content that cites any peer reviewed review articles that criticize or question the conclusions of seven to ten year old review articles that are preferred by the same wiki-editors. That is hardly in keeping with the "spirit of MEDRS" which clearly requires balance of viewpoints from reviews that been accepted for publication in peer reviewed journals. There is no basis in WP:MEDRS for constantly deleting all mention of reviews that post-date, critique, or improve on prior reviews.
It is especially notable that while no one has identified inaccuracies in any of the material I have submitted, nor can dispute that the material is based on reliable secondary reviews published in peer reviewed journals, the response to my edits has been complete reversion rather than seeking ways to include the material in a clearer or more proportionate manner. If, for example, one believe the paragraph I added regarding Fergusson's review of the unwanted deliveries vs abortion in light of the APA, NCCMH and Coleman reviews could be shortened or made more clear or accurate, the proper thing to do is to edit the material . . . not just delete it. Does anyone here understand the idea behind "collaborative editing?" The goal is to find ways to include pertinent material...not to simply make up excuses for deleting it.
Please either (a) clearly describe why the material I contribute it inaccurate so I can edit it to make it more accurate, or (b) edit it to make it more accurate yourself, or (c) restore the material and work in a collaborative fashion to improve this article rather than block improvements of this article.--Saranoon (talk) 22:53, 26 November 2018 (UTC)
One of the reasons that WP:MEDRS exists is to prevent exactly what you're trying to do. As an analogy, it would be possible to create a Wikipedia article, using only peer-reviewed publications, which would make it sound like HIV doesn't exist and is not the cause of AIDS. You're trying to do something similar: you are cherry-picking peer-reviewed papers and arranging them in such a way as to convey an inaccurate and misleading impression of the state of knowledge on this topic. What WP:MEDRS says (among other things) is that it's not enough simply to cite a collection of peer-reviewed papers; the sources must be used in a way that accurately conveys the overall state of knowledge in the field. It absolutely violates WP:MEDRS—and violates our basic responsibility to be honest with the reader—to present a collection of cherry-picked papers in order to rebut or undermine the global scientific consensus on a topic. You are doing exactly that. At this point, the policy issue has been explained to you many times, by several different people. That you persist in adding the same material, along with repetitive walls of text, is a behavioral issue; it falls under tendentious editing, and soup-spitting. MastCell Talk 00:44, 27 November 2018 (UTC)
1. That you decline to identify any inaccuracies in my edits must be interpreted as an admission of my accuracy.
2. That you decline my request to edit my changes in a way that, in your opinion, puts the cited material into proper context, must be interpreted as a refusal to engage in collaborative editing.
3. My understanding, which is reflected in many of your own arguments on this page, is that MEDRS objects to use of primary sources, even peer reviewed primary source, and favors instead literature reviews that are published in peer reviewed medical journals. It is exactly such literature reviews that I have cited. That is not cherry picking. That is a sincere effort to include reviews which show the evolving nature of this area of research. In my view, it is clear that editors who insist on citing only a few of the many literature reviews, especially older ones, and object to even a citation to newer reviews which have found fault in prior reviews who are cherry picking...and this is in clear violation of the requirement to give due weight to conflicting reviews.
4. Give me an example of a peer reviewed literature review that has concluded that HIV doesn't exist. Or are you just making things up to justify blocking content that clearly does cite peer reviewed literature reviews?
5. Please give a detailed explanation, preferably from a peer reviewed source, why Fergusson (2013) gives a "misleading impression of the state of knowledge on this topic." If you actually read the paper, it is clear that Fergusson, who is pro-choice, is critical of all prior reviews and is presenting evidence to the effect that the mental health effects of abortion are not as great as abortion critics like to say but as cannot be as easily dismissed as the APA and NCCMH reviews suggested when one really does look at the studies that compare delivering an unwanted pregnancy to abortion. Seriously. Stop ignoring this obligation. Fergusson post-dates these earlier reviews. His review was subject to peer review and published in a highly respected journal and therefore "endorsed" as at least a reasonable interpretation of the literature and as a contribution to the knowledge and debate over this issue. Silencing this source by an asserting, as you appear to be doing, that "the Fergusson team should be ignored in favor of the older reviews by the APA or NCCMH" is simply not reasonable, and is clearly not suggested or supported in letter or spirit by WP:MEDRS. (I realize MastCell is asserting that he is the governing authority on MEDRS given his contributions to that page, but even a governing authority should be able to identify what the problems are with citing Fergusson or other reviews. Moreover, it is my understanding that WP does not actually give such governing authority to individual editors.)
6. You claim that you and others have explained policy to me, but policy is actually explained at WP:MEDRS. The only thing you and others have have explained is that WP:MEDRS is not applied to the abortion and mental health article because a select group of editors policing this article have decided to exclude any reliable, peer reviewed literature reviews, or even citations to these reviews, whenever they conflict with your presentation of the 2008 APA and 2011 NCCMH reviews. It appears that the "consensus" of the policing editors is that the literature must be "frozen" in time, and only those reviews selected, and as interpreted (often incompletely) by your group of policing editors should be allowed despite WP:MEDRS guidelines and preferences for inclusion of alternative views and more recent reviews.
7. I'm a bit confused by your constant accusations of "tendentious editing." Does this mean that editors who actually reading MEDRS and assume that other editors will read and respect those guidelines when introducing reliable secondary sources (medical literature reviews) published in peer reviewed medical journals must be persistent when seeking to overcome the policing of articles by those who seek to promote a POV? If so, yes, I am being persistent precisely because WP:MEDRS makes it clear that the material I am inserting is appropriate, relevant, reliable and should be given due weight.
8. Please read WP:PRESERVE. We could make headway if editors would seek to fix and improve upon my edits rather than simply delete them, wholesale. The content I have provided is accurate and well sourced. If editors believe that other sections should be expanded to give more weight to other views, do that! But deleting well sourced and accurate content simply that is not included anywhere else in the article, is disruptive and anti-collaborative. --Saranoon (talk) 01:20, 27 November 2018 (UTC)
Tendentious editing is a manner of editing which is partisan, biased or skewed taken as a whole. It does not conform to the neutral point of view, and fails to do so at a level more general than an isolated comment that was badly thought out. On Wikipedia, the term also carries the connotation of repetitive attempts to insert or delete content or behavior that tends to frustrate proper editorial processes and discussions.
This is exactly what you are doing. Please try listening to what your fellow editors are trying to tell you. Walls of text with enumerated demands do not inspire collaboration. You are cherry picking policy, and attempting to place wildly unreliable sources (Coleman) into this article. You should not be surprised that such attempts will be resisted. — ArtifexMayhem (talk) 05:16, 27 November 2018 (UTC)
Why do you shift to Coleman rather than Fergusson? If you only object to Coleman, practice WP:PRESERVE to find a place for Fergusson, which clearly belongs here. Indeed Fergusson was prominently included for at least a full year from July 28, 2017 until August of 2018 when it was deleted without discussion or consensus. Regarding [Coleman (2011)], her review was published by the Royal College of Psychiatrists in the British Journal of Psychiatry, the very same group which petitioned for the NCCMH review. When you label sources that you personally object to as "wildly unreliable" and block inclusion of such sources you are substituting your own opinion for that of peer reviewers and editors of medical journals...in complete violation of WP policy. Rather than fighting so hard to exclude material from reliable secondary sources, please be collaborative in helping to find ways to include these additional sources. I understand that there can always be disagreement over how much weight to give to each review, but there is no legitimate excuse for completely censuring literature reviews that have been published in respected peer reviewed medical journals--especially reviews that post-date earlier reviews. --Saranoon (talk) 16:40, 27 November 2018 (UTC)
On health matters we regularly update content as new high quality reviews come out, dropping old ones and content based on them as we go, per the spirt and letter of WP:MEDDATE. Sometimes we keep the old ones to show the history of how the evidence changed with time. In this article the section is "current evidence" and in that context there is little reason to keep older reviews. I just reviewed the sourcing overall and in this section we cite Charles 2008 (PMID 19014789), the 2008 APA review, Horvath 2017 (PMID 28905259), the Cochrane 2013 review (PMID 23450532) and Grigoriadis 2013 (PMID 23656857), the 2011 Royal College review. I reckon we should keep the APA and Royal College reviews as they are major medical bodies but the evidence-based reviews should be updated as we go.
Given that there is no reason for re-instating the 2013 Ferguson review (PMID 23553240). It also asks a strange question - namely whether there is evidence that having an abortion has positive mental health outcomes and frames that in the context of abortion policy (it should have positive mental health benefits, if we are going to do it). This is somewhat odd. In any case one thing that is interesting is that it notes that A better comparison would be between those having abortion and those refused abortion.
That is exactly what the Horvath 2017 review is dealing with - what evidence based on that better comparison shows, and how it differs from the results of worse comparisons. There is reason to keep the Cochrane review as the community considers those to be of especially high quality, but we should ditch Charles 2008 for sure per WP:MEDDATE, along with Grigoriadis 2013 and yes we should keep 2013 Ferguson out as they are all a) at the tail end of the approximate 5-year time frame given in MEDDATE but most importantly per the spirit of MEDDATE, are based on evidence that even Fergusson says is worse than the kind of evidence Horvath is analyzing. We should always be using the best evidence. Jytdog (talk) 17:21, 27 November 2018 (UTC) (strike side comment that is causing distraction Jytdog (talk) 20:22, 27 November 2018 (UTC))
I can support having Horvath in an expanded list of all peer reviewed literature reviews. I can also support giving Horvath a moderate discussion which also reflects the criticisms of the Turnaway Study (previously discussed and cited on this talk page), especially the low participation and high drop out rate. That low participation rate and other problems mean the Turnaway Study results are not generalizable to the whole population. Still, I can agree that it is recent research that deserves attention within the context of questions raised about it. In the same way, the APA and NCCMH reviews deserved attention, but also within the context of questions raised about them. In that regard, Fergusson clearly belongs, not only because of its recency but also because it addresses questions raised and unanswered by the NCCMH and APA review. Both of the latter suggested that the rates of mental illness are likely similar after abortion and after delivery of an unplanned pregnancy, but Fergusson's review of that specific set of the literature showed that their assumptions were not supported by the actual evidence. Instead of parity, there are "small to moderate" greater risk of mental health problems associated with abortion, as demonstrated by eight studies examining 14 outcomes.
The other issue Fergusson addresses, which you call a "strange question" is not strange at all. In fact, the 2008 RCP statement recommended that a new literature review "should consider whether there is evidence for psychiatric indications for abortion" (and elsewhere, should explore "possible risks and benefits to physical and mental health.") The same concern about identifying when abortion is beneficial to mental health was also raised by the Rawlinson Report. It is actually very important both in English law which allows abortion only when the benefits outweigh the risks and in general medical ethics, wherein medical treatments are generally limited to circumstances when the treatment is shown to have positive effects. Therefore, the question of when, how, and for whom abortion improves women's lives is therefore an important one. Indeed, in the 1960's it was hypothesized that easy access to abortion would reduce depression and anxiety rates among women, in general, by reducing exposure to unplanned pregnancies and raising unplanned children. Have you read Fergusson's entire paper, or only the abstract? In any event, as article editors it is our job to reflect what is reported in the reliable secondary sources per MEDRS. We should not be deleting material just because, in one or more editors' personal opinion, the researchers address a "strange question."--Saranoon (talk) 20:11, 27 November 2018 (UTC)
Yes I read Fergusson. You are correct that people's personal views don't matter and I didn't raise that in my actual discussion of using it. To avoid further confusion that you will take it that way, I have struck it. You are not dealing with MEDDATE which is the relevant issue, as I made clear. Jytdog (talk) 20:22, 27 November 2018 (UTC)
(edit conflict) If Fergusson's work is compelling, then expert groups will reassess their conclusions and update them, at which point we will need to update our article. In the meantime, it doesn't make sense to prioritize that one paper in the face of extensive conflicting evidence and expert consensus to the contrary. It smacks of "teaching the controversy" and trying to artificially create more uncertainty in the mind of the reader than actually exists. That's not how we present medical information to our readers. MastCell Talk 20:24, 27 November 2018 (UTC)
Where in WP:MEDRS does it say that once a medical organization publishes a review, all subsequent reviews should be excluded from WP until that medical organization updates their review in light of subsequent reviews? Am I just missing that guideline? Or is that just a MastCell personal preference? As I read the guidelines, if a literature review undergoes peer review and is published in a medical journal that is what makes it a reliable secondary source, period.
You also suggest that giving any space to reviews other than those of the APA and NCCMH "artificially create(s) more uncertainty...than actually exists." Have you not read the reviews? Even the APA and NCCMH agree that there is a great deal of uncertainty given the impossibility of doing true double blind studies, volunteer self selection, drop outs, and other methodological studies. As a result, they would agree that their conclusions are based not on solid, irrefutable evidence, but rather on what they consider to be their own best reasonable interpretations of a very mixed bag of evidence. Do you need me to find the page numbers for these admissions of the uncertainties regarding the evidence? Moreover, existing uncertainty is also underscored by several literature reviews following the APA review that express a variety of competing conclusions (Coleman, Fergusson, Bellini, to name a few). To hide those references and the competing viewpoints from readers clearly violates WP:DUEWEIGHT which requires all viewpoints to be covered in appropriate weight.
That multiple critical reviews and competing views have been published in leading journals (including the RCP's own journal in the case of Coleman) demonstrates that these other reviews and opinions are not "fringe" opinions but instead widely accepted as reasonable opinions by peer reviewers and medical journal editors (including the RCP, which you pretend has adopted the NCCMH review as it's final word on this topic). In your opinion, the majority opinion is that of the 2008 APA review and 2011 NCCMH review. I have no problem with these reviews having a prominent role in the article. But they are not the last word, and should not preclude discussion of other reviews until such time as the APA or NCCMH notify us that they have read and analyzed these subsequent reviews. --Saranoon (talk) 20:55, 27 November 2018 (UTC)
MEDRS doesn't say that, nor did I say that. Jytdog (talk) 10:28, 28 November 2018 (UTC)
No, you did not. But it appears that MastCell is saying that any reviews published after the APA and NCCMH reviews should be ignored until these two "expert groups will reassess their conclusions and update them...." That appears to be his personal standard. I see no support for it in MEDRS guidelines.--Saranoon (talk) 20:38, 28 November 2018 (UTC)
  • Removed Coleman again since her work is widely understood to be junk. –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 04:36, 4 December 2018 (UTC)
    • I believe it is up to you to document that claim based on MEDRS sources. Please show me evidence that the Royal College of Psychiatrists has withdrawn her paper on the basis that it is "widely understood to be junk." The opinion of Wikipedia editors regarding a medical review is irrelevant. Only peer reviewed literature reviews published in medical journals qualify for MEDRS. And Cougle clearly qualifies and has been covered in subsequent reviews, including NCCMH and Fergusson, which affirm it's relevance.--Saranoon (talk) 04:56, 4 December 2018 (UTC)
    • Looking through the history of this article, there are clearly a number of editors, such as Trappist_the_monk and Principina and Geremia who have tried to get MEDRS that offer different conclusions included in the article per MEDRS and DUEWEIGHT.--Saranoon (talk) 00:18, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
      I think that you are much mistaken and are putting words into my mouth that I have never spoken. I have edited this article three times: here, here, and here; all of these edits are technical fixes to cs1|2 templates. Please retract your false accusation.—Trappist the monk (talk) 00:39, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
      @Saranoon: You're apparently misrepresenting Trappist. And Geremia may not be the best example to make your case, since he was topic-banned from abortion-related articles for edit-warring in violation of medical article sourcing policies and pushing for sourcing at variance with sourcing guidelines in medical articles (namely pitting primary sources against secondary sources). Perhaps that is useful context for your crusade here, though, which is equally disruptive and at odds with site policy.

      Specifically, I am unclear why you keep adding the Coleman study to the External Links section. That section contains only links to consensus guidelines from expert groups; it does not contain links to individual papers, of which there are many on this topic. If we were to choose a single paper to best represent current scientific thought on the topic, why do you think it should be Coleman's? Her work is held in quite low esteem by expert groups, it would appear, and other researchers have failed to reproduce her findings. I would contend that no serious person, attempting in good faith to honestly convey the current state of knowledge on the topic, would choose that one paper as the sole or best representation to highlight. MastCell Talk 00:41, 12 December 2018 (UTC)

I mistakenly interpreted Trappist's here as part of, or in agreement with an edit by IntoThinAir regarding the importance of including coverage of the peer reviewed study by Coleman. There is hardly any "accusation." Regardless of who made what edits, there has clearly been an effort by a number of editors to give WP:DUEWEIGHT to the literature reviews published in peer reviewed journals subsequent to the APA and, in some cases, the NCCMH and RCOG reviews. These include Coleman, Bellini and Fergusson. It appears that there has been a systematic effort to delete all mention of these reviews in complete defiance of WP:MEDRS guidelines. Clearly, Fergusson's 2013 review is the most recent and the most pointed and undisputed effort to examine the evidence that the NCCMH review overlooked, namely a quantative review of studies comparing women who had abortions to those who delivered unwanted pregnancies. That should unquestionably be included in the article. Coleman's review should also be included as it is covered by both the NCCMH and Fergusson and was published by the RCP. MastCell's assertion that the article should only rely on reviews published by the APA and NCCMH is not supported by any policy I can find in WP:MEDRS which appears to treat all literature reviews published by respected peer reviewed medical journals as equal. To assert that Coleman and Fergusson are not experts in the field is ridiculous. Clearly, you can argue about how much weight should be given to each review, but WP:MEDRS supports the necessity to give all reviews at least some weight. As it stands, the article is totally unbalanced and ignores a substantial body of medical literature as interpreted in peer reviewed literature reviews. The only explanation for this is that a number of editors advancing a narrow POV insist that only the APA and NCCMH reviews should be covered. (In regard to the brief abortion and mental health section in the RCOG guidelines," it appears that they did not undertake an independent review but merely restated the conclusions of the NCCMH review. In that sense, while relevant, I don't think it carries as much weight as a "complete review" since it is mostly just a restatement of the prior reviews. I'm not arguing that it should not be cited, but rather that it does not add additional weight against covering the Coleman and Fergusson and Bellini reviews.––Saranoon (talk) 20:02, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
Saranoon, more or less every edit you make has been overturned by a consensus of other editors. I suggest you need to listen to what other editors are saying and perhaps spend some time working on other articles on Wikipedia and taking a break from here. Bondegezou (talk) 22:04, 12 December 2018 (UTC)

Notice that this Article Lacks Balanced POV per reliable peer reviewed literature reviews[edit]

WP:Neutral and WP:WEIGHT requires fairly represent all significant viewpoints that have been published by reliable sources. in proportion to the prominence of each viewpoint in the published. In articles related to medical matters, additional guidance is provided in WP:MEDRS which gives preference to more recently published literature reviews published in peer reviewed medical journals, preferably those within the last five years.

As you will see in previous sections of this talk page, and the archives, a number of editors believe that only two reviews, a 2008 review by the APA and a 2011 review by the NCCMH should be discussed or cited in the article. (Reference is also given to the RCOG guidelines which was not a new, independent review but rather a summary of the NCCMH findings)

In fact, numerous other peer reviewed reviews were published in the same time frame and subsequently which offered criticism, clarifications, and new analyses of the literature. These include:

Especially notable is the most recent review, Fergusson (2013), which was specifically designed to test the conclusion offered in the NCCMH review by means of a meta-analysis of only those studies which compared women who had abortions to similar women who carried an unwanted pregnancy to term (i.e. women who had planned pregnancies were excluded from the control group). The following summary of Fergusson's findings were included in the article for over a year, but were subsequently deleted:

A 2013 review by David M. Fergusson and colleagues undertook a re-appraisal of the all the studies (14 in total) examined in previous reviews that compared mental health outcomes between women who had abortions and women who carried an unintended/unwanted pregnancy to term (thereby excluding women who carried a wanted pregnancy to term).[45] Their review revealed that there no evidence that abortion has any therapeutic mental health benefits, i.e.; women who aborted unwanted pregnancies did not fare any better in regard to any mental health outcome examined as compared to women who carried unwanted pregnancies to term. Conversely, there was statistically significant evidence suggesting a small to moderate increased risk of substance use and suicidal behaviors following abortion versus delivery of unwanted pregnancies.[45]

The persistent deletion and exclusion of all peer reviewed medical reviews that have identified an association between abortion and mental health problems is a violation of neutrality. Even if some editors believe that decade old APA and NCCMH reviews still represent the majority view, the review articles published in peer reviewed journals that come to different conclusions are a still relevant minority view that is accepted as reasonable and noteworthy by peer reviewers and medical journal editors.

In fact, none of the editors on this page have disputed that the reviews by Fergusson and Coleman and Bellini are "significant viewpoints" or that they are not reliable secondary sources as defined by WP:MEDRS (namely, literature reviews published in peer reviewed journals. Moreovere, since even the APA review admits "it is clear that some women do experience sadness, grief, and feelings of loss following termination of a pregnancy, and some experience clinically significant disorders, including depression and anxiety" it is also clear that the "minority" views of Fergusson, Coleman and Bellini are not completely contradicted by the APA but are rather contested only in regard to the magnitude of the problem. Per policy, then, due weight requires that these other views and sources should be included "in proportion" to the number of literature reviews on the topic.--Saranoon (talk) 09:40, 18 December 2018 (UTC)

Your position has been rebutted many times before and you continue to ignore consensus.
Fergusson et al. is a re-analysis of studies examined in two other reviews. It is not itself a systematic review and WP:MEDRS prefers systematic reviews where possible. I don't see any reason to give it so much attention.
I also question your summary of the Fergusson paper. Here's how Steinberg et al. (2014a) summarise it: "For instance, in a reanalysis of a sample from New Zealand, Fergusson and colleagues30 found that, compared to women who gave birth to unwanted pregnancies, women who had abortions were not at a significant increased risk of subsequent anxiety disorders, depressive disorders, substance use disorders, and suicidal ideation when mental health at age 15, childhood adversities, and family environment were controlled in analyses." You've put a rather different spin on the results. Likewise, Steinberg et al. (2014b) use the Fergusson paper to support the following statement: "In models that control for confounding factors—such as prior mental health, prior or current adverse experiences, and sociodemographic factors—the association between abortion and subsequent mental health evaporates for mood and anxiety disorders, and suicidal ideation".
I note in passing that Fergusson's work has also been critiqued, e.g. by Leask, 2014. Bondegezou (talk) 14:43, 18 December 2018 (UTC)
By the way, Coleman (2011) was only "Published by the Royal College of Psychiatry" in the sense that they own the British Journal of Psychiatry. It was not commissioned by or endorsed by the RCP. It is not a statement of the RCP's position on anything. Bondegezou (talk) 17:12, 18 December 2018 (UTC)
You do not object to Fergusson being given "too much attention" but rather it being cited and given any attention at all. That is contrary to WP:DUEWEIGHT. You also misrepresent Fergusson as a reanalysis of two studies. In fact, it is a meta-analysis (the most highly valued form of a secondary source literature review) of 14 findings from 8 different studies, the studies being limited to only those identified in the only two other quantitative systematic reviews--Coleman and NCCMH--which compare women who were known to have delivered unwanted pregnancies to women who had abortions. In both cases, limiting the studies examined was in response to criticisms that Coleman's review included comparisons of women who aborted to women who carried to term. NCCMH specifically argued that it was best to only compare to women who had unwanted pregnancies (admitting that mental health rate problems are higher for abortion than for women who carry pregnancies, including wanted pregnancies to term). After excluding comparisons to all women giving birth, the NCCMH (like the APA) then concluded that there was likely no difference when compared to women who delivered unwanted pregnancies...but they offered no quantitative analysis of the eight studies that actually look at this question (just as the APA report ignored this analysis). Fergusson, a pro-choice atheist, by the way, was disappointed in the NCCMH's failure to do a meta-analysis of studies comparing abortion to birth of unwanted pregnancies. His review completes a job that he feels NCCMH left half done. Using the studies identified by NCCHM (and Coleman) he conducted a meta-analysis of just those eight which qualify (with 14 total outcomes measured). In addition, he did a second analysis (Table 2) in which he further narrowed the list of studies to those rated good or very good in the NCCMH review. That analysis showed a 134%, 291% and 69% increased risk, respectively, of alcohol misues, illicit drug misuse, and suicidal behavior in addition to higher rates of anxiety and depression.
As seen in both Fergusson's abstract and the body of the Fergusson review, Steinberg misrepresents the totality of his findings. To quote Fergusson's own summary statement: "There was suggestive but not completely consistent evidence of modestly elevated rates of mental health problems in women having abortion compared with women having unwanted or unintended pregnancy. These findings were particularly evident for alcohol and illicit drug use but were also evident for anxiety disorders and suicidal behaviours for analyses using an unwanted or unintended comparison."
That Fergusson is a reliable source per WP:MEDRS (as are Coleman and Bellini) is not in dispute. I have no objection to citations that may criticize Fergusson. I would note however that the the one you offer, Leask, is from a political perspective in a women's studies (not a psychological review). Even then, it is notable that Leask chief criticism of Fergusson's is that he found that mental health problems were only associated with women who reported "significant distress about the abortion." In other words, she argues, there is no evidence that abortion is "inherently an adverse life event," especially for women who do not report distress over their abortions. In essence, she is arguing that if abortion does not have inherent mental health risks for all women, it cannot be the sole cause of mental health problems. I have no problem with that distinction being covered in the article. But it should be a distinction made in the context of findings, like Fergusson's, which show that abortion may be a contributing cause to a "small to moderate increases in risks of some mental health problems" (from Fergusson's abstract).--Saranoon (talk) 17:20, 18 December 2018 (UTC)
Fergusson et al. is a re-meta-analysis (or perhaps a meta-re-analysis). It is not a full systematic review: it's a halfway thing, they've done a meta-analysis, but they've not done the paper selection. It is, in effect, a critique of those other reviews (as you say, "His review completes a job that he feels NCCMH left half done."). MEDRS prioritises systematic reviews. Fergusson et al. is allowable under MEDRS, but when it comes to DUEWEIGHT, we should clearly prioritise systematic reviews.
Let's look at your suggested summary of Fergusson et al. above: "there was statistically significant evidence suggesting a small to moderate increased risk of substance use and suicidal behaviors following abortion versus delivery of unwanted pregnancies". Let's look at what Fergusson and colleagues say: "There was suggestive but not completely consistent evidence of..." Your phrasing is more conclusive. I see no good argument that we need to include the Fergusson paper. But if we do, we should be clear about what it says.
You want to include a critique of NCCMH, i.e. Fergusson et al. OK, so where do we stop? There are critiques of Fergusson et al. A Wikipedia article is never going to capture all the back and forth of academic debate. Solution: stick with NCCMH. Bondegezou (talk) 17:55, 18 December 2018 (UTC)
That is an absurd argument. The whole point of WP:MEDRS is that articles should be updated in light of newer reviews, like Fergusson's. It is simply crazy to "set the article in stone" based on a single review that is eight years old!––Saranoon (talk) 20:45, 19 December 2018 (UTC)
  • Saranoon, the POV tag is not meant to be left indefinitely as a badge of shame. It's meant to indicate a dispute that will at some point conclude. Right now, it looks like people here generally disagree with your proposal. If you do not want the POV dispute to be closed against your opinion, what modifications to your proposal can you make? –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 21:04, 18 December 2018 (UTC)
The POV tag is meant to call attention to unbalanced articles and to invite editors who have not yet participated to take a look and participate. It should remain for at least weeks, perhaps months, until such time as a substantial number of non-involved editors have had a chance to contribute...or until the tagger, me, agrees that changes have been made to bring it into balance. The effort by Bondegezou to remove it after just two days is an example of how a number of editors feel they WP:OWNBEHAVIOR this article and can delete all relevant and reliable content that does not comport with their POV -- and even hide that fact by removing tags! Incredible! --Saranoon (talk) 20:45, 19 December 2018 (UTC)
I would add that Bondegezou edit summary is misleading and inaccurate: "one editor has disagreed with everyone else's consensus for a while now, but no evidence of any broader dispute." Examining the talk page history, including the archives, demonstrates that numerous editors have tried to correct the imbalance and censorship of reliable WP:MERS reviews but they have been bullied away with reversions and arguments to the effect that this article does not follow WP:MEDRS guidelines for inclusion of reliable sources, instead, a phalanx of editors works together to simply exert their own opinion that any reliable peer reviewed sources that question, challenge, or refine the conclusions of the APA and NCCMH must be excluded. My efforts to cite even a single one of these as a reference, without discussion, have also been reverted!! The censorship of the Fergusson, Coleman, and Bellini reviews is not supportable by any policy based arguments. It is POV pushing, which is exactly why I've put a POV tag on this article.––Saranoon (talk) 20:56, 19 December 2018 (UTC)
You've been pushing Fergusson for nearly a month. There's been an extensive discussion above already. The 7 other editors (including myself) who have participated in the discussion have all disagreed with you. Consensus is clear and it is tendentious of you to use the tag in this manner. Bondegezou (talk) 21:00, 19 December 2018 (UTC)
Pinging other participants in the discussion above: @Roscelese:, @MastCell:, @ArtifexMayhem:, @Trappist the monk:. (Jytdog has left Wikipedia.) Bondegezou (talk) 21:09, 19 December 2018 (UTC)
  • Saranoon's proposed changes have been discussed ad nauseum and there is clearly a consensus against them. At this point, I don't really see any new arguments being presented; Saranoon is simply rehashing her previous points in wall-of-text fashion and trying to force the material into the article by edit-warring. There is more than enough evidence of disruptive and tendentious editing here to justify a WP:AE report and a sanction, in my view, and I will eventually get around to filing one as time permits. On another note, I've removed the NPOV tag from the article, as it was being used improperly. The tag is not a consolation prize for editors who fail to gain consensus for their proposed changes. MastCell Talk 16:42, 23 December 2018 (UTC)
It is very inappropriate to remove a POV tag in violation of the rules for doing so. The whole point of POV tags is to invite uninvolved editors to participate. For example, it is likely that @Pudeo:, who supported my edit against a previous reversion, found the article through the POV tag noticeboard. Others might also want to become involved. It is notable that the Fergusson material was included for from July 28, 2017 until August of 2018 when it was deleted without discussion or consensus. That is a sign of POV pushing.
It is also notable that several of the editors objecting to giving any weight at all to the reviews by Fergusson, Coleman and Bellini (not even allowing a citation to these sources, much less their conclusions), have actually admitted that these peer reviewed papers are in fact reliable secondary sources per policy and WP:MEDRS at the reliable sources notice board, here. There, for example, MastCell agrees that the sources are reliable sources but defends total exclusion of these sources arguing that they should be given ZERO weight, in preference to his preferred and misrepresented sources (the RCP is not the same as the NCCMH), which is clearly a violation of WP:DUEWEIGHT and WP:MEDRS prioritization of more recent reviews. Even if it were accepted that Fergusson represents a minority opinion (which is not the case, as clearly no one has cited a subsequent literature review that has challenged his clarification of the NCCMH review), WP:DUEWEIGHT requires inclusion of this minority opinion in the article. There are clearly a lot of POV problems with the article, as has been noted in the talk pages by numerous editors over several years. The POV tag is clearly appropriate. Please stop violating policy regarding deletion of reliable sources, giving due weight to reliable sources, and removal of POV tags.––Saranoon (talk) 15:16, 24 December 2018 (UTC)
When to remove #1: "There is consensus on the talkpage or the NPOV Noticeboard that the issue has been resolved." There is consensus on the talk page above that your edits are not appropriate. Bondegezou (talk) 20:04, 24 December 2018 (UTC)
As noted, numerous editors have agreed that the sources I cite are reliable secondary sources per MEDRS[[1]]. The only objection raised is regarding how much weight should be given to what some editors argue is a minority view. (In fact, Fergusson's it is the latest view based on more detailed analyses and it has not been contradicted by any other literature reviews.) In any event, it is clear policy that due weight should be given to all viewpoints published in reliable sources. If you are claiming that there is a "consensus" of editors who agree that policy does not apply to this article, please explain why policy doesn't apply and by what authority a few editors can make that decision. Otherwise, please help to determine how, not if, the reviews by Fergusson, Coleman, and Bellini are to be represented in the article. That is required by both policy and WP:PRESERVE. Any other argument is simply one against WP:NPOV, which is why the POV tag is necessary and appropriate. --Saranoon (talk) 16:27, 27 December 2018 (UTC)
Again, Fergusson et al. is not a full systematic review. They have not done their own finding of studies. It cannot be any more up-to-date than the studies it is piggybacking on.
Due weight should be given. If a viewpoint is only represented in a small minority of less appropriate sources, then due weight can mean not including it.
You have suggested various changes. Every other editor in the Talk discussion above has rejected them. Consensus is clear, ergo the POV tag is inappropriate. You don't have to be happy with that, but you should respect it. Please stop with the accusations of bad faith and the wiki-lawyering. Bondegezou (talk) 17:04, 27 December 2018 (UTC)
First, WP:MEDRS does not limit reliable sources to those that are a "full systematic review." And since reviewers themselves decide on the scope of their reviews (NCCMH limited their review to just three questions), I'm not sure how you are defining a "full" systematic review. Second, Coleman's review is a full systematic review. It is certainly as "full" as the APA review since it includes all the studies the APA reviewed plus additional studies that met her search criteria. So are you saying Coleman should be cited instead of Fergusson? Third, Fergusson's study is a "full systematic review" of ALL the studies cited by the NCCMH and Coleman which use unwanted pregnancies delivered as the control group. Indeed, the introduction of his article makes clear that the purpose of his review was to undertake the meta-analysis to quantitatively test of the NCCMH's narrative conclusion regarding the presumed lack of difference between mental health after abortion to birth of an unwanted pregnancy. NCCMH pointed to this group of studies as a basis for their conclusions, but did not do a meta-analysis of this group of studies. Fergusson did. He provides the missing meta-analyses. Clearly, his review is of the same nature and type as the NCCMH review and meets all WP:MEDRS tests. If the NCCMH review is a reliable secondary source (which also includes a meta-analysis of different issues), so is Fergusson's review. Can't get much more relevant to the article than that.––Saranoon (talk) 20:04, 27 December 2018 (UTC)
My comments above were focused on the Fergusson et al. review, as that was the one you were focused on. MEDRS prioritises systematic reviews. You do not appear to understand what a systematic review is: I recommend the online learning at Cochrane. Bondegezou (talk) 16:08, 28 December 2018 (UTC)

Globalization[edit]

For an article on such a global subject, it seems focused too much on American politics, and the statements of American organizations. The United Kingdom gets a passing mention and the rest of the world is ignored. Rather problematic for an article that should not cover only one country. Dimadick (talk) 17:00, 27 December 2018 (UTC)

The reason why this is nearly all about American politics is probably because in much of the rest of the world (or at least the Western world with which I am most familiar) issues surrounding abortion are not a matter for political controversy in the same way as they are in the US. Most of the rest of us, even if we would not wish to see foetuses that we have had a part in producing aborted, accept that abortion is a basic freedom that pregnant women should have (and I find it rather strange that the self-proclaimed "land of the free" should be the outlier here). This situation leads to there being many political sources produced in the US rather than just the medical sources that are produced elsewhere, so most of the readily available sources about such topics are American. Phil Bridger (talk) 22:26, 21 January 2019 (UTC)
That's not true, Ireland was pro-life less than a year ago and I know about a lot of latin-american countries that are still pro-life. I agree that this article is too focused on US politics, also many of the sources doesn't look neutral (the ones that are from organizations specially dedicated to advocate for abortion). --2603:3024:18F0:B800:4894:3FB6:E5C7:2CE9 (talk) 08:16, 24 May 2019 (UTC)

changes to article[edit]

I suggest changing the first sentences to the following: "Scientific and medical expert bodies have repeatedly concluded that induced abortion poses no greater mental-health risks than carrying unwanted pregnancies to term.[3][4][5] Nevertheless, the relationship between induced abortion and mental health is an area of political controversy."

Also the following should be changed:

"The U.K. Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists likewise summarized the evidence by finding that abortion did not increase the risk of mental-health problems relative to women carrying an unwanted pregnancy to term."

"The correlations observed in some studies may be explained by pre-existing social circumstances and emotional or mental health.[3][16] Various factors, such as emotional attachment to the pregnancy, lack of support, and conservative views on abortion may increase the likelihood of experiencing negative emotions."

Get rid of sentence that reads: However, negative mental health impacts can result from any pregnancy outcome. Reason: It is out of place here and not true. Mental health problems may occur after any pregnancy outcome but that doesn't mean they are the result of (i.e., caused by) the pregnancy outcome. Also, the topic here is abortion and mental health not any pregnancy outcome. So, I am not sure why the article is shifting to negative mental health impacts that result from any pregnancy outcome. Negative mental health is also a poor use of worlds. There is a term for depression after pregnancy -- postpartum depression -- or more serious mental health problems such as postpartum psychosis according the DSMs. The event occurs after birth but we cannot be certain it is caused by birth (though it likely is).

Among those women who do experience mental health issues following an abortion... - add 'an abortion' after following.

"Anti-abortion crisis pregnancy centers and religious groups offer counseling[1]" should be deleted. They do not offer counseling. See this article (there are more pieces too).

A.G. Bryant, S. Narasimhan, K. Bryant-Comstock, E.E. Levi Crisis pregnancy center websites: information, misinformation and disinformation Contraception, 90 (2014), pp. 601-605, 10.1016/j.contraception.2014.07.003

Noit821 (talk) 02:49, 7 August 2019 (UTC)noit821


Imbalance of article is potentially harmful[edit]

There article lacks sufficient emphasis on the fact that all the expert bodies agree that some women do have negative mental health problems following abortion. The APA report specifically lists a number of risk factors that predict higher incidence rates of mental illness. (I've added these to the lead.) The APA also states: "[I]t is clear that some women do experience sadness, grief, and feelings of loss following termination of a pregnancy, and some experience clinically significant disorders, including depression and anxiety," but this is not stated in the lead, where it belongs!

I realize that most editors are focused on the big public health perspective, which is what most of the cited reviews are referencing, stating as a conclusion, in essence that abortion does have mental health problems associated with it, but so does carrying a pregnancy to term. BOTH are problematic. For individual women these risks may vary (look at the list of risk factors). But when you look at studies that average all of these findings together, on AVERAGE it does not appear that abortion is a bigger problem than unwanted pregnancies.

Okay. That's a consensus view about the average public health risk of abortion versus unplanned pregnancies. But the consensus is also that for many individual women, abortion does pose mental health risks and these women deserve good counseling.

But think about a woman who is having problems who comes to read this article. Is she seeing any compassion for the fact that she believes her abortion is contributing to her mental health issues? No, she's seeing a one-sided article that focuses on the lack of a significant public health risk difference between abortion and delivery of unplanned pregnancies that is framed in a way that implies that there are NO mental health effects associated with abortion and therefore she is "crazy" to attribute her feelings of grief and loss to her abortion, because the "experts all agree there are no mental health effects from abortion" (the last quote not being literal, but rather the tone of this article.)

This article needs to reflect the difference between the statements" "The mental health risks of a single abortion for an adult woman with no pre-existing risk factors is similar to the mental health risks associated with carrying an unplanned pregnancy to term," and the acknowledgement that "Some women do have clinically significant mental health problems related to their abortions, just as many do with regard to facing the burdens of an unwanted pregnancy."

Let's find a way to acknowledge both the fact that it abortion is associated with mental illnesses and the fact that, from a public health perspective, these risks appear to be on the same order as that of carrying unwanted pregnancies to term.Saranoon (talk) 14:57, 2 October 2019 (UTC)

"Is she seeing any compassion for the fact that she believes her abortion is contributing to her mental health issues?" Is John Q. Public seeing any compassion for the fact that he believes that vaccines cause autism and Hillary Clinton runs a ring of pizza pedophiles? What do you think this encyclopedia is for? Your changes did not address the issues that this comment claims to address. –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 01:39, 3 October 2019 (UTC)
There are many ways to address the problems with this article. Certainly there are more comprehensive solutions that could be accomplished in a major overhaul to improve the balance. I was attempting to show respect for the previous edit of the first sentence in the lead by retaining it in full but adding the additional material that clarifies that "expert bodies" are also actually acknowledging that abortion does involve mental health risks....especially for subgroups of women.
Here is the problem with the lead. Nothing in it clearly states, that some women do experience mental health problems associated with their abortion. The APA report clearly states that...not as a headline, but in the body of the paper. Instead, the whole tone of the article is "we can ignore the medical evidence that there are some cases of mental health problems that are triggered or exasperated by abortion because many medical experts believe that there are just as many mental health risks associated with carrying an unintended pregnancy to term." But as soon as you do a comparison like that, you are talking about a public health issue...like the risk of death is greater from driving than from flying. The latter fact doesn't mean that flying is perfectly safe and should not be the lead on an article regarding aviation safety issues, much less the predominate theme for dismissing aviation safety issues altogether.
In fact, in this comparison, [Fergusson's 2013] review shows that the few studies that do directly compare mental health risks of abortion to carrying unintended pregnancies to term indicate there are greater risks associated with abortion. Even though this review was published after the APA and NCCMH reviews, these findings are not properly reflected in the article. Saranoon (talk) 14:06, 3 October 2019 (UTC)
I don't see why you repeat the same arguments every couple of months hoping for different results. Our most fundamental responsibility is to provide the reader with accurate medical information. People can develop mental-health issues after any major life event. Medical evidence indicates that if a woman has an unplanned pregnancy, then abortion is no more likely to cause mental-health issues than carrying the pregnancy to term. Our article states this correctly. Your edits have consistently sought to obscure these facts, and to imply, falsely, that abortion is inherently riskier from a mental-health perspective. Given the proliferation of politically-motivated falsehoods about abortion, our responsibility to provide accurate and non-misleading information is particularly relevant here. MastCell Talk 16:26, 3 October 2019 (UTC)
Saranoon, I think you are mischaracterizing the tone of the article in an attempt to make your point. Restating Fergusson over and over does not cancel out the overwhelming body of evidence on this topic. Your edits were more inflammatory than you are claiming. SeeJaneEdit (talk) 21:05, 3 October 2019 (UTC)
I would remind the above editors that they should follow the wise policy of recognizing and assuming good faith WP:AGF regarding my edits. My edits are indisputably based on reliable secondary sources. I understand that the objections are about weight. So let me simply ask, "Where in the lead is due weight given to the fact that, numerous sources, including the APA review, state that some women do have clinically significant mental health issues related to their abortions?" If you don't like the way I try to word it, please offer your own edit suggestions which give due weight to Fergusson's review and the APA's own statements regarding the fact that some minority of women do have significant problems. Saranoon (talk) 21:59, 3 October 2019 (UTC)

Unbalanced and Potentially Misleading Lead/Introduction[edit]

Instead of presenting the information plainly and clearly, this lead seems to introduce controversy and opinions on the topic within only the first two sentences. I believe this could be greatly improved by editing the beginning sentences to objectively and plainly state the subject of the article as to give readers a clear look into the topic without presenting any discussion. As you read further through the lead, you read statement after statement that the writer presents to support the idea that abortion has no more effect on mental health than does carrying an unwanted pregnancy to term. For this reason, I believe this could be perceived as presenting strong bias towards this side of the argument. Following this long first paragraph, there is a second, much smaller paragraph included in this lead that briefly and seemingly dismissably introduces the opposing side to this argument, claiming that there is no evidence to support these opposing claims. This lead seems to espouse personal bias rather than objectively and plainly state the subject while simply introducing the discussion. A simple read through and deletion of opinion statements as well as the addition of information/evidence to support the opposing argument would do the article well.

Adamhampton99 (talk) 01:22, 26 January 2020 (UTC)

Please read WP:DUE. We do not give equal validity to all claims and positions. Instead, we present them in the context and with the prominence that reliable sources do. Reliable sources overwhelmingly support the position that abortion does not have more negative effects than carrying pregnancy to term. That means we will present that position with greater prominence. What you are complaining about is actually a feature, not a bug, of this encyclopedia. NorthBySouthBaranof (talk) 02:52, 26 January 2020 (UTC)
I note specifically that the lede cites three separate major medical science organizations - the National Academy of Sciences, the American Psychological Association, and the National Collaborating Centre for Mental Health. Which medical sources do you have to dispute the findings and conclusions of these organizations? NorthBySouthBaranof (talk) 03:13, 26 January 2020 (UTC)
I agree with Adamhampton99. There is a distinct lack of balance and a failure to give WP:DUE to numerous studies and reviews, such as the review by Fergusson, previously discussed. There is also a cherry picking of concepts in the lede, and body of the text, which ignore the fact that the 2008 APA report, upon which all the other reviews rely so heavily, states quite clearly that SOME women do have negative mental health problems, especially those who fall into a long list of high risk categories, which may well include the majority of women having abortions.
Adamhampton99, I would encourage you to propose how you would edit the lead here for discussion. Saranoon (talk) 23:11, 27 January 2020 (UTC)
I agree with NorthBySouthBaranof. Wikipedia follows reliable sources. We're saying what the National Academy of Sciences, the American Psychological Association, and the National Collaborating Centre for Mental Health say. That's the right thing to do. Bondegezou (talk) 10:00, 28 January 2020 (UTC)
The reason the article is primarily framed through the lens of controversy is because of the persistent politically-motivated myth that abortion causes mental health problems. Our article handles the situation correctly in noting that no such relationship exists, according to medical bodies. –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 21:53, 29 January 2020 (UTC)
Indeed. I suggest reading the talk page archives where this has been discussed frequently. While political debates exist about the topic, the science is what the article should reflect. —PaleoNeonate – 18:33, 30 January 2020 (UTC)