Date of Award

January 2023

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Heather K. Terrell


Enacted stigma consists of active discrimination or negative treatment towards an individual who has received an abortion. Further, stereotypes of individuals typically fit within perceptions of competence and warmth, however these stereotypes have not been measured about women who have received an abortion despite the fact that they can indicate stigmatizing beliefs. Additionally, enacted stigma may present differently between men and women. The purpose of the current study was to measure perceptions of competence and warmth as a form of stigma about women with and without a history of abortion, as well as women who considered an abortion but did not receive one. Differences in ratings of competence and warmth among men and women were also measured. The results of the current study indicate that women who have received an abortion are stigmatized via significantly lower ratings of warmth. Further, compared to women, men indicate significantly lower ratings of warmth towards all women. These results suggest that abortion stigma is persistent and that gender differences in enacted stigma exist. Implications and directions for future research are also discussed.