A response to the 18 year old woman's story

I just wanted to write in response to the 18 year old woman's story who has just experienced a traumatic medical (pill) termination and to also say a little bit about my own experiences. Your experience of medical abortion sounds really awful and I'm really sorry you went through that. I had a termination (surgical) years ago when I was in my early 20's. I was in final year at university and had extreme pregnancy sickness so I didn't really even contemplate keeping the baby but felt extremely guilty and depressed after the termination for quite some time. (The surgical termination itself physically was fine, very little pain afterwards and no problems other than being a bit sick post-anaesthetic.) However, I did eventually get over the experience and was able to forgive myself and so just wanted to say that one day I hope you will too. You are very young and it sounds like it would have been incredibly difficult for you to keep your baby. By the way, I'm very pro-choice and in theory I'm not sure anyone should feel bad for putting their own life ahead of an unborn persons, (nevermind in the difficult position you are in) but totally appreciate that when hormones and emotions are involved it is just not that straightforward. It is very natural to feel the way that you do at the moment and to grieve for your baby. Seeing the baby sounds extremely traumatic; it's irresponsible of medical staff to not make women fully prepared for these factors. It may be worth feeding back to the clinic or hospital and to encourage staff to make sure patients are better informed? I am sure you are one of many that was unaware of this and was very upset by seeing the baby. Probably either decision you would have made would cause you to experience some regrets, it might be helpful to try to accept that if you possibly can and just work through your feelings one day at a time. You could seek counselling for extra help? Please try not to feel so hard on yourself though in the meantime. I went on to have a lovely child in my mid 30's and we are a content family of 3 with no plans to have any further kids. However, I have just discovered that I am pregnant (totally unplanned) and we are not sure we want another. Finances are very difficult and there are lots of other things going on. Plus I have no biological desire for another.
So, I have been looking into medical abortion as it seemed very straightforward and a good option for early pregnancy. However I have found many similar stories to yours regarding the severe pain, the chance of seeing the foetus/baby when everything comes out and feel that this is not explained properly by medical staff. It was not explained to me, I only saw it through reading around online. In fact I did call the clinic back to query this but they suggested I'd been reading pro-life literature which was definitely not the case. - Just ordinary women's stories, such as yours.
I still don't know what we will decide to do but if we do terminate the baby, I will definitely go for the surgical option and not medical because I would also find seeing the foetus extremely traumatic and do not want to experience severe pain when there is a far more pain free alternative option available. It's already an unpleasant enough thing to go through. Wishing you all the best with your recovery and take care.

Editor's Comment

Thanks for replying to another post. I hope it helps to hear other people's experience when you are struggling yourself.
I agree that as a duty of care health professionals should explain the exact procedure and possible symptoms/outcomes. If you are not expecting to see anything formed it is a tremendous shock for many women.
I hope you are able to work through your decision about your pregnancy, and if you would like to talk it through with an advisor please call the helpline or log into Online advisor. for unplanned pregnancy support.
This story was sent in on 14/05/2013 and it's been viewed 343 times.

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