Sadly I had a medical abortion involving the two doses of medication on Friday/Saturday. Whilst I had rationalised the decision to go ahead with this procedure with my partner, I always felt some ambivalence but felt 'how can anyone ever be 100% sure about this?' I was only six weeks. The rationalised reasons were: it was not expected we were both in shock leaving me unable to accept the pregnancy which I found impossible having been excited about two expected pregnancies before, our ages I'm 41 husband 10 years older, had two previous emergency caesarian sections leaving me with a fear of childbirth, have two young school age children who I didn't wish to risk anything for and new I would have to have a third c section, increased risk to health of potential baby and myself because of my age. I felt I was doing the best for my family and did not expect the extreme traumatic reaction I have had. We have had a tough year with bereavement and I did not want to put my partner or family through any more stress of an unwanted pregnancy - ironically we have been catapulted now into a very difficult situation where my mental health for the first time in my life is suffering. I can't stop crying and feel regret for what I did. No relief. Without the pressure I was under to make the decision as quickly as possible (as I had a cut off in my head for when I could continue with the abortion) I can see we could have worked through the above concerns perhaps with time. I actually went at 5 weeks for the pills and broke down so they refused. I had to make it the second time as I felt I could not disappoint and go through the agony I had gone through waiting another week. I think the fact it was a surprise and not planned left us both psychologically unable to cope in effect and could see mostly negatives to continuing the pregnancy. I had always had a desire for a third child but we had agreed not to and my husband was really not keen because of his age. I had let this lie until this happened. Now it has brought that desire to the forefront, not to replace but because I know I could have done it without the pressure on. I actually believe it would be disrespectful to have another child after terminating my pregnancy. Am so struggling and wish I had been offered some kind of counselling before hand to resolve my ambiguity but was not pointed anywhere and did not realise I could access something outside of the clinic. My world has crashed down when I thought I was doing the 'right' thing for my family. I fear the backlash is far worse than it would have been if I had continued the pregnancy. Such regret and so so sorry. Did not expect to go into a full bereavement reaction.
I think that in our modern world we have so much control over our family planning, that as you say an unintended pregnancy can be a real shock, and difficult to change your thinking and lives to accommodate such a life changing event.
Having said that, there is nothing that prepares you for emotional and psychological effects of termination of pregnancy either. As you say you are grieving your loss and nothing can turn the clock back to your life before this pregnancy.
I am so sorry that you were not able to access independent counselling to help you think through your decision fully. It has been a government recommendation that every woman is offered independent counselling, but unfortunately not compulsory to offer it yet.
There is post abortion help and support available, and although at the moment you may feel too raw to talk about your experience, please consider this as I think it may help you to process some of your painful feelings. You can call the national helpline for more information 0300 4000 999, or log onto Online advisor for post abortion support.