I had a surgical abortion yesterday.
I had a surgical abortion yesterday. I was around ten weeks pregnant and I’m 16 years old, feeling the need to write about my experience in some way.
I found out I was pregnant on the 14th November 2008 after suspecting it for a few weeks due to missed period. I had two negative pregnancy tests but a blood test confirmed it. My boyfriend was, and still is, supportive of me and the same with my mum. Telling my mum was the hardest thing I think I’ll ever have to do, but having her support made the whole thing a lot easier. At first I was confused and unsure of what I wanted to do but I knew I really only had two options; continue with the pregnancy or have an abortion. I really did come round to idea of having a baby, coping and continuing with my education, but appointments were made and dates set and it happened so quickly. A few of my friends knew about what was going on and the majority helped me along the way.
I had a scan which was very difficult and the date for the abortion was set. The time leading up to the termination was extremely difficult as all sorts of things were running through my head and I kept changing my mind about what I wanted to do but I realised I had to follow my head and not my heart. I’m a bright girl with big dreams and aspirations ahead of me: a future of university and travelling and endless opportunities to make my life successful. On Tuesday the 9th of December I had to attend the hospital to take a tablet by mouth which ended the pregnancy. This was an emotional and difficult experience and once I took the tablet I knew there was no going back.
The night at home after I had taken the tablet I kept thinking about what was going on inside of me and I struggled. I cried a lot. The next day I arrived at the hospital at 8am. I was trying to hold back the tears as I didn’t want my mum to think I wasn’t strong enough to go cope with it all. It was so hard to feel the lump in my throat and eventually I let it all out whilst waiting for my turn to go to theatre.
The nurse gave me two tablets which open the cervix and I remember looking down onto the bed and seeing a lot of bright red blood. It was heartbreaking but I just kept thinking I was doing the right thing. Before long I was wheeled down to the theatre and given the anaesthetic. I was really emotional and I remember looking into one of the nurse’s eyes and she looked back at me with a tear in her eye. It was scary and I felt so intimidated and ashamed.
When I came round my initial reaction was again more tears but pain started to kick in which brought with it the realization it was all over. I felt completely different. A few hours later, I left the hospital and returned home. Since then I have been coping ok.
It’s hard to think about what I did but I know deep in my heart I did the right thing. I hope to one day be able to bring a baby into the world and be able to provide it with everything I can and make sure its childhood is beyond perfect. I had a messy childhood myself and know first-hand how much it can affect you. It breaks my heart to think that I could have been a mum and I let that chance go. It’s horrible to think about women who can't have babies but one day I will be a brilliant mum. The time was just not right. I feel selfish and ashamed sometimes but I’m trying to stay as positive as I can and try and move on, although I know this will always be a part of me and I will remember this time for the rest of my life.
To anyone that is reading this and has had an abortion or is considering one, to follow your heart is one of the truest things you can ever do, but sometimes you have to listen to your head to be able to make a decision that is for you. I know some days will be difficult and I’ll have feelings of regret but I find comfort in the thought that my baby has gone to a better place, a place of peace and happiness where it can stay for a while before its spirit returns when I become pregnant again - when I’m ready. My thoughts are with you all; this is the hardest thing a woman could ever have to do. Never forget it and never forget how brave you are.
Editor’s note: Thanks for sharing your story with us…You seem to have been in two minds about the abortion, feeling it was necessary and logical in terms of your circumstances, but feeling the pain and loss of the pregnancy at a deeper heart level. You are really trying very hard to find some comfort in your pain, aren’t you?
I sense that you have a need to make up for what has happened by wanting to make sure that how you live your life and how you bring up children in the future will be ‘beyond perfect’. You may find yourself desperately trying to make everything perfect in the future when this is really an impossible goal for anyone to achieve. It doesn’t sound as if you are completely at peace with yourself about your abortion. If you continue to find that you are struggling to be at peace, then do take advantage of being able to visit a centre and talk it through. Every centre offers the opportunity to be assessed for post-abortion stress using a questionnaire, so that you can see for yourself how well you are coping. You might find that helpful at some point. If so, we’d love to help. We’ll be thinking of you.
This story was sent in on 23/12/2008
I knew I was pregnant the instant I conceived - 25th April 2008.