I had a gut instinct but because I was in my first year at uni, I felt like I would be disappointing my parents

I knew I was pregnant because I was sleeping all the time and I couldn't control it, my period was late and I kept having mood swings. I had a gut instinct but because I was in my first year at uni, I felt like I would be disappointing my parents and things were not great with my boyfriend so I felt like I had no choice...but then again I hated the idea of an abortion. So I just kept ignoring it, thinking if I did I wouldn't jinx myself or that it might go away. It didn't. Finally I decided to confide in my best friend and after some time of trying to persuade me I took a Home Pregnancy Test which came out positive. At first I was in shock.. I didn't believe of all people it was happening to me. When I came out the loo, out of nervousness I burst into laughter and my friends were relieved. But then I went really quiet and it wasnt until about 10 mins later when I started to cry that they asked me what the problem was. I went home and I started to bleed heavily with huge blood clots, my sheets were soaked. I panicked because I was losing my baby but then I was also relieved because it was happening naturally so I wouldn't have to think about an abortion. I knew that I couldn't have this baby with all that was going on around me, but I was also against abortion. I decided to go to the hospital anyway to be on the safe side and after keeping me in overnight they had established the baby was ok, but I had a huge blood clot almost surrounding it and so I was treated for this. My problem was still there. I told my boyfriend everything and at first he was happy, but then started distancing himself even though he wanted me to keep the baby. Eventually I confided in an aunty who promised to be there for me whatever I decided, but when I decided I wanted an abortion she told the whole family. Everyone was drowning me in advice 'keep it or you'll regret it' some would say, whilst others were insistant 'you have your whole life ahead of you, you dont want to ruin it now, you're a smart girl you know what to do'. The main person whose view I valued was my mother and she was convinced keeping the baby wasn't the right thing and that if I had an abortion she would support me, but if I decided to keep it she wouldn't. I knew I wanted to keep my baby but everyone and everything was engulfing me and I wanted it all to stop, so I did it. Lost in people's voices I had an abortion a few days short of 16 weeks and I regret it. Over the time I've learnt to try and see the benefits it brought but deep down I wish I didn't. I see children and I'm flooded with joy but I'm also fighting back the tears and warring with my thoughts. I feel like I've lost a part of me. That part of me is empty now and can never be filled. I feel guilty and upset all the time. It wasn't a nice thing to go through and I couldn't go through it again. At times I feel like taking my life to punish myself for what I did and hopefully my baby won't be angry with me. It might forgive me. Now loads of my friends are having children and I'm reminded all the time. It hurts that I didn't know if it was a girl or a boy and so I have to refer to my first child as it. Now everyone around me has moved on and expects me to do the same but I can't and I'm scared to bring it up so I just keep it to myself. Editor's Comment:- You really struggled with this enormous decision, with your instincts and beliefs about abortion battling against your circumstances, and what everyone was saying to you.It must have been a very hard decision especially with your Mum being so sure about what she felt was right for you. It's hard to know what to do when there are so many voices giving you different advice. You are really suffering now and what you are describing is not uncommon. You may be feeling as though you need to suffer, but please hold on and don't punish yourself for what has happened. I think it would help you to speak to someone independent who can help you to talk through all your thoughts and feelings. There is a post-abortion support programme that would help you. I know it takes a lot of courage to seek help like this, but if you felt unable to ring the helpline you could work with an online counsellor. It is completely confidential and would help you when you are feeling so locked up, and unable to talk to those around you.
This story was sent in on 26/11/2009

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My daughter had an abortion several years ago when she was a teenager.It was the most traumatic time of our life.

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