I am 40 and my son is a year old

I wanted to share my story as I spent three weeks reading the other women's experiences and found it an amazing help. I also had invaluable counselling at our local care confidential centre and after that decided to tell my mum and three close friends one of whom had previously had two terminations.
I am 40, my son is one and my partner and I had been having a tough time as a couple, arguing a lot, but had been going to Relate to hopefully work through it. His business was struggling and I was just starting to find my feet again working freelance at my old job.

We decided to keep the baby

When I found out I was pregnant, we couldn't believe it, we thought we had been so careful. After a few emotional days, we decided to keep the baby. However I started to feel panic and stressed - what if things got worse between us? My partner had not been a huge support to me with our first child and although he was getting a lot better it was still a worry. He was feeling overwhelmed with money pressures and this would mean that I would be giving up work again. Neither of us wanted another baby yet both felt so sad. We love our son so much- wouldn't he rather have a brother or sister? There are arguments both ways.

We decided to go for a termination

After a lot of talking (and some arguing) we both decided to go for a termination. The first doctors appointment was awful-it took 3 days to get it and then he said he was a locum and could not refer me. He was very unsupportive. Reception then said it would be 3 weeks before a resident doctor could see me. My partner rang them later so he could explain and got an appointment that afternoon. This doctor was great. Our local hospital only offer surgical terminations, however I could have had a medical one if I drove 60 miles to the nearest BPAS centre. I decided driving that distance 3 times would be too much. Our hospital took another two weeks to get me in for a consultation (blood tests, talks, weight, blood pressure checks and a dating scan).

The scan was the scariest

both my partner and I remembered how wonderful it was to see my son at my 13 week scan- but we both chose to look and both felt quite calm and unattached. It helped that I was only 7 weeks. The operation was booked then for later that week I went in at 10am after not having eaten since 7am, this felt awful as I had suffered bad pregnancy sickness. My partner left me there after half an hour; neither of us were much company, he was scared of operations and I was sick and tired, both of us were nervous and I was having last minute doubts. My mum had given me invaluable words of wisdom a couple of weeks back-'DONT MAKE YOURSELF WRONG' (whatever your decision) I had made my decision so I filled my time there positive thoughts about my partner and son and reminded myself of all my reasons for going ahead with the termination. I had brought my favourite magazines which helped too.
The nurses were lovely and I was given a vaginal tablet about 11am which softened the cervix. This felt like period pain and I started to bleed. Two hours later the anaesthetist and the surgeon came round for chats and then I was wheeled off to theatre to be given general anaesthetic. I was under for about half an hour, but I also had a coil fitted. I had a slight tummy ache that evening and have bled slightly for the last week. The worst part was the sore throat from the tube used while I was under.
Before I had the termination I was terrified I would react badly and be overwhelmed with guilt. I knew we would get by and manage with another child so how could I be so selfish as to choose my 'comfort' above this? However I also knew in my heart that this was not what I wanted. It's been a week now and I'm glad I did so much soul searching and crying before the termination, but it was definitely the right decision for me and my family. Don't beat yourself up, trust what you really want, talk to as many people as you can and know that you can cope whichever choice you make.

Editor's Comment

I am glad you found the web site stories helpful as well as the counselling you received at a local centre. It sounds as though it was quite a journey as you chose one thing and then changed your minds, but you thought it all through carefully and tried to get as much help and support from your family and friends as possible.
I am sure you know that you can get any further support, if you need it, from your local centre.
This story was sent in on 16/03/2010 and it's been viewed 930 times.

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