I can barely write this as it makes me face the truth about my past
I can barely write my story as it makes me face the truth about my past and the children I will never get to know. I do know that the pain eats away at me every single day.
I am a 35-year-old married woman with one daughter. I think of myself as a nice, intelligent person with a lot to offer. However, I have had 3 abortions. It makes me cry just to write it. How could I be so irresponsible? How could I have let this happen?
The first one was when I was 17. I had been seeing an older guy who was very intimidating and I felt totally under his control. We were using the withdrawal method and of course, I quickly got pregnant. I could not tell my Mum (she had guessed) and I felt so ashamed to be another teenage pregnancy statistic.
A friend urged me to keep the baby as she had been through a similar situation but I couldn't cope with the thought of a child at such a young age. I had a surgical abortion at 9 weeks. I felt great upset but also a huge relief.
I cancelled the abortion
I next got pregnant at 23 with a man that I loved. Again, I felt panic at how I would cope and got an appointment for another abortion. However, something stopped me and I had a beautiful daughter. The best decision I ever made was to cancel that appointment.
I married my boyfriend when my daughter was a baby and we were happy at first...
He had many issues that I didn't realise and the fact we had a baby so quickly put a strain on us as a couple. He became abusive and this got worse as time went on.
I felt so confused and lonely that I developed Bulimia as a result of stress (I had suffered from Anorexia in my early twenties as well). I had no confidence and wouldn't go out or see friends. At the time this behaviour seemed 'normal' to me. I kept all my feelings to myself.
I then fell pregnant at the age of 31. I didn't tell my husband. I felt so sick and wanted the baby aborted. I went to a private clinic at 6 weeks and felt numb. I buried my feelings and carried on with life.
My world had become chaotic, my marriage was a disaster and I took solace in other men, drink and Bulimia. I got into trouble with the Police and had to go to court.
An abortion at 8 weeks
At the age of 34, I was pregnant again. This time with a man younger than me who could not cope with fatherhood. My husband knew about the affair and urged me to have an abortion.
I felt a strong bond with my baby and wanted to keep it. I then began to panic as I had done with all my pregnancies, worrying about money, being on my own etc. I couldn't talk to anyone. So I decided I was being selfish for wanting this child and again had an abortion at 8 weeks.
That day was the worst of my life. I remember sitting in the hospital with other women in the same situation thinking 'I can just get up at any moment and leave'. I watched the clock tick by until it was my turn. Afterwards, I was distraught and immediately wanted to 'replace' my baby. I desperately tried to get pregnant again only two weeks after.
I have been unable to conceive again and have an ovarian cyst
This is all my fault. I have abused my body and may never have another child. I feel so guilty that my daughter has no brothers or sisters. I am traumatised and have thought about suicide. I cannot eat or sleep and have lost 2 and a half stone in weight. I feel that I should be punished by not being able to have a baby although I desperately want one.
Abortion has ruined my life.
Thank you for reading this.
This story was sent in on 05/05/2010