by April (Ontario)
I grew up in a very open and excepting family when it comes to getting pregnant. I always knew though that abortion would not be accepted so I chose not to share it with my parents. I did tell my younger sister who was extremely supportive and took very good care of me after the process. I found out I was six weeks pregnant two months before my 26th birthday. I had an abortion exactly one week ago. I was in a very unstable relationship that was practically falling apart. We had attempted to work on our relationship prior to finding out we were pregnant but after the news it all started to fall to pieces. I knew in those moments I would have an abortion. I was unemployed with no savings and did not want to bring a baby into a life of turmoil. I made an appointment then told my boyfriend I would have an abortion. Although he disagreed with my decision I knew having the baby would make life even harder. I would be stuck with my boyfriend in an unhealthy relationship I was trying desperately to leave.
The procedure was short and the staff at the clinic was amazing. They made the process so much easier for me. I met with a counselor, had an ultrasound and then was taken into a room for my surgical abortion. Although I felt a bit of pain it was a short procedure that saved me alot of months and years of heartache. Now I’m enrolling into a graduate program with hopes to become a social worker.
This decision empowered me in so many ways and practically changed my attitude and outlook on life. I’ve decided to turn my life around for the better. Although I’ve felt some sadness I have not felt regret. This was the right decision for this time in my life.
I think it’s normal to feel bits of sadness due to the hormonal changes. Don’t beat yourself up. Believe in yourself and your decision. It’s your life to live in whatever way you choose. This idea alone was very empowering to me. Looking forward to a great and meaningful future!
by Judy (Europe)
I was in an abusive relationships with a psychopath for nearly two years. I broke up with him after two weeks and told him he wasn’t the kind of man I was looking for. I had my own apartment, small business, savings, and car; he was 35 living with his mother going to pubs everyday with no intentions of moving out. Instead of saying “okay”, or anything offensive and just accepting my decision, he made it very clear that he will not let go of me at all. For most of the time I stayed with him because he knew where I lived, he would show up, ringing my doorbell like crazy, talked to my neighbors behind my back, kept stalking my friends and relatives so I slowly stopped talking to anyone. He not once raised his hand at me when I told him to get out. He called the police claiming I overdosed myself with medications, he stole my keys and locked me inside my own apartment. The only reason why I stayed because I had a beautifully established life and I did not want to believe that I would have to give it all up.
I had to and I had to start all over at the other side of the world. I fell pregnant twice while being on the pill. I laughed bitterly at what parasitic genes he had. Well guess what. I had his spawns aborted like no tomorrow. Both of them. Most time our sex life was unconsented, practically rape. I felt incredible satisfaction both times I aborted his kids. Abortion has SAVED MY LIFE, saved me from committing suicide or murder or both, losing all my money and the chance for a normal life. Thank you Marie Stopes Institutes. I owe you my new, peaceful, happy life. Scarred and shattered but I have moved on, I’m smiling, I’m working, I’m successful. With a parasitic psychopath by my side, I don’t want to imagine what family life I would have had.
Thank you abortion. You have saved my life – twice. You have made me stronger, I never knew I had so much strength and confidence and I could take my life in my hands.
by Maria (New Jersey)
Growing up, I never had any desire to have children. As I got older, my stance had solidified. The group of girls I was friends with in middle school once joked about who would thought would end up pregnant in high school.
I was not the one they guessed.
It was my senior year in high school. I was a dating a guy who was fun, but not a long term fixture- even at that point. It had been about seven months into our relationship, and we were dumb and skipped a condom. I remember thinking how odd it was I didn’t have my period, but I still got cramps. After the at-home pregnancy test that I took in his Mom’s bathroom came out positive, I showed it to him and told him, “I’m pregnant and you’re paying for my abortion.” I had never had any doubts; it was 2 weeks before my senior prom, I hadn’t made college plans (outside of community college), and I knew then I wanted my life to be my own. I think it may have been the last time I actually used a phone book. I made the appointment, and at the time, only my boyfriend and my friend knew. They both went with me, and I remember asking the nurse why they had a poster on the ceiling over the chair. She said some people get… emotional. I had no sedation, it was an extra $100, and the boyfriend couldn’t swing the cash. It was only a few minutes, but it was the most painful thing of my life.
I remember being very upset about it the rest of the day- like my true innocence had been taken. This was a week before prom.
As time went by, I felt better and better about it. The sex with my boyfriend wasn’t the same, and we eventually broke up. It’s ten years later, and now he has two kids.
I have none, and I am perfectly happy. I still have no desire to have children, and my parents know, too. I told my dad at the breakfast table over coffee a few years later, talking about his stepdaughter who was pregnant with no father in the picture, no full time job, and nowhere to go but back home. He said, “If you ever need one, just ask. That’s when I told him. He was supportive and told me it was the right decision.
And he was right- it was the best decision I have ever made.
By Kate (Nebraska)
I found out I was pregnant on April 24, 2010; I was so shocked thinking, “oh it can’t happen to me.” My boyfriend at the time and I had talked about kids but I didn’t really think it would happen so soon. We had only been together for 5 months and in there we took a short break. When I found out I was pregnant we had only been back together almost 2 months. He is very against abortion and that is the reason we’re not together anymore. Well, that and he cheated on me our whole relationship. He was out of town when I took the test at my friend’s house. I told him I was taking the test and it didn’t even take the full 3 minutes for the test to turn positive. I let him know the results and he was so excited. He wanted a baby so badly. But he didn’t have a job and hadn’t had one the whole 5 months we were together. I was the only one working; he on the other hand was managing to live off of 120 some dollars of unemployment a week. We decided to tell my mom on April 25 and the first thing she said to me is “you know you can’t afford a baby right now.” I knew that for some reason he didn’t think it was going to be a problem. I am completely against raising a baby with all state help. We went to a park and talked to my mom in her vehicle, she asked him what his thoughts were and all he could say is “I’m completely against abortion; I think it is disgusting and a bad thing to do.” He ended up getting out of the vehicle and I talked to my mom some more and I cried a lot. But I knew that I couldn’t raise a baby. I could hardly afford to pay for my own self. She told me that the choice is up to me, I can’t let the fact he is completely against abortion change my decision. So I made the decision that was best for me and my life, even though it meant I was going to lose him completely.
I called Planned Parenthood on that Monday and made my appointment for May 4th. The day of the appointment came and my mom drove me there, as we pulled into the parking lot there was a lot of protesters there all I remember hearing is “you don’t have to do this, there are other options” all I thought to myself was “no this is the option that is right for me.” When we got into the clinic I filled out all of my paperwork and then waited. Finally they called my name and I went and had my ultrasound, they did an internal one where they stick the thing inside of you because according to when I thought my last period was means I wouldn’t be very far along. The lady asked me if I wanted to see the screen and also if I wanted to know if there was multiples and I answered yes to both. When I saw the screen and there was barely even a little speck in there I knew it was all going to be okay. She said it was all mainly just a yolk sack and that I was 43 days pregnant. Then they did some blood tests and sent me back to the waiting room. About 30 minutes later they called my name and took me into the room and a lady talked to me to make sure I knew what was going to happen (as if I didn’t spend hours upon hours researching this) and that I wasn’t being forced into having an abortion. She also told me all the instructions about the pill and pills I would be taking and gave me birth control to start. Then the doctor came in and gave me the first pill, mifepristone. And he then gave me a bottle with the 4 pills that I could take within 72 hours of taking the first pill. I also got a prescription for hydrocodone and got some ibuprofen to make the cramping hurt less.
I decided to take the next 4 pills the next day at 12:30pm. The pills are misoprostol and you put 2 on each side of your mouth and let them dissolve over a 30 minute period. By 1:30 I was already cramping and started bleeding. It hurt really badly but with the pain medicine it was bearable. I bled a lot for the next 2 days, but then it started to slow down. I even got to be a bridesmaid in my sister’s wedding on May 8th. I don’t regret my decision to have an abortion, even though it meant losing my boyfriend. I think that if I was far enough along that I couldn’t have had a medication abortion that I wouldn’t have had an abortion but knowing that I was just over a month pregnant I was okay with it. Having the medication abortion is more like having a miscarriage, which might be why I’m okay with it. I haven’t cried about what if since I had the abortion and so many people from the town I live in are making this a huge deal calling me heartless and selfish but I know what is best for me. I don’t regret having an abortion.
by Jessica (Pennsylvania)
I was in Puerto Rico feeling horrible, I thought it was a local stomach flu and that the travel was the cause of my period being a few days late. However after a few more days I still wasnt better, I took a pregnancy test because the doctors office wanted to rule it out before they pumped me full of antibiotics to treat the presumed travel bug. When it came back positive I was shocked.
I had been on some form of hormonal birth control for almost 10 years without issue. But then I recalled that I had gone on antibiotics during one of my cycles 2 months earlier. The doctor said that the low dose birth control I was on are more susceptible to changes in chemistry. My boyfriend turned white when I told him and hugged me. I said I am having a termination and he squeezed me harder. I was in the middle of grad school and couldn’t imagine juggling school a new career and a pregnancy/baby.
Some might consider us selfish as we are fairly stable individuals with great career potential and we are in our late 20’s. As it is many of our friends were starting to have children willfully. Yet we weren’t there, we were living in different states as I was in grad school and he had remained at his job. He accepted the decision and committed to supporting me throughout the process. The next day I found a clinic and scheduled the appointment. My termination would be at around 7 weeks.
The clinic was great at explaining the process ensuring that I had full understanding and expectation and even warned against the possibility of protestors. Luckily, they were minimal and my large boyfriend made for a great shield. The day of the procedure I elected for a little Valium and a surgical procedure. The procedure proved to be minimally painful, it was easier than a cervical biopsy I had previously. I had a little cramping directly after a minimal bleeding. The staff was great about giving my a hot water bottle after to sooth the cramps and some cookies and juice and then sat and joked with me about the ridiculous fashion magazines. They were good about keeping my anxious boyfriend in the loop about what was happening to me. One day he will be a great father his protective instincts run very high, but he too knew he isnt ready yet.
2 days after the procedure I went skiing, I continued to have some intermittent cramping and bleeding but nothing unmanageable through some ibuprofen. All in all I thought all the panic talk that I had read online was overstated. Maybe for people not committed to their decision or who are making the decision in the face of trauma experience a larger sense of loss or hopelessness. For me its been over 6 months and I have yet to have regret or a have a sense of loss. I look forward instead to having a child on my terms when we are both ready. I have felt nothing but gratitude toward my boyfriend for his support and to the ladies at the clinic for their openness and willingness to see me as a person not just a procedure. In my state you may elect to donate the tissue to science, I choose to do so and feel like a positive aspect of the procedure is that someone may learn something from my decision.