"I want to share my abortion story because I want to give comfort and peace of mind to those out there who are scared about abortion with no one to talk about it. I feel the need to tell my story for those who are searching for answers, options, and have an idea of what to expect. I will start by saying I do not regret my abortion. I actually felt more relieved knowing I was no longer pregnant at a time I did not need to be. It is kind of long, but I want to share a detailed, true story that others can see if not just a sugar coated story. My story starts like this...
I am a first year graduate student trying to figure out my life and make sure I am doing everything I can to better my life for the future. I was a four year college track and field athlete, graduated top of my class, volunteered much of my time at the church and was just overall very active in may things. I come from a religious background my whole life. It was pretty much a life I am very happy about. I felt nothing could go wrong, or at least if it did, I could handle it right away.
Then, reality hit... I was in the middle of moving into to my new place during the middle of the semester. I was so stressed with what was going on in my life at the time. I have been on birth control since I was 15 never missing a month hardly. I originally got on the pill to help regulate my acne, then used it as I became sexually active later in my life. This month, I had just got my first "big girl" job in the field. The problem with this job was they offered no insurance… I immediately lost all my benefits, (like birth control) that I had got through my insurance.
I contacted my doctor to refill my pills THREE times... I offered to pay out of pocket and do whatever I needed to get them. I never got a response from the doctor… I ended up not getting the pills that month because I tried to get them for almost three weeks it was almost time for my period. I had it that month while I was moving. I have been dating a guy for 4 years who was moving with me. We decided to be extra careful since we both knew I did not have the pills. We used condoms and played it safe, so we thought... I knew within about 3 weeks something was off with me. I was in denial like no I am fine, I just feel a bit off... I was so wrong. My time for my next period rolled around and nothing happened...I am always so regular I start on the dot almost every 25 days. I definitely knew then... something wasn't right…
My boyfriend suggested we get a pregnancy test to calm my fears, but I feared the worst was about to happen. I am 23 years old and I had never taken a pregnancy test before. I was nervous, embarrassed, and just plain scared. He actually took it with me (he is a light-hearted guy who was trying to make me feel better). His immediately popped up negative as he laughed trying to lighten the situation, then it was my turn. Shaking, I peed in a cup and dipped in the stick right after for 5 seconds. I put it down and walked away. I could not bare waiting to see the result. I was absolutely terrified…
I am in grad school, working 2 jobs, planning an internship in less than a year out of country, not financially stable, and a list of other things why I was not ready to have a kid. I made him go get the pregnancy test and see the results. I wished for a negative, but something inside told me I was not going to get the favored response. He looked at the test and sure enough...positive... I was devastated...I began crying hysterically. I was not ready... I just can't be ready. What do I do? Who can I tell? What is the next step?
He was so supportive and told me we will make it no matter what we did. I knew right away I did not want to keep it. I absolutely love my boyfriend and we plan to get married when we are both out of college, but a baby was just not in time for us right now…
I live in Oklahoma... a highly anti-abortion state…nearly ALL of my friends are so against abortion I had no one to talk to. I did not want to tell my mom, no true friends I could trust, I felt alone. Just my boyfriend and I. We were new to this, so I began researching. I read blogs, websites, anything I could find to get answers. I still didn't believe the Walmart brand pregnancy test so I found a free clinic that does pregnancy testing and an ultrasound for free. I scheduled the appointment for a few days after I tested positive.
The day I arrived at the clinic, the staff was friendly and welcoming. This was not an abortion clinic (even though they said they offered guidance if that is the choice via where to obtain the pill). I filled out the paperwork, went back and peed in a cup and waited to be called. What seemed to go very easy then turned into a nightmare for me.
I interviewed with a lady separately asking about my history, relationship to the father, and my religious background. I became kind of confused as to why we got so deep into religion as I just wanted a confirmation if I was pregnant or not. She told me it was standard protocol. As a spiritual person myself I had no issue talking, but found it strange in a situation like this. I then filled out paper work about what my possible choices were for the pregnancy (abortion, adoption, and keeping the child). I was honest and wrote down abortion. Immediately after the staff read my options and why, their faces went from happy to disgruntled. They told me how sad they were that was my only option. They talked to me about 20 minutes about how the bible does not agree with this and how I am going to have to make a choice in my spiritual life to do the right thing.
I felt absolutely attacked. I was told how I'd never be forgiven by God and how awful I would be to do this. I thought this clinic was supposed to make me feel comforted by information rather than attacked. I thought I would never get my results as they went on and on bashing me. They wouldn't even let me see my boyfriend. I felt trapped. Not what I was expecting when their website said they offer the RU-486 pill...
I had an ultrasound to confirm it. I never had an ultrasound either so it was really weird at first. It was so early they could barely find it. I was estimated 3.5 weeks to 5.5 weeks along. I still couldn't believe it. They did not even ask me if I did or did not want to see. All it looked like was a small sac of something. No detail. They still prodded me to consider adoption or keeping it. I asked about the pill and the nurse and ultrasound technician told me that it was too early to tell and could terminate on it's own. She told me how it would cost me a lot of money when I may miscarriage and I'll end up paying $300 or more for no reason. I wanted the pill then since it was so early and I could do something about it. Uneducated about this, I needed answers they would not seem to give. I was then told I could wait two weeks and still have time to get the pill if I decide. My boyfriend and I both believed her.
For two weeks I could barely sleep, I became depressed, I was angry at myself for letting this even happen, so many emotions. The two weeks took what seemed forever. I came back and they were glad to see us they told us (after being completely bashed and told we are basically going to hell). I went through the same procedure and found out this time I was right at 6 weeks... I saw it did not terminate on it's own and told them can we get the pill from them and go about our business.
They were so angry. They told me they did not provide the pill and would not give me any recommendations where to get it. I was so angry. They still protested I go the adoption route. I had saw a doctor about my hernia I have in my umbilical area and was told to continue the pregnancy I had to have surgery otherwise risk internal bleeding and other complications. I definitely did not have money for the surgery, and child, and everything that was going on. I was just very angry I was not informed correctly and they basically lied to me. I hope this uncertainty never happens to anyone out there.
I immediately left and went researching intent on finding the pill. I got in contact with planned parenthood and gave me the number to the doctor. They were so friendly and non-judgmental. I called, but it was too late in the afternoon. I had to wait from Friday until Monday to call and set up an appointment… more...waiting... I was so fed up. I just wanted answers...
Finally Monday came, I called the ONLY abortion clinic in Oklahoma which was luckily 45 minutes or less away from where I lived. They were so nice over the phone. Asked all my information, blood type, last menstrual period and all they needed to set me up for an appointment. I asked about the pill, but I found out they only give it to patients less than six weeks... I was six weeks, three days... I panicked. I never had surgery and the thought of a surgical abortion scared the heck out of me... She assured me the surgery would be easier than the pill experience, but with everyone lying to me I was skeptical. She talked me through what to expect when I get it and that she had one herself. They then scheduled me for that Thursday morning. I couldn't believe that Thursday, I was having a surgical abortion…
The wait began again. I was nervous what to expect. Would it hurt? Would I know what is happening? So many things flooded my mind. I had class at 1:00 that day and the surgery was at 9:00 that morning. I was so nervous I wouldn't make it to the last day of class... I had to be there to pass… Gulp...
That morning I woke up and did not talk much as I was so nervous… My boyfriend drove me to the clinic. It was raining, cooler, and just a gloomy day which made me dread it more... As we got closer, my stomach was in absolute knots... Here we go... I was afraid to have to deal with crazy protesters, but thank goodness to the rain no one wanted to stand outside and yell apparently. I checked in and waited. I saw three other girls, looking about my age and different races, waiting with their boyfriends all nervous as I was. I felt connected to them as we were all here, scared, and on the same journey.
I was called back to get a urine sample and an ultrasound. They were so open and friendly and unlike the other place, I could tell they were sincere. I got a Doppler ultrasound which is where they insert the insert in the vagina. I never had that either. The doctor came and asked me a couple of questions making sure I was the one wanting the abortion and not being forced. I assured them and they sent me out to fill out pre-operative papers. I went back to the waiting room, paid for the abortion up front (you have to pay in full). I filled out everything with hands shaking. I waited for them to come get me, which was less than ten minutes.
I was counseled first about everything that was going to happen next. We talked for 15 minutes, I found out the nurse was the wife of the doctor and she would be there with me through the whole process. My boyfriend or anyone you bring is not allowed back there. So I went in solo. I felt better after she talked to me. I was instructed to remove all clothes except my bra and put on a bright pink hospital gown. The nurses even had me model it down the hall to make me less nervous. I felt they were there for my best interest.
Within minutes, I was on the operating table, no turning back now. The worst part was prepping me for it. I was told I was going to be put completely under which scared me more because I have never had an IV or been put under by general anesthesia. They told me I would be done in 10 minutes or less and awake right after. I was so surprised. They put on a blood pressure cuff, took a finger prick of blood, oxygen monitor, and all the vitals before I went under. His wife said she would be holding my hand the whole time and she would not let anything bad happen.
After strapping my legs in the stirrup things, they were ready to put me under and begin surgery. I was more scared of the anesthesia than anything. (My irrational fear I won't wake up lol). She told me when she sticks it in my arm I would start to feel dizzy then fall asleep. My heart raced. This was it. She stuck it into my arm and I was like I am fine! I got scared as I felt it begin to hit me. The ceiling began swirling down a vortex. Last thing I remember is his wife saying I had such pretty blue eyes. Boom. I was out.
Next thing I remember is the nurses holding my hand saying, wake up, you are done! I felt I had been asleep for several hours. I was so disoriented as I tried to awaken back to normal. I had my watch on still and sure enough it was only 10 minutes later before I checked it when I fell asleep. I felt no pain. I just was having a hard time waking up. They took me to the recovery area and covered me with warm blankets, gave me sprite and two Tylenol for cramps. I fell asleep for two minutes and woke back up. They told me I could sleep as long as I like, but I wanted to process everything that happened.
I felt completely fine, like nothing had happened. I was expecting pain and being scared, but was totally opposite. I texted my boyfriend and he was surprised I was done. The nurses gave me pads to wear and antibiotics to prevent any infection. I got dressed and said thank you and was on my way out. I had to make an appointment for a follow up in two weeks. They were so friendly and I felt I could walk out with my head held high. I headed straight to class like nothing ever happened.
Overall, the experience was great. I thought and was told by the other clinic and people how traumatizing getting an abortion is and how it would be one of the worst experiences of my life, but it was not anything like they said. I felt immediately different. I just knew I wasn't pregnant anymore, I felt my breast tenderness go away like magic, and I felt free. I did not hurt hardly at all. I had cramps, like a normal period, but no other pain besides that. I had a bout of really bad cramps with constipation (I think from all the built up nerves) at the end of the class, but I went home and slept it off and the Tylenol helped.
It has now been 3 days since and I feel completely fine. I'm still slightly bleeding, but nothing bad, just like a light period. I can't thank the staff enough for being so wonderful and making me feel so accepted for my choice. If you are thinking about an abortion, I promise it is not as bad as people make it out to be. I am still very spiritual and don't feel it has affected my relationship with God. I hope this long story of information brings comfort for those like me who are looking for answers with no help. I made it and I was absolutely scared the whole time. It is normal to feel this way. It is a big change, but nothing you cannot handle. It actually has made me a stronger woman, and I have stronger feelings towards pro-choice and women's rights.
Everyone has a different story and chooses abortion for different reasons. I realize the importance of being able to choose something that directly affects your body, no one else. Life moves on and we learn from every experience. I still plan to have children with the same man when the time is right. We have grown even closer than we already were since this experience and I am every thankful for having such an understanding, supportive man in my life. I sincerely hoped this helps. My mission now is to tell about my experience and comfort those who feel lost like I once was." —Anonymous