“I found out I was pregnant before my 22nd birthday. But actually, I had a strange feeling after a few days when I missed my period. Usually if I was a day or 2 late, I didn't think anything of it. But this time 3 days after I missed my period, I knew something wasn't right. I read to wait until 9 days late to take a test, so I did. But those 9 days felt so long, and I was so anxious because I was nervous to tell my husband. We have been married for 2 years, but we never actually discussed having children besides that we wanted to wait for a while. So, I didn't really know how he would react.
The day I had to tell him that I might be pregnant was the most stressful day for me. It was mostly because I was not ready to have children, and I knew he wasn't either. At that time, I was a babysitter, so I spent all day looking at Planned Parenthood and my options. I myself never thought I would ever make the decision for abortion, but the first thing I looked up was abortion options. When he got home that day, I was so nervous to tell him. When I told him, he was silent, his face looked like he was in so much pain. But silently we went to Walmart to get a pregnancy test.
When I took the test, there was a bright pink plus sign immediately. I didn't have to wait the 2 minutes to confirm. I cried so much that night and he barely spoke to me from shock. The next day I called Planned Parenthood to schedule an abortion. Unfortunately, because of our schedules, I couldn't have the abortion for 4 weeks after I found out I was pregnant. So that was very difficult for me, because part of me wanted to keep this pregnancy, but the greater part of me knew that we were not ready to have a child—neither financially, physically or mentally. I chose to have the surgical abortion because I read it was less painful than the pill.
The day before my appointment was very sad because we had just noticed that I was getting a little bump. We had to drive about 2 hours to the Planned Parenthood that I scheduled with. I cried the whole way there, from both sadness and anxiety. I was nervous there would be protesters, and if it was going to be an inviting environment. There were so many people that day, I was so surprised. The whole lobby was filled up. It was a lot of waiting which made it even harder. Waiting to be called to get paperwork, waiting to pay, waiting to go to the back for the ultrasound, waiting to talk to the abortion doula, waiting to be called back for the procedure. So much waiting.
When I was finally called back, my husband went back with me. I realized I wasn't going to get anything to help me with the pain. The pain was more than anything I have ever felt before. I cried the whole time. Honestly, I thought I was screaming but my husband tells me I wasn’t. I cried so much after the procedure. Both of relief and sadness. In my heart I knew I made the right choice, but while I was pregnant, I was happy, and excited, and even though I didn't consider becoming a mom before the unplanned pregnancy, I really did love it. Post abortion has been harder.
It’s been 6 months since the abortion and I have had depression stronger than ever before. I don’t regret my decision, honestly, I’m not sure what would have happened if I did keep the pregnancy. I became depressed thinking about what could have been. Imagining what the child would be like, what they would look like, etc. I was depressed that I couldn’t provide a good environment for my child to keep it. My due date was this month, which has been difficult to cope with too. It was a really emotional journey for me, and I am still not fully recovered, but I still do not regret my decision.
Physically, my periods have been really messed up, and I have way more premenstrual symptoms than I had before the abortion. And I think that also plays a role in why I have been struggling with depression as well. My husband has been so patient waiting for me to recover and has been by my side through it all. I am so thankful for that. Since it has been hard for me, I am going to seek other help, but there is nothing wrong with that. I wanted to share because I wanted to tell someone and share the raw details about how emotional this decision actually is. It’s not easy. One day I hope I will be ready to have children. And when I am, and my husband is, well will have children then. Thank you for providing me this safe space to share my story.” —Anonymous