I was 23 when I decided to have an abortion...


“I was 23 when I decided to have an abortion. I had a 6 year old at the time, who I had given birth to at the age of 16. I had spent almost 7 years working and struggling to build a life for the two of us. At 23, I finally had done that. I had a good job, a nice house, money and time to do the things we needed/wanted, and I had done it all by myself. I was single but had been dating someone on and off. One day I wasn't feeling right, I was exceptionally moody, uncomfortable, and tired. One of my coworkers suggested I take a pregnancy test. I honestly didn’t think it would be positive. When it was, I broke down. I worked too much. What about my child I already had? How would I keep a job this demanding and raise a baby? I wasn't even in a relationship. I had even taken my birth control like I was supposed to.

After a week or so of debating with myself and talking to family and a friend, as well as the guy I had been seeing, I decided that abortion was my best option. I didn't necessarily want to have one, but I knew it was the right thing to do in my situation. Another baby would turn everyone's lives upside down and it was hard enough being a single mom to one, let alone two. I made an appointment at a clinic in the city near where I lived. I chose to have a medical abortion because I was still very early in the pregnancy. I had to talk to a doctor on the phone before I went, and when I got there everyone was very nice and friendly. I had to have an ultrasound to determine gestation, and they give you the option of seeing or not seeing it, as well as if you want a picture copy. Although it felt a little strange, I chose to keep a copy of the ultrasound because this wasn't something I had wanted to do, but I knew I wouldn't be able to give this baby the life it deserved, and I was making this decision because I cared about the well-being of my potential future child.

After the ultrasound and some tests, I was given the first pill. I teared up a little after I took it as the doctor explained the rest of the process, and she gave me a minute to collect myself before going any further, and even told me everything I felt was normal, that it's okay to feel sad. I went home that day with four more pills and some pain medicine they prescribed. I had to wait 6 hours from the first pill to start the rest of the process. I chose to have my 6 year old stay with family while I did it which was a good decision. I had to lie down and insert the four pills into my vagina, then lie flat for at least 30 minutes. I had a book, some snacks, water, and my pain meds/advil on hand. The guy I had been seeing came over, and we laid in my bed and watched TV as it took effect.

About two hours in, the cramping started. At its worst, it was bad enough to make me grab my stomach and hold my breath, but not bad enough to make me cry out in pain or anything. The blood started about 5 hours after the pills. It was very heavy, and there were large clots. I took the pills in the late evening so I slept through a lot of it, only waking up to use the bathroom periodically. After about two days the blood started to subside a significant amount. I still had to wear a pad but not the giant maxi pads like at the beginning. I still had some mild cramping but nothing unbearable or that advil didn't help. Emotionally I was a little confused. I was sad and thought for a moment I regretted my decision, but in the end I'm comfortable knowing I did what was best for me and my child I already had. Overall it was a hard decision, uncomfortable and even sad, but I can say despite that, my abortion was a positive experience overall. The most important part is knowing you're doing what's right for you.”- Anonymous

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