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Why I had an abortion

I’m being real when I say that if you are in a position where you’re feeling torn about whether or not you should have an abortion, I cannot imagine what you’re going through. Don’t get me wrong – I’ve been there myself, but it has to be understood that no one experiences this situation in exactly the same way and if you’re having to think it through, it’s not as simple as it is for those who have their mind firmly made.

I’m not here to judge anyone’s decision to have an abortion or not have one, but if you’re looking at this page then it may be that have previously made, or are currently in the position of making this choice. Or it may be that you saw the title of this page are here to judge and throw metaphorical stones at me for my decision.

Either way, everyone’s circumstances are different. Everyone’s views are different and everyone’s circumstances are different. If you did come to this page because you’re having a hard time with abortion, your perspective is going to be based on any number of things, like where you’re from, how old you are, your housing/ job/ school situation, how you became pregnant, the role of the guy, the health of the baby or your health, the judgment or support of your family and friends, feelings about your inability to be a parent when you don’t feel ready or if you feel you’d be bad at it, whether you have a stable home, if you’re worried about your goals in life – everyone’s situation is different. So I can only tell you about my situation and why I made the decision that I did. Maybe you might relate. Maybe not.

I was 20 years old when I got pregnant. I was the same age as my mother when she got pregnant with me and I hated the relationship I had with her. I was in a relationship with a guy who was a rebound from an ex-boyfriend who it took me 3 years to get over (yes, I said 3 whole years). Yikes! The guy I was now dating was a lovely guy, but I was in a bad space and acting like a monster and I cannot say, for love nor money, why that dude was with me. I was broken, I was angry, I had fits of rage and I was a big mess. But I was dating him and we were bumping uglies, you feel me?!?

I didn’t expect to fall pregnant, although I realized quite soon after that every time I made the decision to get into bed with a guy I was making a decision to potentially get pregnant. This was a hard lesson for me to learn because before this I’d felt that contraception was fool-proof (I was 20!). But that is not the case. Every. Time. I. Had. Sex. I. Was. Opening. Myself. Up. To. Getting. Pregnant. How could I not have figured that one out was a question I had to ask myself when I found out I was pregnant after going for a routine visit to a clinic to renew my contraception. I’d been there several times before to get the implant or condoms. The pregnancy test was just a routine thing they did before they’d be able to give me new contraception. The test had never been positive before. Why would it now? So I was shocked to my core when the nurse turned to me and said those words that would change my life forever. “Hun”, she said rubbing my lap, “You’re pregnant”. I don’t remember much of the conversation from there except she immediately asked me if I wanted an abortion and sent me away with some literature on abortion.

I walked through the King’s Cross neighbourhood totally in shock. But, from the moment I found out I was pregnant, I loved my baby. So in anticipation of those who, if they were in front of my face right now would yell “How can you say that when you had an abortion?” Well, I can only say what my experience was and I don’t care if you feel I was justified or not or whether you think I couldn’t have loved my baby because I had an abortion. To those who judge and say how could I love my baby and have an abortion…it simply doesn’t feel that simple when you are in this situation. Ask anyone who is on this site right now, on this particular blog because they’re looking for support. For those saints out there, fine if you want to judge me. To anyone who’s in a tough spot, here’s what happened next.

I worked in central London and I excitedly hurried to a pharmacy and got myself the best brand of prenatal vitamins and iron that I could. I was nervous about having to tell my boyfriend when I got home, but hey, that was a problem for later on. I finished work, got home and then I started to get so darn nervous. I thought about the band aid technique, so I just ripped it off right there and then. “I’m pregnant”… I see the look of disbelief on his face, I hear the words come out of his mouth, almost in slow motion. I brace myself for the response and… there it is… “I don’t want the baby”. What in the world was I honestly expecting to hear? I don’t know! I don’t think I’d even thought it through. It was another one of those ‘how could you not expect that’ moments.

And from there I went into automation. It never even occurred to me that I could make it on my own. All that I knew was that there was a man who didn’t want the child and I realized that I felt that this abandoned child was going to be another me. From that point, I’m missing parts of what happened. I think that the biggest reason why I cannot remember much between that evening and the day I had the abortion is because I think my next moves felt pre-written. It’s an odd thing to say, I know, but the thing is that I was classed as a young adult, and I was given the choice of having an abortion right off the bat. It was this option, which was presented to me as an option 30 seconds after I found out I was pregnant that I immediately fell back on as a safety system. From that point on I didn’t have to engage with my feelings because someone was already there with a plan.

Please understand, I know that the ‘holier than thou’ crew will lay into me. What I just said wasn’t an excuse. It wasn’t a justification. It wasn’t my best moment. But it was me and that’s what happened and that’s what I felt and that’s how the rest of it went down. I didn’t have emotions at that point. Time went fast. I kept on taking the prenatal vitamins and iron, I started talking to my baby in my belly, but I had no emotions. Not positive, not negative, not sadness, not anger, not fear, not desperation. Apart from the talks I had with my belly, I did not engage in conversation with anyone and four weeks later, I was sitting in the doctors chair and he was handing me a suppository to start the abortion. I still had no real emotions. That is, until I started to bleed an hour or so afterwards and that pain in my stomach turned into pain in my heart. After weeks of not processing any emotions this overwhelming feeling of grief hit me like a wave. I cried then and I still cry now.

Reflecting on what I did and how numb I felt, I know that deep down I was unsure about terminating the pregnancy. I want you to know that I take FULL responsibility for my actions because I am grown woman. But the reality was that I was not in the right state of mind to make any decisions. Had I have taken a step back out of the situation to be able to make a decision that wasn’t the optioned offered to me right from the get go, I believe my decision would have been different. As the days passed following the abortion and the situation began to feel real again, I kept on thinking what it would of meant to have someone also provide me with an opposite opinion of “an abortion seems like an option you need”. I’m not sure why I wasn’t told that if I really wanted to, I could raise my baby and I could raise him or her well. I think that at the time I heard “I don’t want the baby” I detached from myself emotionally. I did not recognize that I had the strength to be a good mother and I didn’t hear it from anyone else either. I still talk to my baby. I loved my baby and I still do.

If you are here because you are in the difficult position of making one of the hardest decisions ever, I don’t have the answer as to what you should do. I wouldn’t make the decision I made before, but that’s because I’m certain that God’s got my back – he always has even though I didn’t realise it. If you ever want message me, go ahead. If you want to comment or share your experiences of being unsure about having an abortion, feel free. Thanks for listening. Speak soon!

Shay x