Abortion Story: Michigan
Submitted to Abort73 by a 29-year-old woman on March 4, 2013.
I was 17 when I found out I was pregnant. Just after graduating high school. I remember being in complete shock, even though I hadn't been taking birth control. I was so naive; I was one of those girls that thought "it wasn't going to happen to me." I was in absolute denial when I took the pregnancy test. I figured it had to be a fluke, so I went to a health clinic to have a test done. When they confirmed I was pregnant, I had my breakdown. I couldn't stop the tears. I remember the nurse shaking her head and saying, "Only 17." I was terrified of everyone else viewing me in the same way. All I could think about was the disapproval of my family and friends, and being unsuccessful in life because of getting pregnant so young. I was beside myself, and so scared. I really didn't have anyone to talk to about this at the time. I didn't have any relationship with my parents; they were alcoholics and wrapped up in their own life problems. I was turning 18 in a few weeks, and I decided that an abortion was the only choice that I had. I made the appointment, and in the weeks before I just tried to not think about what I was doing, I tried to tell myself that when it was over things would be okay, and I would get my life back on track. I did not research anything, and I didn't talk to anyone about it other than one friend. The day that I went to that clinic will be a vivid memory forever with me. I cried because I didn't want to do it, but I was so scared that I didn't see any other way. I was 7 weeks. I remember just before going through with it, my heart telling me to just run away, to not do this. But I did it anyway.
After the abortion, I became numb. I tried to block it out of my memory for quite a few years. I actually tried to deny that it happened, justify it, and avoid the pain that I buried very deeply. But it would just creep up on me, more and more. I sought out counseling about 5 years after this, and it did give me a chance to grieve, to apologize to my unborn child, and face the permanence of what I had done. I have tried many times to forgive myself for this. Some days are better than others. What I know now is that things would have been okay. I would have had to deal with people talking about it for a while. I would have the disapproval for a while, but that would have faded away. But my decision is something I can never take back. I wish more than anything that I would have had someone to help me see this at the time. I wish I would have sought out support and given myself enough time to see that I still could have gone for what I wanted out of life, it just would have been a little harder, maybe a different path. I do not share my story very often, but I will if it can help someone else realize that in the end, the pain and regret of going through with an abortion is far worse than going through with an unplanned pregnancy. There are other options. I cannot judge anyone who has made the decision to have one, because I know the fear and feeling of helplessness that can lead someone to think it is the only way. But I know that for me personally, no matter how many years pass, this will always be a painful decision that I carry with me, and look back on so regretfully, knowing that I can never take it back.
Date: March 4, 2013