- Posted February 16, 2013 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Have you had an abortion?
Heartache & Hell
In 1996 my high school boyfriend and I were very much in love. Unfortunetley we were not mature enough to face the outcomes of how we were expressing our love for each other, and the summer before our senior year I became pregnant. We were two really intellegent individuals, and had a future together of college, careers, marriage and starting a family all planned out. I really had my heart set on spending the rest of my life with him. Now we were scared out of our minds with an unplanned pregnancy. I was pretty shocked when he immediately turned to the phone book declaring "we have to have an abortion." Abortion had not crossed my mind at all, and I felt very threatened by the thought of it even though I really didn't understand the full gravity of abortion. In the pit of my heart, I knew it was very wrong.
After keeping it to ourselves for a week, and still not getting past abortion being the only option I decided we should tell our parents. I really didn't want to have an abortion, and even though my mother had a history of being abusive I was willing to face her in hope of getting support to keep my baby. I called her crying, claiming only that I was "in trouble" and needed her to come pick me up. Knowing better, I sat in the back seat and she yelled at me all the way home trying to guess what I had done. Finally she peered at me in her rearview mirror and scowled at me, "You're pregnant, aren't you!" I began sobbing and nodded my head yes. She reached behind her swinging her fist at me with one hand while steering with the other. When we got home I was drug out of the car and never even made it into the house. She took her anger out on me right there on the front lawn screaming, kicking me, punching me, and spitting on me. Right then I conceded to the abortion. I remember my exact thoughts and feelings. I had no more hope of keeping my baby, and thought, "If this is how my own mother is going to react, how will the rest of my family and everyone else react?" I left and walked back to my bofyriend's where he was with his mother and aunt whom he confided in about our situation. It was pretty surreal, they didn't yell at me or hit me, but calmy explained to me that we made a mistake. That we weren't ready, that we would ruin our college plans and the rest of our lives if we had a baby now, and that abortion was the best option. It seemed it would be a solution to this problem we created, so I agreed to do it. My boyfriend's mom called to make the appointment, and I remember her asking me about my last period. I really didn't keep track of it, but they guessed I was about 5 weeks along. They scheduled my appointment for 2 weeks later, claiming that at 7 weeks the doctor would have a better chance of removing all of the "pregnancy tissue" because it was too small right now. Never having a baby before, that was all very foreign to me, and I had no idea what it meant. (Knowing now that what they meant is my baby needed 2 more weeks to grow to be big enough to abort really haunts me.) Waiting those 2 weeks was a nightmare. I couldn't eat, I couldn't sleep I just shook with fear and anxiety from the impending doom I would soon face. I remember thinking I'm pregnant and can't even tell anyone or talk about it, because it's all going to end soon. Then the day of my abortion came ...
At the clinic, it was so crowded there was standing room only. A staff person came out and asked those who were not there for a procedure to go wait in their cars. I watched an older couple walk in. The woman took one look around the crowded room and tried to turn around and leave. She asked her "man", "Do we have to do this?" "YES" he stated as he pushed her towards the receptionist. No one offered her help; we all just turned our heads. "Counseling" consisted of a group of women getting pregnancy tests, blood work and a quick demo of how they were going to "gently empty our uteruses." I had the image in my head of a chewed up piece of buble gum being removed. I was put to sleep for the abortion by a woman who hastily placed an IV in my arm stating only "Night, night." I saw or heard nothing of the actual procedure. I never met the doctor, I vaguely remember a masked man entering the room as I succumbed to the sedative drugs. After the procedure, I woke up in a wheel chair in excruciating pain screaming "It hurts, it hurts!" The nurse told me, "Be quiet, you'll scare the other patients!" I was taken to a room full of beds and other post abortive women, too many to count. I was told to lie down for a while, eat and drink some juice and cookies, and then get up and go. I could not move. It hurt so bad. Not just my body, but my heart. I closed my eyes, opening them to see a staff person lift the sheet on each woman’s bed, and using the same gloved hand, pull out a tampon full of blood and idodine. After 45 minutes I was told I needed to get up and go, because they needed my bed. Even though I was still in tremendous pain, and not feeling "recovered" what so ever I managed to stand up. Blood ran down my legs and all over my feet and the floor. I was pointed to the bathroom and told to clean myself up. They shoved my bin of clothes in my arms and sent me on my way. On the way home I felt numb, and once home I was relieved it was over with.
In the weeks afterwards, I was not me. Whoever I was before the abortion, that person has never existed again. I felt tremendous grief, guilt and emotional pain. I had bouts of uncontrollable crying, my heart HURT, and I was ANGRY. I hated him for putting me up to the abortion, and not sticking up for me and our baby. I had severe anxiety, I honestly felt that people knew what I did when they looked at me.
Neither one of us ended up completing college. He left after only one semester, taking a job instead, and I could barely get out of bed for class being too depressed and didn't return after the first year. That really hurt since supposedly we couldn't have the baby because we couldn't afford it and we had college plans. Guess we sacrificed our baby for nothing! I had thoughts of "how can we have children together in the future when we killed our first one?" I developed profound trust issues, and was so hurt I put up a huge wall and did things to make him hurt too. We couldn't even relate to each other anymore, and ultimately our relationship ended because of the abortion. It was so sad, and the whole thing has been the worst, most regretted heartbreak of my entire life.
I became very promiscuous and self-destructive, determined to replace what I had lost and fill this void in my heart. It affected all my subsequent pregnancies. I felt unworthy and unfit, like I didn't deserve to have a baby. I suffered terrible, and debilitating depression. It just seemed like this dark and heavy cloud hung over me where ever I went. I did not want to feel this way; I just wanted to be me, to be normal again. I turned to alcohol and drugs to try and forget about the abortion and numb the pain. At times I was even suicidal. I thought death was the only way to escape this anguish, and that I deserved it anyway for what I knew in my heart I had done that day. It didn't "fix our problem" it created many, many more.
It was just 2 years ago that I was finally able to come to terms with the abortion, and realize just how much it hurt me, my living children, and my husband who amazingly has stuck by me and willingly adopted another man's mess! I was never able to grieve my loss, because it was suppose to be nothing, just "tissue removal." Now that I have four living children, I can whole heartedly say that carrying a child to term for nine months is NOTHING compared to the devastation abortion caused me. I love each and every one of my children conceived, and they will always have a special place in my heart.