Finding strength

I found out that I was pregnant on January 3 pregnant and had an abortion 2 days later. I was almost 10 weeks pregnant. I am 27 ½ years old. For 2 months I had been chronically ill with reflux, constipation, vomiting, bloating, fatigue.. and at the end – a sore back. I had sore breasts at one stage but thought this was PMS related. My doctor referred me to a registrar at the hospital who scheduled a colonoscopy. I found out I was pregnant prior to the procedure, it was all linked to pregnancy. I have quite a long cycle, usually at least 6 weeks between periods. I thought that my period was late due to how sick I had been – I have missed my period before due to sickness.

We only had sex once during my last cycle. We didn’t use protection. I had a contraceptive pill prescription ready but was waiting to get my period before I could start it. I guess I did take a risk. We had sex without contraception a few times before during the 2 years of relationship, but had used the withdraw method. This time he came too quickly. He freaked out about it and suggested the morning after pill. I brushed it off – I said he was being paranoid. He was right to be paranoid.

On the 3rd of January I went to the supermarket to pick up some groceries after being away on holiday. I had thoughts of picking up a pregnancy test, just in case as my period was a bit late. I thought I was being a bit paranoid, as I have been paranoid about being pregnant, whilst on the pill. I completely forgot about buying the test but remembered that I had forgotten something else. By shear luck I went into another supermarket, and had the confidence to pick up a pregnancy test, and purchase through a self serve checkout.

My partner was asleep when I got home. I was relieved, as I could do the pregnancy test without having to conceal it. I didn’t want to worry him. So I pee’d on a stick. I put the timer on and almost forgot about it. Two minutes later I walked into the bathroom and saw the stick. I picked it up, and there were the two lines. I was in complete shock. I thought there must be something wrong with the test. I could not believe it. I walked into the bedroom and sat on the bed where my partner lay. I could not talk. I just sat there frozen with the stick in my hand. He asked me what was wrong. He put two and two together. I sat there frozen. Then I held my head in my hands and cried. Was frozen, and then cried again. I suggested we do another test. I then decided to make an appointment with a doctor. I called around most of the city and finally found a doctor that was open.

On the way to the doctor my partner called a friend and told them the news. I had not told anyone. I really struggled with this - now this person knows, and they don't agree with abortion. What's worse, only days earlier had his wife given birth to his first child. I have not seen or spoken to them since. We saw the doctor who confirmed it, I was pregnant. We had not talked about what we would do. The doctor talked through some of the options with us. I struggled to get my head around the prospect of termination. I found it hard to even consider, when for so long I was sure it was something I was not mentally strong enough to do. I had my mind made up prior to this happening. I come from a Catholic family, my grandmother used to participate in anti-abortion marches. My grandmother passed away a few years ago but I think she would turn over in her grave to know I was considering termination.

We left the doctor to go get blood tests to assess how far along I was - to measure my HCG levels. The blood test clinic was closed. We bumped into a male clothing store assistant my partner knew, and my partner told him I was pregnant. It was very awkward for me, as it was for the guy. I still don't know why he did that. My partner kept demanding an answer from me whilst we were walking through the busy city. I said to him that I needed time to process it. He said he wanted to talk but I couldn’t. His version of talking was him trying to convince me to abort. I needed to process it all in my own mind. I was in shock.

On our way home he kept pressing me. I needed to be left alone. I went home to think for a bit and he called his mum. I sat at home and tried to process the news. It felt so surreal. I imagined myself with a baby and even had though about baby names. I started to accept the idea. On his arrival home he demanded an answer. He said I needed to make a decision in the next hour, and that he wouldn’t just sit there going crazy. That night he didn’t comfort me or hug me. He went for a long walk and drunk beers. Later he slept on the couch. I felt so alone.

The next day my partner drove me to get a blood test which confirmed by pregnancy. On the way home from the pathology clinic he decided to drive to a café. He was demanding about wanting an answer. I said that I was undecided but at this point I felt that I wanted to keep it. He was very angry. He started crying and asked if he had a choice. He said that he couldn’t support me, that he would leave me. We barely spoke on the way home.
At home it was pretty tense. I caved in. I wouldn’t bring a baby into the world that wasn’t wanted. Before he said those cruel words I hadn’t made my decision. I hadn’t had time to process it all, I was still in shock. I called around a few clinics and made an appointment for a termination, a week out. I couldn’t wait, it was driving me crazy. I felt so many symptoms – incredibly sore breasts, tiredness. I could feel pregnancy. I managed to get an appointment for the next day.

That night I told him how I felt - I didn’t feel that I had a choice. He pushed me into a corner. We talked through it and eventually explored the option of keeping it, through to 1am in the morning. I realised that so many of my goals and dreams would be compromised by having a baby now. We are living overseas to earn and save for a house deposit back home, and start a family in a few years. He wanted the best for our future family. I knew that as much has he had acted like a jerk, that it came from a place of love. I pictured what life would look like for my baby. The timing just wasn’t right. I went to sleep feeling right about our decision.

The next day we drove to the clinic. There was a protestor outside, even at 8am in the morning. The clinic staff were pleasant to deal. But the waiting room was jam packed and contained a few sobbing girls. I felt sad for the girls in there, especially the younger ones who were really traumatised by the whole thing. I felt confident and not tearful. We waited for a long time before I was taken upstairs to a room where I had to put on a hospital gown and sit in a room. I had a surgical procedure. They take you took a room afterwards to wake up from the anaesthetic. I woke up laying down on a bed. My partner met me in the waiting room and took me home. He was supportive through the procedure. But a few weeks in, he quickly grew tired of my groans. I felt so sick and tired the time, and my hormone levels were through the roof. I felt angry a lot, hormonal. And I couldn’t tell anyone. In saying this, we became closer together and I felt so much love for him.

He has left the country for a holiday and now I’m on my own. I’m coping the best I can without talking to anyone about what I just went through. It makes it easier that no one at work knows. I am happy to be getting on with my life. I feel relieved and generally not depressed. I do think about what might have been, from time to time. I still feel angry with the way he treated me through those first few days, but know that I have to forgive him and move forward if our relationship is to succeed. I feel like he has moved on. He seems to have little empathy for  how I am feeling. I am still physically sick, as my body still thinks it's pregnant. All in all, I don’t feel emotionally scarred by the procedure. I feel fine. I never knew how strong I was. The thing I think about the most and struggle with is how he behaved through all of this. I am strong but I know this may put a strain on our relationship. I hope we can work through it and become much stronger as a couple.
An Ep User An EP User
2 Responses Jan 22, 2013

After the termination I felt foolish for thinking of baby names. I even looked up some baby books I was going to purchase. I understand where you are coming from and respect your decision.

I saw my doctor yesterday who asked me how I was and it brought back all the old feelings. I know I need to forgive him and learn to trust him again. I had a good chat with him about it on the phone before. I think the key is to talk about how you are feeling/ what you are going through, be frank about your needs and how he can help you.

Keep communicating with people you love and trust, and those you can turn to for support. There are so many people out there going through the same thing, you don't need to go through it alone.

Wow, it seems our experiences are very similar. I had everything planned within a week of finding out I was pregnant. I had names picked, had signed up for classes, and had received a large "new baby" bag from my local Pregnancy Resource Center (a few diapers, a stuffed animal, teethers, a onesie, etc). My significant other was so terrified that he was physically sick. He too was angry and was threatening to leave me (although he never flat out said it, it was more subliminal). I couldn't stand to see him unhappy and hated the idea of bringing a baby into a broken family and finally agreed to an abortion.

I have hope that my SO and I will work through this and I hope the same for you. We are all strong women and can make it through. We just have to take the healing one step at a time.