17 y/o | surgical | 8w 4d

Note: The Exhale Pro-Voice After-Abortion Stories Hub includes people’s stories of their experiences and emotions, exactly as they have written them in. We do not edit these stories at all, and the content that follows this message is exactly as we received it. We know that people’s experiences are complex, and these stories reflect the many emotions they may be feeling after their abortions. From relief to grief, and everything in between, and all at the same time, we’re here for you.

Submitted by: Krys

My surgical procedure was today (11/21) and I spent days before my procedure to find others experiences that were similar with what I was going through. I felt like it gave me a good idea of what to expect and decided that I should also share my experience for those who will be doing this relentless searching themselves in the future.

I’m currently 17, a senior in high school, and have been on and off with my boyfriend for 4 years (also 17). We usually use condoms but the last time we had sex, we ended up using just the withdrawal method. Now, I was worried. I wanted to take plan B but you had to be 21 to buy it. I do have a older sister (22) but I didn’t feel comfortable asking her because my family is extremely conservative, never have I ever even tried to talk to my sister about things relating to sex. So I waited.

I waited to see if I got my period and Lord behold, I never got it. 1 week into my missed period, I took a test and it was positive. I instantly started crying, negative thoughts filled my head and I felt alone. I told my boyfriend right away (he’s pro-life) and I ended up telling my sister about 2 weeks later. She ended up being really supportive of whatever decision I chose to make and tried hard to be there for me and provide me comfort. She took me to talk to an OBGYN who confirmed I was pregnant and referred me to a clinic who could do abortion procedures if that was what I decided to do.

I live in Texas. By law, I cannot do ANY abortion procedure without parental consent, even planned parenthood in my area couldn’t Let me schedule a appointment if I wasn’t 18. Well, it seemed like my choices were becoming limited and I knew the longer I waited, the harder it would be to terminate it. Another week passed before I decided to tell my mom, needless to say she was more than upset. She said many things to me that were harsh, but has truths. The next day, she told me she’d support me with whatever decision I chose to make, and when I told her I didn’t want to have a child yet, she helped me book a appointment at the clinic my obgyn recommended.

My first appointment was 2 days before my procedure. The wait room was about the size of a college dorm (not the nice ones) and was full, though my appointment was pretty early, it was a full house. I filled out a lot of paperwork (more than usual because I’m a minor) and much of my appointment was waiting. They called me in once, told me legal information, then sent me back to the waiting room. 30 mins pass and they call me again to preform a sonogram and gave me the option to look at it (I did not) and the doctor came in to repeat the sonogram and tell me my options. They told me I was 8 weeks and 2 days at the time, which qualified me for the pill. However, the pill would require me to be home for several days since the process would be similar to a miscarriage. They said the surgical would only take 5 mins and that I’d be able to return to school the following day, so my mom decided that was the better option. They took my back to the waiting room, waited another 20 mins before I saw a counselor who explained more in detail how the surgical procedure worked, about how I was feeling and answered any questions I had. We then scheduled my next appointment 2 days later, 7:15 am.

I spent the following nights to research the procedure and many agreed that it mildly was painful but quick. I felt slightly better about what to expect and that following morning, I was in the surgical waiting room. The first called me back to put the IV in my arm, as well as give me the antibiotic and a pain med. I sat for about 20 mins before they called me back to the actual surgery prep area where they allowed me to change to a night gown, where they then wheeled me in a wheel chair to the actual surgery room. There was a nurse that gave me the medication through the IV, And another nurse that monitored my breathing and held my hand. They were super friendly and when the medication started to make me cry, they wiped my tears away and started talking about Disney+ to get my mind off things!

The doctor came in about 10 mins later and started the procedure, and to be honest, I have a very low pain tolerance but I didn’t feel much. I didn’t feel the shots they put in my cervix at all, and didn’t hear or even feel much of the suction. The most I felt was a slight tug near the last minute of the procedure and then I was done. They help me get up and put me in a wheel chair, they wheeled me back to the prep area where I changed back into my clothes and let me sit in a seat for a few minutes with a snack. I felt super nauseous (probably because you can’t what 4 hours before mixed with all the medication) and ended up throwing up quite a bit. I was also feeling VERY VERY drowsy, they let my mom come to the area I was in and provided us with a goodie bag that had heat pads and instructions for recovery. The moment I got home I passed out for 3 hours, and when I woke up I instantly felt better.

It’s now been about 12 hours since my procedure and haven’t been bleeding much, definitely less than my normal period. My appetite was still a little wonky but I overall felt much better and had a overall positive experience.

The nurses were lovely, the process wasn’t as bad as I thought, the pain was bearable, and I just want others to know that it may seem like a scary process but it’s 100% do-able and that it’s 110% what you choose to do with your body! You’ll get through it! Just make sure you’ve got someone to be with you every step of the way!

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