8 years and counting

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: Ashley

In January 2011 my boyfriend and I became “official”. It was a bit awkward for our families because my blood uncle is married to his blood aunt. We snuck around for a while and in that time had unprotected sex. I was on birth control pills, but every once in a while I missed a day.

I started feeling nauseous and feverish around February, but I’ve always had irregular periods and get sick very easily, so I didn’t think much of it. I went to urgent care, took some blood and urine tests, and went on my way with a prescription for cold symptoms. Two days later I got a call while I was at work. It was a Friday afternoon, and an incredibly busy day. The doctor left a voicemail saying these exact words, “…Your urine sample came back and tested positive for pregnancy, so you are pregnant…”

I was in shock and felt cold all over. Tears started to roll down my face. I tried to finish my shift as quickly as possible so I could go home and call my boyfriend to tell him about it. I couldn’t tell my mom. She was probably the one person I should have told, but I didn’t. She would’ve been angry and judgmental.

I called the baby’s dad and I told him I was scared and wanted to have an abortion. He was sad, but supportive throughout the entire thing. I went to planned parenthood and found out I was 6 weeks along and that I could do the oral form before the 8 weeks, but after that I would have to get a surgical abortion. I didn’t even think about it. I consulted with the doctor, took the pills, and had the abortion exactly one day before the 8 weeks.

When it was over, I felt relief and guilt…It’s been 8 years and I still think about it every day. I think about what my baby would look like, how old they would be, and how our lives would be day to day.

Eventually my boyfriend and I broke up. I recently saw him on New Year’s Eve and I got sad when I saw him with his two babies. They’re beautiful. He has a two year old and a 1 month old. It brought back old feelings about my baby and I realize I still haven’t had closure. I feel like I should talk to him and get closure, but I’m afraid he’ll say no or that it will make things worse.

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