From Regret to Liberation

Birds flying in india

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: Lily

I would like to share my story to women who are feeling regret or guilt after abortion, because I know very well how it feels like. I lived in the hell of my mind for 3 years. However recently, I had finally liberated myself from the regret and self-criticism, and I have never been so free and happy. Here is my story.

I had an abortion 3 years ago, as I was very scared to be a single mother. I was not in a relationship with the father of the baby, and he was very manipulative and emotionally abusive. At the time, I was not financially stable, as I just left my job to explore a different way of living. I was planning to deepen my practice in yoga and Ayurveda in India.

I was 35 years old, and I had a fear that it was my last opportunity to have a child. However, slowly I started to develop depression and anxiety during the pregnancy, and I decided to terminate it, as I didn’t feel that I could provide a nourishing environment for my child. I also had been suffering from depression and anxiety for many years, and I was not confident to be a single mother with the circumstances I was in.

After the abortion, I hated myself and I lived in regret every single day. I kept thinking what I could have done, and I was living in my past. I went into another long episode of depression.

Last month, I became pregnant again. This time, the father of the baby was going to be in the picture. I was really happy, but I miscarried the baby. I thought I would be depressed, but actually I realised that I am no longer wanting to be a mum. Because I realised that in this time and age, raising a child is really difficult. Not only financially, but also emotionally and mentally, it is a lot of work to raise a healthy child. Because of the depression I have experienced in my life (now I don’t have it thanks to years of therapy), I know how childhood trauma can impact a human’s life forever. Being a parent is a huge responsibility. Having a child just for the sake of wanting one is not good enough reason to me.

Also now I can see that nothing is perfect. Many of my friends who have kids aren’t necessarily so happy. They have lack of sleep, tight budget, and they are constantly worried for their kids. Of course, they get to enjoy the good things that parenthood bring, but there are also lots of sacrifices.

When we blame on ourselves for having an abortion, we dismiss the fact that there was a good enough reason why we made that decision. No women enjoys the process of abortion. Women who had abortion(s) are not selfish. They are not heartless. They are just human beings living in this imperfect world and doing their best.

Now, for the first time since my abortion, I feel the heavy weight has been lifted off my shoulders. For the first time, I can say to myself that I love myself and I did the best I could. I know I am a good woman.

I hope every woman can liberate themselves. Stop feeling ashamed or guilty. Life is not perfect. And we are just human beings doing the best we can.

You deserve nonjudgmental
after-abortion support.

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3 responses to “From Regret to Liberation”

  1. H

    Thank you I needed this especially right now while I’m crying to myself about the decision I made

  2. Dawn

    Thank you for sharing this, it gives me a sense of hope to be able to move forward in a positive light.

    Sat Nam.

  3. N

    This was very comforting and inspiring. Thank you for sharing.

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