my abortion could mean I’m now infertile do I regret it?

In short - no.

After spending some time with other girls who’ve had abortion I’ve learnt how truly bizarre and fucked up mine was. Definitely not the norm. I keep wanting to talk about how bad my abortion was not to scare people out of having one, but even after how atrocious mine was, I don’t regret anything, and would do it all again if I needed to.

The only thing I regret from my abortion was not pushing for myself to be looked after better by the hospital I was at. They did a lot of great work with me (NHS in general has saved my anxiety induced hypochondria multiple times) and looked after me incredibly well, but there were things they weren’t listening to me about, they thought their expertise was more valid than what I was telling them was happening to me.

I got pregnant on New Years Eve. I then went on holiday with my family for a week, when I found out I was pregnant the hospital was insistent that I got pregnant on 7/8th of January. I know the rule of sperm being able to live inside you for 5 days, but even if this had happened to me the dates were still wrong. With the hospital going by the date of 7th of January when I finally had the abortion I was only a week under the limit of being able to have a medical abortion, which meant by my record of getting pregnant I was over the limit.

In my abortion I saw a full fetus come out of me, which after speaking to other people is not normal for medical terminations. When I went home they said I should bleed for around 2 weeks, at the 2 week point I was still bleeding heavily and passing huge blood clots.

Went back to the doctors, they said leave it another week.
Went back a week after, “You have an infection, heres some antibiotics should be fine in a week”
Back the week after, still bleeding “give it another 2 weeks” and it carried on like that.
Finally in May, 3 months after my first abortion I was given an ultrasound that said the abortion hadn’t worked properly and now I would need to have a surgical abortion - double abortion lucky me! The amount of tissue that was still in my uterus meant they classified me as still pregnant. The infection they had mentioned before had been there since the beginning and was still there 3 months later. An infection they told me could lead to me not being able to carry children in the future.

“We can test to see if this has happened… but only when you’re trying for children in a few years time.”
I knew when I was bleeding that something wasn’t right, I knew I should have pushed the doctors and said they needed to examine me earlier because now it could be too late, and I won’t know until I’m trying for kids and will have to experience heartache when or if I’m told I can’t carry them.

It’s the same reason I think I got pregnant - not pushing for the pill that I wanted and saying yes to the cheaper version. Knowing something wasn’t right with my bleeding but just accepting it. Push for your body and what you want for it, trust when you think something isn’t right.

Even after the complete fuck up of my abortion[s] if my choices really were to carry my own and have it at 19 or maybe having to struggle when I’m ready for it then I’d pick the latter every time.

If anyone out there could test me to see if I can have kids lemme know, could be a great next article.

I got pregnant whilst on contraception

Not all contraception works, even when taking it everyday, at the same time, this is something I found out in probably the worse way possible. I had been on Cerazette for 5 months before I got pregnant, I can’t remember the specific brand but I do remember my GP changed the brand 2 months before I got pregnant to “exactly the same pill but cheaper.”

I felt at every appointment I had about the abortion I had to mention I had been on contraception, I didn’t want to appear as someone who just took a risk or didn’t think about it. I’d been on contraception since I was 16, it was a part of my daily life that I never took a chance on. The huge bit of information that me and my friend who came to the appointment with me took away from seeing the nurse is that contraception just doesn’t work on some people, taking the pill everyday doesn’t mean its doing what its meant to. Donia mentioned to the nurse that she sometimes bled during the time she was taking the pill, and this was something that had been happening to me as well. The nurse then said that this meant the pill wasn’t strong enough for us and wasn’t doing what it was meant to - meaning we’d both been having sex when we might as well have been using nothing.

The pill not being strong enough for me was something that had never been explained to me as being an option when I went to see doctors about contraception. It was always just take this and you’ll be safe. I put my ignorance down to the lack of sex education I got from going to a Catholic high school but Donia said she’d never been told that either. Two women in their 20s had never been told that the contraception you’re on just might not work for you, when I’ve told this to other people my age there hasn’t been a single person come back to me and say they knew it, my Mom in her 50s didn’t know it either. Push for your own body, I wish I had said no to the cheaper option and stood my ground for what pills I am putting into my body every day.

I got really angry about this, about the lack of education I’d been given from doctors and sex ed teachers in school. Even now I learn so much about how a women’s body works that I’m embarrassed as 22 year old I didn’t know it before. I’ve had to teach myself biologically how a woman’s body works, because my school didn’t.

We have to do better to teach girls to know their bodies - it took me 3 months to even realise I was pregnant because I was sure every woman who gets pregnant has morning sickness and I hadn’t.

I’ve now got the implant and for me it works pretty well, the not having to really think about it for 3 years is something I love. Downside I sometimes get 2 periods a month, sometimes I don’t get a period for 3 months, which can be a lovely guessing game that means I have a constant supply of pregnancy tests in the bathroom, which thank god so far have only been a waste of time and money.

My hypochondria loves to play the “are we pregnant again?” game every few weeks.

how to support someone having an abortion

Disclaimer - you gotta have a bit of common sense.

When I first found out I was pregnant I phoned 2 people, the first was my friend Amy she was at pre-drinks to go out. I didn’t let on to what was happening, didn’t want to spoil her night so just asked that she phoned me the next day. Then I phoned Ash. Ash has been one of my best friends for years, we’ve helped each other in situations that neither of us deserved to be in and I just needed to hear from someone who knew me really fucking well, who could tell what I was feeling from my tone of voice.

I can’t remember the intimate details of this phone call but I remember he never asked if I was joking, which I would have thought, both of us being 19 at the time would have been his initial response. He asked if he could tell our other friend who he was sat with and then made some stupid joke down the phone to me which is actually when I started to cry, that cry when you’ve laughed and then it dawns on you that even if you can laugh you’ve still got to cry sometimes.

Ash is one of the best people to help you with something like this and heres why. He listened to me a lot, he’d sit on the phone let me cry and bitch to him, without trying to give advice because he didn’t know anything about abortions. It sounds like such cliché advice but I really just needed someone to listen. I didn’t want someone who hadn’t dealt with it to tell me how to feel, I didn’t even want someone who had been through it to tell me how they felt, because every single person deals with it so differently. He texted asking if I was okay but didn’t pester if I didn’t reply. Having a friend that knew me better than I thought he did was a true gift during that time. I wish every person going through this could have their own Ash, and if you don’t, I want this site to be a place to feel some comfort.

Something that really made me lose faith in a friend during this period of time was her annoyance at me not responding. Not responding for the weeks surrounding the abortion and specifically on the day I had the abortion. She texted while I was still in hospital asking if I wanted to go on a night out soon, I opened and didn’t reply, about half an hour later I got an angry message about how I never want to go out and it’s “so rude” that I had left her on read. Even writing this now almost 3 years later it still hits an angry nerve in me. You know your friend is dealing with something at the moment, you know that today is the day the abortion is happening, yet her priorities still lay with the issue she had with me. I’m not saying issues between friends need to be put permanently on hold when someone is dealing with an abortion or any shitty situation, but there should be a level of understanding there.

For a few weeks I had to completely care for myself, maybe selfishly but just look after me. During anybody’s time of difficulty it should be clear (or at least it is to me) to just let them deal with it, bring up your issues with this person later, let them ignore your texts for a while, if they don’t feel like organising a night out at the moment maybe just grant them that.

It’s a hard thing to balance when your friend is retreating into themselves and you’re trying to be there for them. Finding the right mix of reaching out and checking in without being pushy or hurt if they don’t reply is a combination that isn’t easy to manage.
But neither is being pregnant and having an abortion so suck it up and be a good friend.

telling my mom I'm pregnant and having an abortion

My support system at the time of my pregnancy and abortion was my Mom and a small group of friends I’d had since high school.

Most of my uni friends who knew seemed to have other things on their minds, or simply didn’t care. At the time I wasn’t really bothered about this, I was too focused on just getting it done but thinking back to it I wish more people who knew had checked in a bit more with me. The friends who did never did more than just ask how I was doing or if everything was going okay but that meant a lot especially when you’re dealing with something that makes you feel so isolated from everything. I think some of the reason more people didn’t check in is the fear around the subject of abortion, fear of saying the wrong thing and fear of having the person whose going through it breakdown on you and you having nothing to say.

I can take the blame here for having such a small support system because I didn’t tell anyone in my family apart from my Mom, I also didn’t reach out for help. My Mom and Dad have been separated since before I was born so I didn’t really need my Dad to know. My sisters and me don’t have a very emotional relationship, we’re all very awkward around anything remotely personal (probably due to my Dad’s lack of emotional output) not like we’ve known each other our entire lives. Then my Dad and step Mom, in all honesty I don’t know why I didn’t tell them when I was pregnant. I knew I’d tell them I’d had an abortion, but when I was pregnant I just needed to deal with it, get it done and then take it all in after.

Telling my Mom wasn’t something I was particularly nervous about, I’m very lucky in knowing that my Mom supports my decisions in almost everything I do. There was no fear of her thinking I was making the wrong decision or that she was disappointed in me, and for that I’m incredibly grateful. I just knew she’d support whatever decision I’d made, like she usually does as long as I’m not being an idiot about something. I’ve spoken to other people who have had to tell their parents that they’re in similar situations to the one I was in I’m very aware it isn’t the case for a lot of women and girls to have support from anyone let alone their families.

After watching TV with my Mom for about 2 hours I plucked some confidence out my ass and said I was pregnant. I said I already had my appointments booked in to deal with it and that she was the only family member I was planning on telling.

“Oh Ab my poor darling girl” - Her voice was pure pain of having to see your kid deal with something shitty.

She was mostly frustrated for me, she knew I’d been safe with everything, she knew I wasn’t naive about those things and she knew I wasn’t in a great relationship. Her main frustration was focused on me being put onto a cheaper version of the pill a few weeks before I got pregnant. This is where he anger and emotion went because it was the only thing either of us could blame other than sheer bad luck.

She offered to come to my hospital appointments with me, but respected when I said I needed to do it by myself. Drove to Manchester a few days after the abortion and drove me back home while I cried and slept.

Writing about it now over 2 years later, we’ve spoken about it multiple times. She’s said she hoped that this would be the decision I would make when I first said I was pregnant. She wanted me to finish university, to travel, live in different countries and be really ready for a baby if/when I finally decide that I want one.

I’m really lucky to have a Mom like her, not just with the abortion but with a lot of other things she does for me. Having the abortion and all the negative side effects that came with that have strengthened our relationship to the max, which really isn’t what I expected to come from it, but I’m very fucking grateful that it did.

If can find any silver linings from the fucked up mess of an abortion I had then I’ll take them and run with them.