How many abortions have you had?
What were your circumstances at the time of the abortions?
My first abortion was when I was 25 and had just returned from a 9 months travelling experience across Asia. I had broken up with a long term boyfriend before I left and I left him behind in London. On my return to Ireland through London we met up for a weekend and one thing led to another and we slept together once. When I got back to Ireland a few weeks later I discovered I was pregnant, although I wasn’t on the pill I was still very shocked and couldn’t cope with the truth. I had no job, money or stability and felt as I wasn’t with the father anymore I couldn’t possibly have the baby on my own.
My second abortion was when I was 30 – I had been working as an expat in Istanbul in Turkey in the fashion industry, I had just recently been made redundant from it at the time. I had been in a relationship with my Turkish boyfriend for 2 years, I was very much in love with him (in fact I idolised him).
How many weeks pregnant were you?
I was 7 or 8 weeks I think on both occasions.
What type of abortions were performed?
I’m not sure, on the first one I had general anaesthetic in a Marie Stopes clinic, on the second one in Istanbul I was given some kind of weird anaesthetic through a black mask that covered my nose and mouth in a horrible dirty hospital while sitting up on a chair with stirrups –, with my boyfriend by my side, it was extremely disturbing and I was crying. I remember the room was very dark and dingy, I felt dirty.
Did anyone pressure you or coerce you to choose abortion?
On the first occasion no it was my choice, my ex-boyfriend was very supportive and my two friends who knew thought it was probably the best idea.
On the second occasion – Yes my boyfriend pressurised me emotionally greatly ( he was very selfish looking back) and to this day I am very angry that I allowed myself to be subjected to it. Also a close female older friend recommended I go ahead with it. No –one supported my view to have my baby. The doctor also advised me it was the ‘best choice for all’ (All he was considering was my Turkish boyfriend’s “honour”).
How much information were you given on the abortion procedure at the time and by whom?
Not very much information was given to me except the basic medical info of what would happen following it physically. NO-ONE, NOT ONE PERSON, warned me of the horrific emotional and spiritual pain I would suffer as a result.
Do you think you were adequately informed at the time, of the physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual consequences of abortion?
NO – I was lied to by the abortion industry on both occasions that this was going to ‘fix my problem’. Little did I know it was going to give me later much, much bigger problems later on in my life.
What do you recall of the abortion procedure itself?
On the first occasion I don’t recall anything after getting up onto the theatre table in a gown, it was a very bright room with a lot of people, they kept the screen turned away from me, today that makes me feel very, very sad. I realised they were looking at a scan of my baby.
On the second occasion it was a propert hospital down a side street, in a very dirty dark room, I remember my hysterical crying.
What was your immediate reaction after the abortion and how did you feel?
The first time I remember waking up very giddy and feeling hysterically happy that it was ‘over’ and jumping up to give my ex-boyfriend the thumbs up from the window of my room which overlooked the carpark. He was outside in his car. This quickly faded to depression and numbness.
On the second occasion I remember feeling immediate extreme anger and sense of loss. I woke up screaming at my boyfriend in anger and actually jumped up off the trolley and attacked him in the most rage I have ever felt in my life. I also remember feeling extreme sadness at what had just happened and the finality of it.
How have your abortions affected you?
The first time I became very withdrawn almost overnight and felt numb and depressed. I went from being extremely outgoing and confident to being very quiet. I spent most weekends lying on the sofa getting stoned on marijuana. I didn’t connect my feelings to the abortion.
On the second occasion immediately I was extremely angry and tried to cope by drinking a lot of alcohol and taking a lot of drugs and going out. Every weekend I drank to point of collapsing and argued with my boyfriend, got into fights and thrown out of clubs. It wasn’t good. Slowly I also lost my self esteem. I was very lost in the world.
I started to have a lot of casual sex – I had a deep desire to get pregnant again to replace what I lost. I was very promiscuous and on a self-destructive path, my self-esteem suffered greatly.
How have your abortions affected others in your life and your relationships with others?
It has affected all my relationships as I carry extreme anger which I take out on others on a day to day basis, I over react to situations and ‘explode’. Low self-esteem has made it impossible for me to have a relationship since the second abortion. I keep people at distance from me, I don’t seem to be able to trust or ’let them in’. I am still single.
Immediately after my second abortion, my relationship with the father broke up. I began to hate him for doing this to me and our child. I engaged in a lot of dangerous casual sex encounters both in Istanbul and abroad as I ran away to travel again.
What has helped you come to terms with your abortions?
To be honest nothing helped me (I tried all drugs, alcohol, travelling, relationships, career, music and studying) until God reached down in to the pit of despair I was in and saved me three years ago. I was 33 years old. I had run away from Istanbul to New York to work… again, avoiding the issues and the pain I was feeling. I had finished a relationship before leaving for America and within days of being there, I discovered I was pregnant. The relationship was over and I did not want to restore it. I profoundly believe that this promiscuous relationship I had just had was an attempt and deep desire to replace my aborted children. God had been speaking truth into my life, slowly, for a few years but I was running from Him and the truth.
This third pregnancy crisis was my catalyst for crying out to Him to rescue me in my brokenness and weakness from the destructive path I was on.
I am so thankful that my baby survived abortion and I have been very blessed by her as she has brought me much joy.
I’m only half way an after abortion course but being able to confront my past in a safe environment has led me to know that my healing has begun and that I can be set free from all guilt, shame and the nightmare prison that is post abortive trauma.
Based upon your experience, what would you want to tell a woman considering abortion today?
That the world LIES to you that it’s a solution to a ‘problem.’ ( A precious life is not a problem in my opinion now)
You are lied to – ‘it’s not a child but a ‘few cells’.
You are lied to that you will be ‘fine afterwards’ – I wasn’t and most I know aren’t. I was wracked with guilt and anger that nearly destroyed me and sent me down a path of self-destruction, wrecking every relationship I had.
The JOY my beautiful daughter brings me, makes me realise LIFE IS SO PRECIOUS and it makes me sick to think if I had of listened to my close friends and aborted her she wouldn’t be here today, blessing me with joy. Yes children are hard work, but the Lord made a way for me and met my every need, materially and spiritually and He still does to this day!!