Emily's Story

Hello, I am 20 years old and in college. I know all about birth control, so when I found out I was pregnant less than a month ago I beat myself up for being stupid.

My boyfriend and I had been having sex for a month or so. I was trying to find cheap birth control but not having much luck. My boyfriend pulled out and besides, I have suffered from an eating disorders and rarely got my period. I figured I couldn't get pregnant. But I started feel sick all the time, a weird nausea that I had never felt before.

I was a week late when I got tested. The free clinic was pro-life and made me watch a video on abortion. They gave me baby products and a doll. They told me abortion was very very bad. The lady asked me what I was going to do, I don't remember what I said through the tears. All I could think was I needed a cigarette.

I've always known that if I got pregnant in school I couldn't have it, but it seems so cut and dried until you have something growing inside you. Something that is part you and part someone you care so much about.

My best friend drove me to our secret spot. I didn't tell her the results, just cried. We smoked a lot and talked about nothing. Finally I said how mad at myself I was which got us talking. She told me not to beat myself up because it was already done. I said I had no choice and had to get an abortion, and she said I did have a choice and had to do what I thought was right for me. But there is no way I could tell my parents and I couldn't carry a child for 9 months and hide it and give it up for adoption, like the lady at the clinic suggested.

Then I told my boyfriend. He knew it was a possibility but hadn't expected it. He's a vegetarian and respects all life so he felt bad about abortion, but knew that we weren't financially stable or mature enough to be parents. The next few nights I slept at his apartment and left his side only for class because I couldn't be alone. I held the doll a lot.

I was not far along, so I made an appointment for a medical abortion, no surgery for me. a week ago he took me to the clinic and I was given a shot of methotrexate. The next day I wrote him a note and we broke up. I was extremely moody. We were fighting about money and other things. We didn't have fun anymore and I was usually crying. He was frustrated because I was so upset and he didn't know how to deal with me. All I really needed was him to hold me and talk to me about it, but he wasn't proud of our choice and didn't like to be reminded of it.

Two days ago I put four pills of misoprostol in my vagina and started heavy cramping (I was told much like early labor) and bleeding necessary to complete the abortion. I had a prescription for the pain but couldn't afford it since I am saving for Christmas presents. My best friend got home and I was bawling. I told her I thought I was going to die. I could barely talk I was in so much pain. Tylenol and a heating pad weren't helping. I puked a few times reacting to the medicine. She held the trash can for me, reheated my heating pad, and went and got the pain pills for me, told me I could pay her later, in addition to the $100 she left me to help w/ the abortion.

After I took a pill I was ok. I had to be up every hour or so to change my pad because I was bleeding so much, but she stayed up too. We laughed and joked all night. My pain pills made me kind of out of it so I was saying crazy, funny things. In the night I saw white in a pad and realized I had passed the pregnancy tissue. I was told I might react emotionally to this but I really didn't. It didn't look like it had ever been a living creature, just looked like a little cottage cheese.

My boyfriend and I are still dating, but taking a break from being so serious. I realize I miss the things that I used to love because I was always with him. And its hard to think about how we had the seemingly perfect relationship until the pregnancy came along. We may get close again but I don't know. I said some really hurtful things in my mood swings, and my feelings were hurt when he needed time alone and I needed him with me.

He took me to the clinic this morning for a check up. After the sonogram, they told me I had aborted. I'm still cramped and on pain pills but its ok. I am bleeding a little. My process went quicker than most they say, a lot of women will bleed heavily for two weeks, and keep bleeding some for a month. Tomorrow I start birth control pills, which will also help stop the bleeding.

While I was pregnant I thought I would never want to have sex again, I didn't even like to kiss. I just wanted back rubs. As soon as the abortion was complete I stopped feeling sick to my stomach, and am not nearly as fatigued.

Right now all I feel is relief. Maybe that means I am selfish, but I am relieved that I can eat again (I lost about 5 pounds in the 5 weeks I was pregnant), relieved that I can stay awake at night, relieved that the tension w/ my boyfriend is less, and relieved that I am not bringing a child into the world that I cannot provide a good life for.

Maybe I will be sad at times but I don't regret my decision. It was the hardest decision--I was raised pro-life and I am very close to my parents and hate disappointing them (they don't know about any of this), but it was right for me, my boyfriend, and the baby.

I know this is a long story but I hope you will post it. I stumbled upon this website the night before my first trip to the clinic and read several stories. They helped me believe in myself and my decision; I hope this story may help someone else.

December 2000

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"The right to choose is fundamental to every woman's personal freedom."