Forever changed.

by Courtney

June 10, 2019

I was 23. I was abusing alcohol. I had been dealing with an eating disorder for around 10 years by that point. I was in a relationship with an abusive alcoholic…and I was pregnant.


I found out early, roughly at 4 weeks. After that pregnancy test turned positive, I sank down on my bathroom floor of my cheap apartment and cried. At first, my decision was to keep the baby, but I did not know how I was going to do it. I was taking classes, but because I was drinking every night before finding out I was pregnant, I was not doing so great. I had just switched jobs. I was irresponsible. Also, how could I bring a baby into a world when I could barely take care of myself?

I struggled for the next few weeks deciding what to do. I went to see a therapist. He was an older man, maybe in his mid to late sixties. I never thought that he would be the one to help me so much. He explained the process to me in very medical terms, but in a way that made me feel better about deciding to go through with it.

I live in a small, very conservative town. I called the only place that offered abortions, a women’s clinic. They required an initial visit and a down payment before they would perform the procedure. It was a Tuesday when I had that initial appointment. I was called back, had my blood drawn, and was taken back to a room with an ultrasound machine. They asked if I would like to see and I declined. After the ultrasound, they told me I was 9 weeks and 4 days pregnant, farther along than I thought, and only a few days shy of their 10 week limit. I paid the down payment of 500 dollars, which I had to borrow from my Mom. I scheduled my abortion for Thursday, two days from then.

Thursday morning came and my best friend drove me to the clinic. There were a few protesters outside on the sidewalk, as Thursdays were the routine days that the clinic provided abortions. I went in and was led to a room in the back with several other women, all of whom seemed to come from different walks of life. A few women who were not as far along were given a pill that would end their pregnancies and they left. Those of us who remained were given a pill to soften the cervix. And then we waited…

My name was finally called and I was led back into an exam room. A nurse explained to me what would happen. The doctor then came in and it was time to begin. All I remember was that it was loud and I felt a lot of tugging. And then it was over. I laid there for a little while after it was done by myself crying. Afterwards, I was given a prescription for birth control, paid my remaining balance of 300 dollars, again borrowed from my mom, and left, walked past the protesters, and began my life over again.

Choosing to have an abortion was one of the hardest decisions of my life, it was not easy by any means, but my life changed forever after that day. I will admit, I felt relief that I did not need to bring a child into such an unstable situation. I also felt like it was a fresh beginning. While I did drink again, it was never to the previous excesses. My abusive relationship ended. Around a year later, I met a man at work. We later married and had a baby boy. I was able to completely enjoy my pregnancy and give this little boy everything, in a loving and stable environment. I know choosing abortion is not right for everybody, but it was right for me. While I have only disclosed my abortion to a select few, I am not ashamed and do not regret it and I wish it was easier to talk more openly about it.

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