I’m 33 years old, happily married, and we have spent a lot of time talking about whether we wanted children or not, and just really concluded that we didn’t. When I became pregnant accidentally, that would have been the moment our minds would have changed but they didn’t. I did feel like a failure though, this isn’t supposed to happen to people in their early 30s, and then there were those feelings of shame about not wanting this, and just feeling that that makes you somehow a bad person, or less of a woman and that kind of thing. I was embarrassed phoning up as a married woman. You often feel like, or what I’d read was that people were justifying their reasons for an abortion being around not having enough money, or not being in the right relationship. For us it was just a free choice that it was unplanned and a mistake. With the telemedicine and getting the pills by post that started to make me feel a lot better. The care was excellent - just compassionate and non-judgemental. What was difficult in the lead up was not really knowing too much about what to expect. Because obviously they say it’s going to be different for everybody, so I was thinking I’m not sure how painful it’s going to be, I’m not sure how much I’m going to bleed, how bad the cramps are going to be, and there’s not really, I suppose it’s hard to find a lot of information about that. In the end it was ok. Since I had the abortion and told friends, I found out that almost all of them have known somebody who has had an abortion. A couple of months ago I just would have been so shocked by that, and I just think it’s unbelievable actually how common it is. If it was less stigmatised people could be a bit more open about this, then people wouldn’t perhaps have so much fear and anxiety. I decided to tell my story because I’ve realised that there is still quite a lot of stigma and secrecy around something that actually should be like accessing any other kind of reproductive healthcare. One thing that I found difficult though was actually just how lonely and isolated I felt. With all the friends that I’ve got who’ve had children, had miscarriages and struggled with fertility, I feel like they’ve always been able to be quite open about that with friendship groups. And I really felt like I couldn’t with a lot of friends, because I wasn’t sure how they would react. And I think this is a real injustice in society.
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