I am the secret majority. Here I sit, a happily married 31 year old mother of two in the house I own with my two dogs and my cup of tea. On the outside by all appearances I have a, “perfect” and, “normal” life in suburbia. We shouldn’t judge by appearances.
In 2005, at the age of 17, I found myself pregnant and in high school. I was in a negative relationship and to quickly summarize this story, (before you assume this was my abortion) I had that baby, and he is 12 years old today. 10 years later, I had a wonderfully healthy and happy planned pregnancy with my daughter and our lives went on beautifully. My husband and I spoke occasionally as years went on that we might have another but I was fairly stuck on no as our current family consisted of most evenings spent in hockey rinks trying to balance a preteen with a toddler’s wants and needs.
In 2012, an event impacted me that left me with a PSTD diagnosis that made my recent years quite difficult on me stress wise. After the birth of my daughter, I struggled with PPA, and managed, however it scared me quite a bit and I fully relied on my husband to carry the weight of late night feedings and early morning wake ups. I had never felt so vulnerable. In 2012, I was sexually assaulted and harassed by my manager and that case went on for a long period of time. To this day, the trials and tribulations have not ended and I am left with significant mental trauma.
With children and busy lives my husband and I could barely manage to squeeze in sex twice a month. This past year I had removed the IUD due to the impact it had on my anxiety and we had successfully followed my cycles which were always predictable. Over Christmas we all feel ill one after another and somewhere in between there, happily together, we created the baby that is now inside of me. Reading the pregnancy test was so different from when we fell pregnant with my daughter. I immediately broke into tears and felt terrified. I knew in that moment that I couldn’t do it again. I felt an intense mix of shame and self loathing. I couldn’t believe we made such a mistake at this mature age.
The week that followed was full of phone calls to clinic, tears, chats with friends and family and long late night conversations with my husband. Every time I looked into the future I felt fear. I didn’t imagine a happy family of five, I saw depression, anxiety and guilt. I am a good mom to my children but I struggle daily sometimes to get by with anxiety. I knew, I know in my heart that bringing another child into this world could take me steps back in my recovery and my children don’t deserve that. Even with that justification , I don’t feel as though we deserve to end this baby’s life, and I won’t for a minute forget that we put ourselves here.
It is for this reason I have chosen to use the abortion pill knowing it comes with more pain and more paperwork. I somehow feel obligated to do this for this baby who will be lost. I want to take responsibility in all of the ways that I can. I never thought I would be in this position. I may have even judged those who were before me. I can even recall myself telling my husband if it ever happened I just couldn’t bear to abort it, we would just have to, “deal”.
Having a baby isn’t about just “dealing” with it. It’s an all consuming every second of the day and night sacrifice. Sometimes, that sacrifice takes a negative toll on you even with gift of watching your child grow. As moms we can’t really do it all, even though we try. We just do the best we can. I hope that more women, and especially more moms feel able to open up about abortion. This would help to prevent the stigma and shame that I have felt already, even before stepping foot into the clinic. I wish you all well.