I had an abortion.
2010 Costa Rica (born in Australia)
What were your feelings about doing the abortion/s?
Honestly I know the exact moment that I became sure of what I wanted to do. It was the very moment that it occurred to me that I was in a country where abortion was illegal. I felt a huge surge of certainty in my choice to terminate. At that point I felt relief. I was angry at myself and at the father for us not being as careful as we should have been. The condoms we used the first time we were together broke. I had thought it was okay, but apparently not! Central American condoms are not to be trusted! Used a known and trusted brand name. The thought of an abortion in a foreign country with no friends around and where it's illegal made me afraid. I was anxious and scared that something might go wrong or that it would be very painful. I hated having to make the choice, even though in the end, I chose the best option in a bad situation.
How did you do the abortion?
I was physically alone during the process. I hired a small private room in the hostel I was staying at and got to work. I had ordered the medication from this very website and even though I was super anxious for it to arrive, it did in fact arrive within 2 weeks of my ordering it. I took the first pill as directed 24 hrs before the others. That was fine - I felt no different. Then when I took the second lot of pills, around 30-40mins later I started to feel cramps. They swelled and hit a peak about 2 hours after I took the pills. From then, I had cramps and what felt like small contractions that were more painful than regular period cramps. That lasted for about 2 or 3 hours and I was curled up in my bed rocking back and forth and found it hard to talk for that time. In retrospect I should have taken some more painkillers to help mediate that pain. I think if you take the pain medication when you start to feel moderate pain, you will be fine. I was lucky in that during this time my friends back in Australia were talking to me via Skype on the internet and keeping me company at least from a distance. After the second lot of abortion pills, taken 3 hours after the first lot - I felt what I imagine was the abortion taking place. It was slightly more acute pain and an increase in bleeding with clots. From then the pain decreased to that of a normal period. I continued to bleed for a week or 8 days afterward, at the normal rate of a period.
What was your situation at this time?
The father of the foetus was not in a relationship with me. As it was, I had left him behind in El Salvador on a beach in the middle of nowhere. He couldn't leave the country and I couldn't live there to raise a child. Apart from that, I didn't want to raise his child. He had started another relationship since and we both decided that even though this was an awful predicament, the best thing to do was not to have this child. I personally believe that a child should be conceived in love and with purpose. I don't think the child would have had the life I want to offer my children if and when I eventually have some. And yes, I did also consider some more selfish reasons such as how my life would change and how I was travelling around the world for a few months and that my career has just started and how I was definitely not ready.
Did the illegality of your abortion affect your feelings?
I was honestly so emotional about the whole pregnancy. It was a shocking time. Added to which was the fact that I had all these pregnancy hormones running around my body. When the thought that it abortions were illegal where I was going to be for the next few months came to me - I was rooted to the floor with anguish and panic.
How did other people react to your abortion?
I only told two friends who were with me at the time and two friends back home. At the time I found out about the pregnancy, the two friends who were with me were very supportive about my options. When it came down to the act, neither of them were there for me at all. One said that she thought it should be a family matter and that she thinks I should go home - that she didn't think she deserved the burden of me right then. We obviously had a big disagreement then and parted ways. The second friend was supportive but travelled to a different country and didn't return for the actual termination process. My two friends back home were continually supportive of my decision which was the only blessing that I could see during the event.
Do you have children?
What is your religion?
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