We're not monsters!
What were your feelings about doing the abortion/s?
It is hard to heal emotionally by yourself. Of course I had people to talk to and even my friend who went through the same thing. But the problem is, you're the only one going through that in that moment. And nobody can understand your feelings 100%. But that's okay. It doesn't mean people don't care. For a long time I honestly felt fine. I was with friends, they didn't know but at least I had company. But then the first few hours came where I was alone and without my boyfriend. I cried till he came back. The first few breakdowns I didn't really know why I was sad. It was probably just the hormones. I felt very sorry for myself to have to go through all of that (as if it wasn't my fault). Later on I was sad because I knew I would have loved that baby so so much. I didn't exactly feel guilty but it felt like I missed a chance and would never have a baby that was mine and my boyfriend's. I don't like that through the whole journey you know when you're being unreasonable but you can't help it. And it doesn't feel any less real just because you know there is no reason. My boyfriend and I even talked about having children later when we can provide for them and have a secured life. But I still miss the baby sometimes and also being pregnant. It's so ironic because during the pregnancy I just wanted my body to go back to normal and the baby to be gone. And then the guilt came. I didn't regret it, I was terrified at the thought of being pregnant again. But the guilt was still there. About flushing the baby down the toilet, lying to my friends, getting sympathy from strangers at the hospital even though I didn't have a miscarriage. About being mean to my boyfriend who was with me the whole time. And about putting my life above the baby's. I want to be a mom. Just not now. I need different circumstances. I know how hard it is to have no money. The worries are so present and constant, it dictates your whole life and you can't talk about anything else. I want to be a loving and stable mom, not a depressed disaster. But I would have loved it soooo much. One time when I broke down my boyfriend said "We're not monsters." I'm trying to remind myself of that and also that nothing is written in stone and I can have a baby once I'm ready. I hope I didn't scare anyone by reading this, if you still have to go through it. I'm not gonna lie, it's hard. But it's going to be alright. With a little help you can get through this and carry on with your life. Maybe you're even more bonded to the people you love. If you have nobody to talk to, there are always people online who will listen and give advice. It might feel like it but you're never truly alone. And don't give your feelings to much meaning, sometimes it's really just the hormones.
How did you do the abortion?
I expected it to be less painful, to be honest. I felt dizzy the whole day after taking the first pill. That scared me because most women don't even feel anything from that. Maybe an hour after I took the second pill, I threw up and the cramps began. They were much worse than period cramps even though I just started week 7. For the first hours I just laid there in fetal position with a hot bottle and went to the toilet every few minutes to let the blood out. When I felt a big blob I wasn't sure if it was the baby. But I had a feeling. I looked at it for a moment and flushed. I still feel bad about that. Maybe it deserved better than that. But it's too late to change that now. After maybe two hours the cramps began to fade and only come back periodically. Not less painful but at least not constantly anymore. My boyfriend was very helpless the whole time. He held my hand but he couldn't touch me anywhere else because of the pain. As I said, I had a curettage the day after. I was terrified to be in a hospital. I've never been there before. I had surgery at 7pm and had to stay over night. After it was over I was mostly in a different state because of the narcotics. It hurt bad when I peed and I was very weak. But glad everything was over and done with. Then I got stronger everyday which felt great. It made me so happy. But while healing physically I didn't take time to heal mentally. I feel like my description sounds really negative. I mean, the whole experience was. But that's just what an abortion is. I want to emphasize that the way it turned out was almost the best way possible. Because of the help of womenonweb I was able to take the pill at home, stay in my bed, have the support of my boyfriend who tried everything to make it better. Nobody judged me, nobody thought I was a criminal, because nobody knew. And womenonweb made me feel like it's okay what i did. I think most gynecologists in this area don't believe that, so they can't really support women in need of help like me. I am forever grateful.
What was your situation at this time?
I feel like that is a very hard question. Especially because I tend to be too hard on myself. As if my plans and my education were more important than a life. But if it wasn't me who had the abortion but a good friend I would be so understanding. I would say that you have a right to live a good life. You have a right to do your masters degree and start a career. If it's what you want to do, do it. You worked so hard for it. And at seven weeks what is inside your uterus is hardly a baby. It's not a conscious being. I'm trying to not be too hard to myself and believe all of that.
Did the illegality of your abortion affect your feelings?
I think it's a shame that aborting is only legal under certain conditions. Well even that is not 100% correct. It is a felony but you're not getting punished. People might think I'm being ungrateful, because there actually is a way to get the medication in Germany and not have consequences. But first of all, I don't want to be viewed as a criminal. I was scared and helpless and overwhelmed, not a malicious murderer. Secondly, I know what the service and consultations are like in the town where I live, because a friend of mine had to go through the same thing. She was traumatized. As soon as she said she didn't want the baby, they treated her like she was a horrible and cold women. She still isn't healed emotionally but that's not all. They didn't care to check on her afterwards. It was a medical abortion and unfortunately she belonged to the few that have residue left in the uterus that causes infection and could lead to sepsis. They even turned her away. It was just when she went to a doctor in a different state that they noticed her condition and she had surgery. In between was at least a month of pain and blood. I didn't want to go through that. And maybe if abortion was completely legal here, people wouldn't judge so hard. Maybe they would treat us in a professional way.
How did other people react to your abortion?
I didn't tell a lot of people. But the ones I told were mostly curious about the process and how I am dealing with it emotionally. I went to the hospital after my medical abortion, because I wanted to check whether it worked and if I needed a curettage. Going through with an abortion at home without going to the doctor and having consultations is illegal in Germany. So I told everybody at the hospital I had a miscarriage. Some of them felt sorry for me. And that made me feel so guilty because there are women who want the baby and need to go through the same procedure and the reason I was there was because I took those pills. But some of the doctors didn't really care or see me as a human being. They just said "Friday again, huh?" as apparently a lot of miscarriages happen on Fridays (for whatever reason). I thought that was cruel. Especially because I would have felt much worse if I actually wanted the baby and had have a miscarriage.