“I Came Out Confident That I Did The Right Thing”: Women On The Decision To Have An Abortion

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“I Came Out Confident That I Did The Right Thing”: Women On The Decision To Have An Abortion
“I Came Out Confident That I Did The Right Thing”: Women On The Decision To Have An Abortion

Video: “I Came Out Confident That I Did The Right Thing”: Women On The Decision To Have An Abortion

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Video: Watch: TODAY All Day - September 25 2023, January

Although reproductive rights are enshrined in the Constitution of the Russian Federation, there is more and more talk that the right to abortion should be limited, for example, remove this service from the CHI system. Recently, the governor of the Penza region ordered officials to discourage women from abortion and find out the reasons for their decision. In fact, the reasons for terminating a pregnancy can be very different - from a simple unwillingness to have children or health problems to a lack of resources and opportunities to raise them. We spoke with several women who had an abortion about their choice - why they made this decision and what happened after.

Interview: Elizaveta Lyubavina




I had two abortions. Paradoxically, at the age of sixteen, doctors diagnosed me with polycystic ovary syndrome and said that the chances of getting pregnant were minimal. However, having children was never my goal.

Once - I was twenty - the condom broke. On the advice of my friends, I took emergency contraception, although I was sure that I was infertile. Even a month later, having noticed nausea and causeless irritation, for a long time she did not associate this with pregnancy. A friend offered to do a test when I vomited after breakfast.

I was confused, but I realized that I was not ready to leave the child - my partner and I were both students. Upon learning of the pregnancy, he ignored me for a week. I decided to have an abortion, after which he began to pester me with calls, asking "not to kill his child." At the same time, I did not receive any specific offers or help from him - obviously, he was just worried about his genetic makeup.

I went to a private clinic where I had a medical abortion. After taking the pill, I felt a pulling pain in the lower back - no stronger than during menstruation. When the pain came to a head, a piece of mucus came out of me. That was the end of it.

Two years later, I met my future husband. A month after the wedding, she became pregnant again, although she used a spiral - at some point she shifted. We were already talking about the baby, so we decided to leave the pregnancy.

I chose a paid birth, but everything went horribly. I was forty-two weeks pregnant, but the contractions never started. The doctors were proud that in their clinic everyone gave birth “on their own” and went for a cesarean section only when the child's heart rate began to drop. I was twenty-four years old - the doctors reproached that at that age I could not give birth, they accused me of the child's condition: twenty-five minutes after giving birth, the daughter stopped breathing on her own. Having not yet examined the child, the doctors said that the case was serious and it was not known "whether the child will be all right with his head." The pediatrician and neurologist, whom we were then examined, could not understand why the obstetricians delayed the labor so much - it is obvious that the cesarean section had to be done much earlier. But the doctors were not embarrassed by either my condition, or the terrible pain, or the fact that I lost consciousness.

All this resulted in postpartum depression. But literally four months after giving birth, I got pregnant again - I used oral contraception, but probably missed one or more pills amid worries. Upon learning of the new pregnancy, I was horrified. Now my daughter has no health problems, but then I was sure that she was seriously ill. In addition, having gone through a difficult birth, I was not ready to go for it a second time.

I no longer had the opportunity to go to a private clinic, and in a state one I had to fight for the right to have an abortion. The doctors were dragging their feet: first they "lost" my tests, then they found a candida - when I retaken the test at a paid clinic, no fungus was found. During this time, the seam began to diverge, but this did not bother the doctor at all. She tried to convince that childbirth after cesarean is safer than abortion.On the ultrasound, I did not specifically look at the screen, but the doctor persistently repeated: "You do not want to look, because you understand what you are doing."

Only the surgeon who performed the abortion behaved professionally: he performed the operation perfectly, gave competent recommendations and did not show the slightest condemnation. I left the hospital absolutely confident that I had done the right thing. I already have a child whom I love. I was not ready for the second one, also at the cost of my health.

Life with my husband did not work out. Tired of lack of money and his drunkenness, I left him when the child was three years old. I think that I would not have done this with two children: I simply would not have been able to feed them. Now, in order to raise my daughter and rent a house, I combine several jobs. I do not receive alimony from my ex-husband - he said in plain text that he would not do it. Trying to recover them in court is also pointless: all his property is registered with his mother, he does not go abroad anyway.

After the second abortion and divorce, I reviewed my social circle. Many friends began to show uninvited pity, asking if I had this child in my dreams at night and how I was able to decide. Others advised me to go to church, although I am not a believer.

Previously, such stories surprised me, because doctors cannot refuse an abortion procedure. In fact, I am far from the only one, my roommate experienced the same.



When I was seventeen I got pregnant. Not everyone is able to talk about sexuality, their needs and safety: there is not enough sex education. It happened to me too - when I tried to discuss contraception with a partner, I got the classic answer: "Don't worry, I can control myself." Unfortunately, I did not resist and insist on my own.

We practiced coitus interruptus. The risk of getting pregnant in such cases is high: even if ejaculation does not occur directly in the vagina, some of the sperm can always get there. So I got pregnant.

I made the decision to have an abortion myself. I received a referral from the gynecologist to the center, where I could do it for free - I could not tell my mother or grandmother about what had happened, and I did not have my own money. Nevertheless, a couple of days before the operation, my mother intuitively felt something - but I did not receive emotional support from her. The young man behaved childishly: he said that “killing children is a sin”, but at the same time he did not offer anything concrete. For some time we did not communicate, but a month later I got in touch with him again - such a relationship can hardly be called calm. Having learned about this, my mother asked only one thing - if I had enough "brains to protect myself at least this time."

For a long time, I did not discuss this story with anyone. I mentioned abortion only to convince men to use a condom. I used to think that buying condoms was the responsibility of men, and I myself was embarrassed to go to the pharmacy for them. Now I am more attentive to contraception.

When I had an abortion, I was very lucky with the doctors, there was not a drop of condemnation in their words. Nevertheless, it became a traumatic experience, it is not an ordinary procedure that passes without a trace. I was very ashamed of him, I felt “flawed” and “spoiled”. It seemed to me that this does not happen with the "good girls". Then I was a believer, which only intensified my feelings.

I sincerely believed that abortion is murder, and I prayed to God that the pregnancy would be false, and the test result would be a malfunction in the hormonal background. It seemed to me that the child feels everything - then I did not think that in the early stages the nervous system has not yet been formed in the embryo. I felt I was able to give life, but I don't. Abortion, on the other hand, was the first situation that made me doubt my faith: I realized that no one would come to the rescue, and the problem would have to be solved by myself.

After the abortion, I felt a strong desire to adopt a child - perhaps this was how I tried to get rid of my guilt.Over time, I realized that I did not have enough resources for this. I do not understand those who can have an abortion and forget - it is better to think about contraception in advance. Until now, I could not fully accept myself: there was very little emotional intimacy in our family, which is why I constantly sought warmth even in unhealthy relationships. Now I understand that both partners should be responsible and take care of each other's health.




I chose oral contraception and was confident in its reliability - I attributed the delay to other reasons. I got worried when eating behavior changed a lot: I began to sweep away everything that was in the refrigerator. Then I did a pregnancy test. The result was shocking. My husband and I already have two children, a girl and a boy, and we are not planning a third.

My husband supported me. In Krasnokamsk, where I live, pro-life moods are strong: in the consultation they began to dissuade me, the nurse called the abortion a murder. There were posters in the corridors, such as "Mom, don't kill me!" Then I decided to go to a private clinic in a nearby town, where I made a medication interruption. I was given a few days to think it over, but I refused them - the decision was made.

The procedure was no more painful than menstruation. When it was over, I experienced great relief. I am tired of an all-consuming life, I am not ready for a third child either mentally or physically, because pregnancy is a very big load on the body. The children have just grown up, and I can finally devote more time to myself. For example, I resumed my studies: due to an early pregnancy I had to leave college, now I am studying banking again.

I didn’t tell anyone about the abortion except my husband: I knew that I would meet condemnation, and I didn’t need extra nerves and a spoiled mood.



I had an abortion at twenty-three. When the doctors diagnosed infertility, it became easier to relate to contraception: I did not doubt the health of my permanent partner, the risk of pregnancy also ceased to bother me. However, the question of childbearing was not in front of me. I was brought up with different attitudes: first, education and career, and only then the family.

The diagnosis turned out to be wrong, although five doctors said that I could not get pregnant naturally. I discovered pregnancy quite late: oddly enough, it did not manifest itself physiologically, but very strongly - in emotions. I noticed that I felt depressed, but at the same time - no toxicosis, no reaction to smells, no fatigue. The delay was attributed to climate change, my partner and I had just returned from an exotic country. I did a pregnancy test only when my chest began to hurt at night. When I found out that I was pregnant with twins and that I was in my seventh week, I was shocked.

I told my partner (now my husband) unequivocally that I didn’t want to keep the pregnancy. He supported my decision. He helped: accompanied me to the clinic, took the weekend to be with me, supported me financially. Relatives - my mother and friends - were also on my side. Everything indicated that this was the right decision: we did not want to become parents, we did not have our own home, and besides, I did not lead a healthy lifestyle at the time of pregnancy.

At first, the doctor did not try to dissuade me, but when she found out that I had a negative Rh factor, she suggested that it was easier to give birth. There is a common misconception that Rh negative women should not have an abortion during their first pregnancy. This is actually a solvable problem.

I had a paid medical abortion: I felt nausea, pain in the lower abdomen, there was heavy bleeding, and then it was all over. Everything went well, I was relieved. But after two weeks, I began to be overcome by melancholy and sometimes suicidal thoughts. At first I thought it was a psychological trauma after an abortion, which is commonly called "post-abortion syndrome."

In fact, this stressful situation helped uncover a deeper problem.Together with a psychologist and psychiatrist, I realized that I always reacted sharply and emotionally - just during pregnancy and after an abortion, the reactions reached their climax. Then I was faced with a depressive state and experienced several panic attacks. However, this had happened before, but I preferred to attribute everything to "difficult character", "hysteria" and even "peculiarities of female behavior."

The doctor diagnosed borderline personality disorder. He explained that there is no post-abortion syndrome. There is a reaction to public pressure: by claiming that “abortion is murder”, prolifers impose guilt on the woman. Sometimes, as happened to me, psychological problems aggravated by stress are mistaken for post-abortion syndrome. I am grateful for this situation, it pushed me to solve the problem. I have no regrets: children should only be welcome.




I had an abortion sixteen years ago. There was a terrible lack of sexuality education at that time: there was no sex education in schools, things were no better with open sources. In the Altai Territory, where I grew up, there were problems with the Internet. We didn't use much protection, and one day I got pregnant.

The relationship went to the wedding, but as soon as I became pregnant, the partner completely disclaimed responsibility, said: "Do what you want." I did not expect such a reaction at all.

I did not dream of motherhood, but then I wanted this child - conception seemed to me a miracle. But still I decided to have an abortion: I was twenty years old, there was still a university course ahead, and I didn't want to hang the child on my parents. In addition, I realized that if I give birth to a child and stay with a partner, this marriage will not be happy. I have always been a proponent of family planning: too often unwanted children become scapegoats, whom parents blame for ruining their lives. I didn't want that, after all, children should be welcome. I decided that abortion is the minimum harm for everyone.

Early on, I had a vacuum abortion at a government clinic. The procedure was terrible. It began with an injection of novocaine into the cervix, which is already unpleasant in itself. But the anesthesia worked very weakly, it hurt. My neck did not open, and the next day I had to go to bed for cleaning.

But it was even harder to face the young man's devil-may-care attitude. On the day of the abortion, he rushed me to the antenatal clinic, and the next he did not go with me to clean, although he promised. Since we had a separate budget, we agreed that we would divide the amount for an abortion by two. But the next day, he asked me to return part of it back to buy tickets home - after my cleaning, he was going to go to his parents. As a result, he did not go to the clinic with me: he took tickets for the earliest bus to his native village, explaining that the next ones were less comfortable.

I could no longer trust him. If I had left the child, it would have been worse: all this would have been revealed much later, and in the decree I would have also ended up depending on him. I have never regretted that I decided to have an abortion, but the pain of the betrayal remained. True, since then I have been more attentive to people.

Now I have a child whom my husband and I could not conceive for a long time - we turned to assisted reproductive technologies. As it turned out, the problem with conception was of a psychological nature. Doctors discovered the immunological factor of infertility, but the reason lay in psychosomatics - I think negative experience played a role here.



I had my first abortion a long time ago, back in the days of the USSR: I got pregnant at a New Year's party when I was in my first year at university. I hid pregnancy for a long time from my mother, until at the eighth week she herself suspected that something was wrong. I had to confess. It turned out that my mother took it normally - she herself found herself in a similar situation. Mom took me by the hand and took me to the antenatal clinic to get a referral for an abortion. The gynecologist behaved correctly and did not discourage abortion.

Before the abortion, I was very worried. It was also frightening that the doctor was a man. The roommates in the ward reassured them: it was not the first time they had an abortion and they knew the doctor who was supposed to perform the operation well. As it turned out, he was praised for a reason - the operation went very smoothly and delicately. It cannot be said that she was painless (after all, the abortion was performed under local anesthesia), but tolerable.

I had the second abortion at the same doctor and no longer worried. After graduating from the university, she gave birth to two desired children - no complications with conception and childbirth arose. If the pregnancy was not desired, it is better to have an abortion - I do not regret my decisions.

Photos: Zebra Finch - stock.adobe.com

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