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So what were my options? Force my grief stricken self through 9 months of pregnancy? Raise a child I was unfit to care for, or give the baby up? Anti-choice advocates are always so quick to suggest adoption, as if that is somehow an easy option. I have seen first hand the amount of guilt, longing and pain that comes from giving up a child; my very catholic mother had a daughter when she was 16-years-old, and she put the baby up for adoption. I knew that just wasn’t an option for me, so I scheduled an appointment and spent the next two and half weeks nauseous and nervous, but never once unsure of my decision.

When you have a pill abortion, you are basically forcing your uterus to contract repeatedly to expel the embryo, along with all its other contents. So what exactly does that entail? Sitting over the toilet for hours, pushing out blood clots the size of lemons. Some so large I had to reach up inside myself to pull them out. It means excruciating cramps and pain, far worse than any period symptoms I’ve ever had. Bleeding through pads that should last eight hours in 45 minutes. I was dizzy, sickly, and had a pounding headache. All of this lasted for three solid days.

And then came the shame.

But it didn’t come from within, it was the shame that society forces upon us when we commit to this act. I don’t actually feel any guilt about my abortion. It was the right choice for me and I know that. But I felt all this guilt for not feeling guilty; I felt like it made me a bad person if I didn’t feel remorse, even though there was no other option for me.

(l.)

#womensstories: abortion was my only choice -@msmagazine