Audrey's Story

It has been 21 years and I can still remember that very day. I was 19 years old. He was the first man I had sex with. And it was my first time.

The day my mother confronted me about the situation all I could say was, "Yes I think I'm pregnant." She asked me,"Well what are you going to do about it?" I had no idea. I was never allowed to make my own choices.

After saying good-bye to the boy I had loved I left his house feeling my soul leave my body. And I knew that soon I would not have a part of him with me too.

A few days went by and my mother took me to the doctors. I was so scared to be checked because I had never gone to a gynecologist before. My mother thought I was only a couple weeks along. When they called that night to tell me the results of the pregnancy test they told me I was 5 months pregnant. My mother was so upset. My father was very angry.

A few days later I was to go to the hospital. I was told that I would be induced and have to go through labor and delivery. The very morning of the abortion I lay in bed. I felt a flutter in my stomach. Once then a few more times. Not until I had my daughter 7 years later did I realize it was my baby moving. My mother took me took the hospital. They injected some chemical into my uterus. Then hours later I started the steps to labor and delivery.

I went through 12 hours of this. At about 8 p.m. my mother went home. It was at 12:03 a.m. on June 8th, 1977 that it was all over. 

The nurse was with me that's all. She said she had to go out of the room and she would be right back I guess now as I look back that was her was of allowing me to touch or look if I had too. There below me was something but I was so unsure. I never looked nor touched. I was afraid I would get into trouble. Then a few minutes later the nurse was there and she placed the tiny thing into a basin covered it and left. Another nurse came back in to get me together. I asked the nurse what sex it was but she said maybe it was best I didn't know.

And that was all. All over. Nothing said. NUMB.

I went home the next day. My father brought me home flowers from work. He said nothing. One day later I went through postpartum depression. I remember crying so hard. And that's when my dad said, "That's enough of this. I don't want to hear anymore of this." And that was the end. Or so everyone thought.

When I was 21 I married. I never told him of what happened. I was too ashamed. I thought if I told him he would hate me. I lived many years feeling this shame.

My first child was a girl. As she started to grow I thought about my experiences. And also when she becomes sexually active I want share this with her so she will make the right choices. So she will be careful. I have not told her yet she is only 13. But I'm sure the day will come. Anyway eventually I did share my story with my (Ex) husband. He always thought something happened. But he never asked. I still wonder if that is one of the reasons he left. I will never know. But I don't care anymore.

My mother made the choice not I. For many years I never forgave my mother. Not until after many years of anger and depression I met a wonderful therapist and she helped me with all the emotional stuff. What I ended up doing was calling the hospital where the abortion took place. I knew they had to have records of some sort. I explained to them why I needed the records. I had to bring closure on this. I went to the hospital and picked up the papers. As I drove down the street I glanced at the papers. There on the paper it said," Male fetus" Other medical information too. When I read that I broke down. That was when I put closure to the end of a mystery.

As I say I will be 40 this year. I was 19 when this happened. I am not proud of this. My mother made the choice. It wasn't me. She has said before that she will go to her grave guilty. As for me I survived this and I forgave her. Being the situation as it was. If I had to do this over again I really can't say what would have happened. I believe NO ONE has the right to choose but yourself. I will never do to my daughter what was done to me. And I pray that I never have to help my daughter make that decision.

Thank you for hearing my story.

March 1998

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What Audrey describes sounds like a saline abortion method. This method was used for second trimester abortions in the 1970's, but has since been replaced with the faster and safer D&E method.