Colleen's Story

I am 38 years old and just landed my dream job after staying home for several years with my son. In the week before I began my job, my husband and I must have miscalculated. So after being at my job for a couple weeks, I discovered I was pregnant.  My first pregnancy was an accident and I have never regretted having my son and enjoying my time with him. However, getting back into my career had been very difficult. I did not like how a pregnancy would be perceived at work, right after landing the job. Also, the idea of balancing everything sent me into a deep depression.  My husband was beyond supportive, in whatever decision I made.

So, I researched my options and decided to try the medical abortion - via pill - and made an appointment at Planned Parenthood.  I had to drive over an hour and a half because there are no clinics in our county any more. When I arrived there were protesters and I thought it would be really upsetting to walk past them - but I actually found it offensive to be harassed. There were so many people waiting in the waiting room that it took almost three hours before they did the ultrasound.  They sent me back to the waiting room to be called again. I walkout out and called my husband and told him that I couldn't stand waiting there and I had him look up how big the fetus was.  He said it was about the size of a grain of rice. We decided on the phone that we would keep it.

I thought I would feel relieved, but the next week I became very depressed.  Also, physically I was exhausted and felt terrible.  The more I thought about it, the more time I spent researching options. I called a few other clinics and asked how long I would have to be there and more about the procedures. One receptionist asked my why I wanted to use the pill and I said that I didn't want to remember a procedure and that it seemed more like a miscarriage. She mentioned that I might want to do the procedure with twilight sedation, because the pill could happen at anytime - even at work and that it often involved hours of painful cramping.

At this time, I finally decided to talk to a friend who I thought would not be judgmental. Though it was a difficult topic to discuss, I found that my friend was supportive and had actually had the procedure with twilight sedation. She mentioned that it was not unpleasant at all.  I still had fear that I would remember the procedure.  But I found a small, private clinic that was actually less expensive than Planned Parenthood and made an appointment.

That morning, we arranged for my son to stay with my parents and my husband drove me over.  There were protesters outside, but we rushed past them. This time I was sure and the waiting room was not packed, so I was with the doctor in about an hour. I told him about my concerns of remembering the procedure, he did the ultrasound - I didn't watch (either time) - and administered the sedative.  The next thing I remembered, someone was helping me to the car. We drove home and I felt a great deal of relief.  I was sure since I had previously had a child that I would feel some sort of regret, but I have not felt bad at all.  The only thing that bothers me is that there is someone we know who is due about the same time I would have been.  I don't think I will be about to make that trip to the hospital.  I have held babies since then, but I don't want to hold one that would be the same age.

There are days that I think about getting pregnant sometime in the future. I am not sure that I am through having children, but I want to make that decision beforehand - not have it forced on me.


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An Abortion Doula provides support to women who are choosing to terminate their pregnancies or have miscarried or experienced fetal loss. Doulas stay with their clients throughout their procedures, as well as part of the recovery period, and remain in touch with their clients as they desire thereafter.