Sabrina, early 30s, had two abortions in her early 20s.
“The guy I was dating at that time was a mess, and he was in no position to be a father then. We weren’t even in a relationship, so there was no way I was going to keep the baby. He did help me with the cost, because I couldn’t let my parents know. I think they would have disowned me if they knew.
It only hit me that I was actually terminating a life when we did the ultrasound. The baby was just a tiny dot on the screen. But I knew I wasn’t ready to be a mother, much less a single mother. Financially, emotionally, I just wasn’t ready.
Along the way, from the consultation to the mandatory counselling session right up to the day of the procedure itself, the people at the hospital kept asking if I was sure about this. It was frustrating, because I had already made up my mind.
I actually don’t remember a thing from the abortion. I was put under anaesthesia, and the next thing I knew, I was waking up in the recovery ward.
After the abortion, I stayed at my friend’s place because I didn’t want my parents to find out. I bled a lot after. I had to change my pad every hour. And it’s nothing like menstrual blood – it was a lot of fresh, red, blood.
Two months later, I actually went through early pregnancy symptoms, like nausea and fatigue. I was even lactating. It was very scary. I started writing letters to the baby I aborted, just to help me process what I had went through.
Eight months later, I got pregnant again. It was with the same guy, whom I was then in a proper relationship with. This time round, we actually discussed our options.
In the end, we decided to go for the abortion because I was graduating from university and already had job offers coming in. I was starting a new chapter in my life and wasn’t ready to settle down, especially not with my then-boyfriend. And I didn’t want a kid to be the reason why we stayed together. I didn’t want to deal with a divorce later, and having to fight for custody.
My experience with abortion was very lonely. There was no one to talk to, to help me process what was happening. A few friends that I spoke to didn’t react to the news well. They were like “What? Again?” I felt judged, and slut-shamed.
In hindsight, it would have been more helpful to talk to someone who had gone through an abortion before.The first few years were hard to deal with, but I am OK now. I’m able to talk about my experience now without any overwhelming emotions.
I actually love kids, and I do want to have kids eventually. But the circumstances weren’t right then – it was the wrong time, with the wrong guy.
Sometimes, these thoughts pop up in my head. Thoughts like, ‘Wow, if I had continued the pregnancy, I’d have a 10-year-old kid by now.’ There’s a bit of regret, but I know it’s something I can look forward to next time, with the right person.”