Letter

I was forced to abort my baby – and I’m not alone

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I want to share my experience, not to prove a point, but to combat a lie told by many pro-choicers. Coerced abortions are more common that Planned Parenthood would have us believe. Planned Parenthood is aware of these coerced abortions, yet offers no support, and performs the abortion while the pregnant woman lies there and cries, because that is all she is able to do.

Women in this situation do not get a choice. However, they are the ones left feeling guilt, anger, sadness, depression, and even suicidal thoughts.

Here is my story.

I am a 19-year-old San Diego college student. I moved in with my boyfriend a couple of months before I got pregnant. When I first suspected I was pregnant, my boyfriend told me that it would be okay. He assured me that he would not leave me, and we were still going to get married either way. He also told me that he would help me finish school when the baby arrived. However, he does have a very bad temper, and curses me out every time he gets upset, whether he’s upset with me or just taking something else out on me that happened with his career or schooling.

When I began to realize I was pregnant, he told me that if I were, I was going to get an abortion. However, I was taking oral contraceptives at the time, and assumed that could be the reason my period was late. I finally went to CVS to buy a pregnancy test. I took the test as soon as we got home, and it was positive. The first thing my boyfriend said was, “Call Planned Parenthood.”

I started to cry, and he began to yell. This time, there was no cursing involved. I always get very afraid when he begins to yell, and when I tried to offer up an alternative, he said no.

“It should be your choice, but -” He said that he was not “ready to be a father.” However, he was a father — the father of the baby I was carrying. He told me that his former lover had become pregnant as well, but had an abortion despite his wishes.

He made me call Planned Parenthood less than five minutes after finding out I was pregnant; I scheduled an appointment for one week later. This whole time, I felt more and more connected with my baby girl. My boyfriend told me that he would kick me out if I kept our baby, and I would have no place to live.

I called Planned Parenthood when I was able to get alone (to tell them the situation), and they told me that I would just have to tell him I didn’t want to do it. They did not care what would happen to me. I pleaded with them to work with me, just until I could find something to help me.

I asked them if they could do an ultrasound for me. I told them that if I could get an ultrasound and show it to my boyfriend – who is much older than me – he would not make me abort my baby. However, Planned Parenthood told me that they would do a free ultrasound before the abortion to confirm the age of the baby, but if I did not get the abortion, I would have to pay over $100. I did not have the money, and did not know anywhere to turn.

However, I did want to keep my baby. I grew so close to my baby, and I love her so much, even though she is no longer alive.

On the day of the abortion, the nurse knew my situation, but offered no help except for abortion. I cried, so helpless and alone, knowing my poor baby girl was about to be killed. The nurse just told me that they would give me a sedative before the abortion began. Still, I cried through the abortion.

Afterwards, all of my emotions just went away. I did not feel sad, angry, relieved, or happy. I was just emotionless and alone. My boyfriend picked me up after the abortion, because Planned Parenthood did not allow a patient to not have a ride home.

I have had depression and dreams of my little girl ever since. In my dreams, she has small slanted eyes, light brown skin, long fingers, and a very strong grip. In one dream, I’m sitting on the couch with my boyfriend and our baby, who I named Xianna. My boyfriend and I are staring down at her, and she is holding onto my fingers very tightly. I can’t help but to think that she was holding on to her mother, and trusting me to not let go.

Now, I have to live with this guilt for the rest of my life. I blame myself for the whole thing, and contemplated suicide for months after the abortion.

I have no support, and no one to talk to about it. So, no one knows about the experience. My boyfriend is happily going on with his usual routine. However, I’m sitting here a few days after my due date – which was Mother’s Day – and I think about how I was forced to give up on my own daughter. By the time my daughter would have been born, I had made enough money to be able to rent an apartment with a roommate and support Xianna – but I don’t have her.

Eleven of my friends just had their babies within the last three months, and a few more will have theirs very soon. I envy pregnant women, and have withdrawn myself from them all. I cannot be around pregnant women or children.

I’m sure there are many more women in this same situation or women that will be, and I want to make society aware of what happens. We are women capable of raising our children, just as other women are. Yet our voice has been taken away, along with our babies.

We are the silent many.

Please share this, and give a voice to women being coerced into killing their babies.

Editor’s Note: If you or anyone you know is in a similar situation as this guest contributor, and if you are being pressured or forced to have an abortion, please check out this article for help and resources.

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