“I found out I was pregnant when my husband and I were on a holiday abroad, about a year ago. I suspected it when my period was very delayed. He suggested that we wait until we get back home to test, but I insisted on knowing right away. We had already talked about what we would do if such a situation ever arose, and both knew that we were not ready for a child either mentally or financially.
As soon as we reached home, I made an appointment with a gynaecologist for the next day. Accompanied by my husband, I got an ultrasound and was told to take the pills that very day or else it would have to be a surgical procedure.
The bleeding was heavy, but not as painful and scary as I imagined it would be. It also didn’t affect me very much emotionally, rather it was annoying that I had to go through it. What left an impression on me was how intimidating/humiliating clinics can be. Everyone at the gynaecologist’s office, from the receptionist to the chemist to other random staff, knew exactly what I was there for. And if this is how I felt at a relatively posh clinic, when clearly accompanied by my supportive husband — what if I had been a young unmarried girl? How would it feel to give away my Aadhaar details if I was getting it done secretly? But then I look at other places, even so-called first-world countries, and feel grateful from the bottom of my heart that I didn’t have to worry about the abortion being illegal. I can’t imagine what it would be like to not have the option to make that choice.
I only wish I could have freely talked to other people about it. No one knows apart from my husband. A few weeks ago, I visited the city I grew up in and caught up with some girlfriends after ages. As we were chatting, one of them shared how she recently had a pregnancy scare and had been terrified. I was debating whether I should tell them about my abortion or not, but the moment passed and I let it go. I wish I hadn’t! I hope one day we can all talk freely about abortions.”
My Abortion Story is a crowdsourced project in partnership with Mybodymychoiceindia campaign. It hopes to provide a platform for people to share their experiences with abortion in their own words. There is so much discourse around right and wrong but little about people’s experiences. Through My Abortion Story, we are hoping we can address this gap by bringing all kinds of personal narratives to life.