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Hi, I'm 17 years old (18 in Sept.) & is scheduled to have an surgical abortion on 3/13/12. Every part of me wants to keep my baby. I am 11 wks & already feel like I have a great emotional bond. I've read countless stories about women who regret their decision & I have no doubt in my mind I will too. I'm scared about how I will be able to maintain my mental health. I already have break downs & attempted to kill myself. These actions are way out of the norm for me. I never had a problem with suicide until now. I am with the father who is 19 (20 in July) & he doesn't want the baby. He feels that we are not ready financially, which I agree, but it doesn't make having an abortion any easier. Me & him feel two different ways which is probably normal since I'm the one carrying the baby & went through the morning sickness, headaches, nausea, mood swings etc. I'm just very scared & ashamed of the decision I might make. I haven't been able to tell anyone. Just a friend who isn't much help since she hasn't experienced this.

I just want to know I'm not alone & if there is anyone out there who got through their abortion despite feeling emotionally unstable. 

Does counseling really work?
Any advice is greatly appreciated. 

Thank you in advance.

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Hi MissingYou,

I'm a mother of one, but could have been a mother of three. I had my boy when I was 24 (36 now) and at the time, I was given the ultimatum by my partner of being a single-mother or having an abortion- I chose my boy; he chose an 18 year old girl.

I've never regretted that decision.

However, I experienced quite severe mental health problems after my son was born. I developed post-natal depression and less than a year later, I was spiralling out of control and ended up sleeping with an ex from years before. That once resulted in yet another unplanned pregnancy. This man's attitude was the same as my son's fathers- get rid. Yet he didn't offer any 'rewards'- he made it clear that I was a fling and nothing more, and that he wouldn't support his child in any way, if I chose to go through with the pregnancy.

I had no home of my own- me and my son were living in one room at my mothers house. I had a dead-end job, that was barely able to keep me off of benefits and every day, I was contemplating suicide and/or running away. I was screwed-up- there was no way I could bring a child in to my life. So I terminated at 10 weeks.

To say there were no emotional consequences would be a lie. I cried straight after the event and even attempted to excuse my behaviour to the post-op nurse. For weeks afterwards, I cried; felt guilty and tried to concoct ways of punishing myself.

Then I found myself in the same position 3 years later.

In the months after the 1st abortion, my mental health had dipped; I'd started treatment and subsequently, managed to turn my life around. However, it wasn't to last and I experienced another mental breakdown. I lost my job and our home, and had to move back in to my mum's house.

In the months leading up to the 2nd abortion, I was starting to pull my life together. I had started work, had gone back to college to complete my high school exams and was being signed off of my psychologist. It was through work that I met someone and we ended up having a short lived relationship. We had only sex once in the time we were seeing each other. Two days afterwards, he texted me to say that he was moving to Liverpool (a good few hundred miles away) and wasn't planning on coming back.

When I found out I was pregnant, I didn't tell him. There was a complication with our relationship that ensured he probably wouldn't stick around to support us- he was only 18 years old (I was 28). He had his whole life ahead of him and although, I doubt he would have told me to "Get rid"- I couldn't trap him by having a baby. I went through with a termination at 8 weeks and when he got in touch 6 months later, I told him what had happened. He was apologetic and told me that despite my fears, things would have been different with him. To this day, I believe him- I honestly believe that he would have tried to be a good dad, unlike my son's father- and I wish I had told discussed it with him.

Both abortions have had their lasting effects. Every year around the 'anniversery's'- I go through a depressive couple of weeks. I think about how old they would be (7 and 9 years old this year) and whether they would have been boys or girls. I haven't named them and I don't have fixed ideas about how they would have looked/names, etc. Yet I do wonder how my life would have turned out, if I had become a single mother of three.

In the past 7 years, my life has changed quite dramatically. I'm now university educated with a good job, a home of my own and my mental health issues are controlled. With three children, I don't know if I could have said the same thing.

Therefore- I may hurt, cry and feel guilt now and then, but I don't regret what I did.

However, I chose to do it. Both times, I knew that I couldn't deal with the consequences of having a child. You, on other hand, feel as if you are being forced to make the decission. You have to choose your boyfriend or your baby.

So it depends on whether you think HE's worth it. 

In truth, you will cope with single-motherhood. Or at least, you will learn to cope. Yet having a baby and being a single-parent is bloody hard work and it takes a lot of strength, determination and tears to get through it. It's worth every moment, but some days you don't always see the silver lining in the stormy clouds.

However, you will probably also cope with the after-guilt of abortion Even though you'll most likely feel a tremendous guilt and loss, at first- it lessens as the years go by.

I do advise getting some couselling, if you decide to go through with a termination. Your partner may not want to talk about it, but you might, and it's good to be able to talk things through with a someone who isn't going to judge.

Good luck with whatever you decide. 

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You already are suffering and know it is not for you. Reach out for help. There are places that can help you to have your baby.

Please do not think you can do this and then go for counseling and that will be it. That is not true, you remember for the rest of your life even if you get healing.

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