Liz Price

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I had an abortion

1993 Australia (born in Australia)

My decision to end my pregnancy was very clear. I had no doubt that the decision was for the best. I remember feeling emotionally exhausted though, being awayf rom home and firends and family as the situation unfolded. The morning sickness was horrid, and started when I was still hiking in Africa. I remember the shame of vomiting in the sink in the airpoirt toilet and confiding to the woman next to me that I was pregnant. She glanced at my hands and saw no ring and walked out with a look of disgust. The sadness I felt afterward abortion was knowing that that the last time I had with my Grandfather was clouded by my "difficulties". I found that the hardest thing to get over. But these were the consequence of the unplanned pregnancy not of the abortion.

The abortion experience itself was okay. The Doctor who performed the procedure was known to me. When I was a University student I used to deliver pizzas to him! I remember thinking he looked like a kindly elf, dressed in his green surgery gown.

The pregnancy resulted from a one-off encounter with a man now referred to as "Carl the Impregnator". I had no desire to raise a child on my own.

Did the illegality of your abortion affect your feelings?

I had received some counselling from a worker with the british Pregnaancy Advisory Service prior to returning to Australia. She offered me great kindness, detailed infomration and a complete abscence of judgement. Returning to Australia, particulalry Queensalnd, to ahve the procedure down was a different story. The illegality of it under Queensland law did make me feel like I had to be very careful about who I told and how I told my story. It changed how the clinic recorded my reasons for ending the pregnancy, with them highlighting my concern that the anti-malarials I had been taking might have effected the fetus rather than the fact that I was sinlge and young and ill equiped to make a go of parenting. When only some sorts of abortions are deemed lawful it does alter how you tell your story and how you remember you story; it is like you have to let go of a little bit of your own truth.

How did other people react to your abortion?

Mixed. My close frineds were all very supportive as was my Aunt and Mum and my brothers. My Dad struggled with it a bit and there were other family members who knew I could never tell. Although I had my abortion in Australia, I was in England when I found out about the pregnancy and was so ill with morning sickness that I struggled to spend any quality time with my grand father. This was sad for me because it was the last time I ever saw him.

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