Ella

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I was so scared but it was right and I know deep in my heart now.

2014 New Zealand

While I was pregnant I felt a great deal of things but, because of the length of the process and being so sure when it happened, I knew I'd made the right decision. Right now it's one week on and things have been a bit up and down but on the whole I am feeling relieved, and happy to make these decisions later on in life.

I choose a medically induced abortion. I wanted to do this because it was at home where it was private and I felt safe. The most frightening time was putting the pills in. I had to do that myself and I was shaking so much I didn't think I could. I did it though and I knew there was no going back. The contractions got progressively more painful and I started bleeding almost straight away. I locked myself in the bathroom as I neared the time I was going to pass the pregnancy. This was stupid in retrospect but all I could think about was the shame. Unfortunately I had a reaction to the painkiller meds or something like that and had to call my partner in because I was having blurred vision and thought I was going to hemorrhage. My partner called the hospital while this was happening but everything was going to be okay. I didn't realise with all the pain and dizzying effects of the reaction when I passed the pregnancy. I had wanted to bury its remains, but I just didn't know when it happened. Eventually I realised the contractions were decreasing but I was too exhausted to tell my partner. I would lie on my knees to rest on the relief sides of the contractions until the pain started again. Eventually I got up enough energy to tell my partner I was okay, and to move to the bed. I was so exhausted afterwards. I slept for a few hours. I was most suprised by feelings of immediate relief, and *knowing* straight away I wasn't pregnant anymore.

Did the illegality of your abortion affect your feelings?

Yes, even though it was legal I had to go through many appointments and referrals. Every time I had to explain and defend my reasons for wanting this. It was hard but it could have been so much worse. I was so relieved that the hospital and clinic were so supportive, kind, and understanding. I couldn't help thinking how much worse it could have been for me.

How did other people react to your abortion?

I only told my mum and my current partner and I was four weeks in before I told anyone. I was scared to tell them at all I just thought I could do it all myself. But their reactions were beautiful and so unexpected. They treated me with so much love and were towers of strength throughout the entire process.

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