I had my first abortion 27 years ago, when I was 18. I was pregnant, unmarried, scared, and uninformed. Uninformed regarding fetal development, and that I might suffer seven years later from anger, depression, suicidal thoughts, and emotional outbursts (a few of the many symptoms of post-abortion stress). When I went to the Fan Free Clinic, there was no mention of adoption or prenatal care options. Roe v. Wade had recently been passed. In the midst of a crisis, I felt I had no choice but to have an abortion.
After two more abortions in seven years, I felt apathetic. Again, I was in the midst of a crisis. Though married, my husband and I were students, and he said I must have an abortion. The two clinics I went to in Northern Virginia were sophisticated compared to the one here in Richmond, but I was never given any “choices” during the pre-abortion “counseling,” other than abortion.
The “uninformed” consent was an assault to my crisis pregnancies. Now, without any child to hold at age 45, I look back with much regret. Women need to be given those other choices to consider along with information on fetal development. They may then be able to choose adoption or carrying the baby to term and becoming a parent with the support of the baby’s father, family or friends.
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