Of all pregnancies in the US each year, half are unintended. 40% of these unintended pregnancies end in abortion. One in 4 women in the U.S. will have an abortion by age 30.
(Guttmacher Institute, 2011)
If you, a friend, or a partner have had an abortion, you might know that it’s not always easy. It’s normal to have many confusing feelings after an abortion. The main reasons for choosing to have an abortion include:
- being worried or concerned for others
- not being financially ready to care for a child
- not being ready for a child when thinking about their goals in school or their job
- not wanting to raise a child on their own or being worried about how it will affect their relationship with their partner (Guttmacher Insitute, 2008)
Most women report feeling relief initially, but some may feel sadness, anger, or confusion. Some may feel nothing different and some may feel just like something is different. It’s also normal to have your emotions change from day to day or month to month about your experience. Your experience is your own unique journey. Your experience with abortion may be something that you have a hard time sharing with others, even your best friend or partner.
There are people you can talk to.
Exhale is a free and confidential national hotline that connects you with supportive people who will listen to your experience. You can share how you feel, how you don’t feel, what you think about, and whatever you need to say or do for your own personal care. Exhale isn’t only for those who have had an abortion, it’s for anyone – a partner, friend, or parent.
- Watch this video to see who will be on the other line: Exhale: After-Abortion Support.
As a heads up, this video is from a website that is raising money for the video to be aired.
If you are pregnant and considering your options, there are other people you can talk to. Backline offers pregnancy options counseling if you want to learn about what you can do when you’re pregnant. Whether you have questions about continuing the pregnancy and being a parent, or continuing the pregnancy and looking into adoption, or, if you aren’t ready for pregnancy, learning about abortion, you will have support that is free and confidential with Backline.
No matter where you are at, it’s important to keep in mind that you are going through a lot, physically and emotionally. Be sure to get plenty of rest, eat, and sleep when you need it. Talk to people you trust when you feel ready. Breathe, you have people there to support you.
Mei-Lani and the New Gen Crew
Reviewed by Andrea Raider, NP & Kohar Der Simonian, MD