I had my first abortion because my mom told me it wasn't a baby yet and I had enlisted in the Navy and thought that was the only way I was going to be able to serve. During the abortion procedure I experienced a lot of pain and fear. Immediately after the abortion I felt a deep sense of denial set upon me. As time went on after the abortion I felt and experienced a sense of relief and then indifference.
I joined the Navy and was very promiscuous. And eventually became pregnant again. I was not sure who the father was and therefore felt that I could not keep the child. Also, I was told that I would be discharged by the Navy because I was not married. When I went to the abortion clinic in Washington D.C., I was surrounded by a lot of really upset women. I was extremely upset and ashamed. I felt I should have known better than to get pregnant again when I was not prepared to become a parent. No one spoke to me about the option of adoption. When I was lying on the table I told the nurse and the doctor that I was really nervous about this. The nurse told me to calm down and that it would be over in a few minutes. I told the doctor the instruments seemed dirty and maybe we shouldn't do this. He said "They're cleaner than you are". I felt as horrible and dirty as when I was gang raped in my teens.
I found help and forgiveness through the support of my best friend who also regretted her abortions. She introduced me to a crisis pregnancy center after I fell into a depression after my second divorce. There I learned of Project Rachel and Silent No More. It took me almost five years to make a retreat. I started this registration several times in the five years since I started working for the CPC and shared my story with the clients and therefore, have not been silent but have longed to feel allied with women who have had similar experiences.
Thank you for this opportunity to share my story.