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From A Counsellor’s Diary : Battling The Guilt Of An Abortion

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From A Counsellor’s Diary : Battling The Guilt Of An Abortion

Beyond Guilt: Finding Support After an Abortion

It was 2017, I remember the day very clearly. It had been a week since my cycle was due but there was no sign of it. As someone who experienced regular cycles, this was shocking, to say the least. My husband and I had just been married for over a year and things were going great. Both of us had just taken up new jobs. I knew the possibilities, but at that time I couldn’t help but wonder if it was the right decision.

As weeks passed by, I knew something was not right and so my husband and I decided to take up a pregnancy test. It was just what we had expected, the test was positive. I was about 2 months pregnant. Apart from me felt elated. As a woman, a part of me always wanted to become a mother but then, I was newly married and came from not a very well-to-do family.

“How were we to support a child when we were just getting back on our feet? I knew something had to be done, but I just could not make up my mind, and how could I?”

There were so many feelings and emotions and questions running through my mind, both options flashed before me. I knew I had to do the right thing, but how was I to decide what the right thing to do was being in that situation? My husband and I sat down to talk about it and after some amount of consideration, we felt that we just were not ready to have a baby yet. We had to be settled at least a bit more to fully be able to provide for our baby. After much deliberation, we discussed the matter with our in-laws who seemed to agree with us. It had to be the right thing, for us and our unborn child. So, we fixed an appointment with the doctor and got an abortion.

The months after getting the abortion were very stressful for me. I was overcome with the feeling of grief and guilt for having let down my unborn child. What if I couldn’t get pregnant again? I felt a feeling of unworthiness. Although the guilt seemed to get lost as the days went by, it all came back to me 2 years later. My husband and I were settled and we decided it was finally time to start a family. This time, however, it was not that easy. We tried over and over again for months but for some reason, we just could not.

“At this point, I could not help but wonder if it was me who had brought this upon myself. Why was I unable to conceive? All I wanted was to try to get pregnant, but why was I not blessed with that ability?”

I started feeling as if I had rejected the advances and offers of fate 2 years ago and now luck was not in my corner. I felt an overwhelming sense of grief and could not help but blame myself. The guilt got so bad it started impacting my relationship with my husband. It got so bad to the extent where I started picturing my unborn child’s eyes and nose.

I knew I had to get my life on track and I reached out to Fertility Dost to begin my counseling sessions where I was reassured that none of this was my fault and I only did what was best for everyone in the family. The journey to recovery is hard and difficult, but I remind myself at every moment that I am enough and I am ever so grateful to have such a supportive and loving family and with this hope, I continue to believe that I will start a family soon.

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Author’s Note

This is the story of an actual couple that had come to me. It was absolutely heartbreaking to see the woman blame herself for something that was of no fault of her doing. This sort of guilt is unfortunately common among women who have had abortions due to widespread stigma and I am glad to be working to help make a change, a little bit at a go. Watching her take the leap to progress was truly a redeeming moment for my journey as an expert. I am sure that her dedication and cooperation will pay off. If you ever feel the guilt after an abortion or you’re confused, feel free to connect with me. I’d be more than happy to help in the tiniest way possible.

About The Author

Dr. Purnima Sood

Purnima Sood, Community Manager, Fertility Dost Life Coach and Certified Adoption Counsellor.

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