Many years ago I had to make a decision that I think about often. I was 16 years old and had just been through one of the most polarizing
moments of my life I had just been at the butt of a shotgun in a robbery in my first job. I was dealing with many things in my teen years. My parents messy and confusing divorce, my struggle making and keeping friends, my struggle with my emotions and always feeling like the odd one out.
I was also trying to garner attention from anyone. I was drinking alcohol to forget the pain and added to the alcohol I was smoking marijuana and if there was a new way to dull the pain I was easily swept up in it.
On this occasion a couple of friends of mine were spending the weekend with some older new male friends at my home as my home was almost always empty over the weekend with mum dating and my siblings spending the weekend with my dad and his wife and my step sisters.
The afternoon started with bad food like Hungry Jacks and swimming in the pool. The drinking games were a challenge and we were all dancing around, listening to loud music, screaming running amok. As the evening continued most of us had a least vomited once or twice, by now I was smoking like a chimney and people were finding comfy spots all over the house to sleep off the gallons of alcohol we had consumed. Around this time in my drunken haze I had buddied up with a guy that was the older brother of one of my closer friends at school. I would probably say he was my best friend and I liked him immensely.
Why I would fool around in drunken stupor with this guy I really didn’t know. We fooled around in the pool and the made our way to my room and although there were bunks they were not used. This was the night that brought me to this decision that is still a big part of my life.
3 weeks after this drinking weekend I was sick and at a doctor’s appointment I find out I am pregnant and now had so many different things going through my head. I had to call my mum as I had hoped she was going to be the reasoning voice I needed. Did I have to advise the poor fella who was just in it for a good time. I didn’t want my dad to know.
The next week went fast, so many decision were made, so many adult conversations were had and in this week I grew up and never got to be the young fun 16 year old ever again.
The fella was surprising, he said he would support me with whatever decision I made. Mum was worried about what to do but she was much stronger than I gave her credit for. My dad and I don’t have a good relationship so when he found out his first instinct was to hold me by the throat a foot off the ground and then verbally abuse me about what a waste of my life, what a disappointment I was and his utter repulsion at my carelessness.
I was now positive that an abortion was what I had to do. If I wanted to make the most of my young life this was the right decision.
I had to make this decision again in my life this time it was harder to make I had just had my second daughter she was about 3 months old and I was hoping I wasn’t pregnant again. I had spent the whole second pregnancy on medication for my depression as I hadn’t been diagnosed with bipolar disorder. I was emotionally all over the shop I discussed with my partner my fear that I would end up over the edge with another small young child. We both agreed it was the right way to go to keep the family ok and keep me safe.
Initially I felt so much relief that early on it is easy to move forward and I my desire to get back to my life came hard and fast. I didn’t share with many and it became our new deep dark family secret. It was only my partner and I that knew about this abortion. But with this one the emotions were huge I was distressed and raw and the amount of guilt I felt grew and grew with each day. I was angry, anxious, depressed, stressed, numb and empty.
I still struggle with all the emotions more so with my angry bipolar self, having the roller-coaster of bipolar and the madness in my frustrated sad mind there are times when I argue that I made the wrong decision and I yell at myself that I was strong enough to cope. Having to suffer in silence and alone doesn’t help resolve my feelings doesn’t help me understand my grief.
I sometimes look at my children and think “Hey” 2 more kids wouldn’t be too much harder. I shed a tear when I read an article about abortion and the sadness expressed in the article. Pro Choice rally’s on the TV listening to the debate makes me angry that I didn’t have this info to tap into when I had the struggle.
I will never forget what decisions I made or how hard they were to make. They will always be in my heart.