In my late twenties I fell pregnant, it was unplanned and unexpected. I was in a long-term relationship; however, my partner told me that if I went ahead with the pregnancy, then we didn’t have a future. It wasn’t what he wanted or how he saw his life working out. I simply didn’t feel strong enough to go this alone, so I had an abortion.
Pretty quickly life started falling apart, I deeply regretted my decision. At that time a lot of my friends were starting their own families. But I couldn’t enjoy that time with them. I couldn’t face seeing babies; it was just too upsetting, so I avoided seeing friends and family. I hurt so deeply that I couldn’t even watch a TV programme if a baby was featured, I had to switch off, or I would sit and sob. I felt wounded and guilty and eventually the tears became depression. I had isolated myself, I felt ashamed and broken and I had no one to talk to. My relationship suffered hugely too. There was no intimacy or closeness, we barely talked and spent a lot of time apart.
This continued and I knew, about three years after the abortion, that I needed help. I was in a really dark place and was having suicidal thoughts.
I started looking for help and came across The Haven via a Google search and made contact with one of their advisors. It was a struggle to go in the early months, painful to recount the journey I had been on so far, especially as I felt so guilty. However, my advisor started to walk that journey with me. She took me through the ‘Time to Heal’ sessions and gradually I began to heal. It was painful, and hard; on many occasions I didn’t want to go; I would cancel or re-schedule, not wanting to face the vast emotions that the sessions were exposing. But, throughout, my advisor took me gently through a process I now know I had to go through to heal.After a number of sessions, and having made a lot of progress, I felt it was time to stop, that I was ready to face the world again. My advisor let me know that it was fine to come back if I needed to talk more, and it helped that I knew she was there. A few years later, when my relationship finally broke down, I turned to The Haven again as there was still unresolved pain and emotion relating to the abortion. My advisor was there with open arms. She picked up where we left off and understood that the healing process was not quite complete. We worked together again for a time and she helped me to understand and come to terms with the impact of the abortion on so many aspects of my life, including my relationship and how I viewed myself.
I am so grateful to The Haven for being there for me when I needed them. My advisor helped me to deal with the pain and rebuild my life. And let me know that she was there, even in the years to come.