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    5 Women Who Have Had An Abortion Got Honest About Not Having Regrets, And It's An Important Read

    "Honestly, I felt relieved, and I still feel relieved."

    Note: This article contains mention of substance abuse and physical abuse, which may be hard for some to read.

    A common myth concerning abortion claims that women often regret their choice afterward. This, however, could not be further from the truth. In a recent study conducted by the journal Social Science & Medicine, researchers found that five years after aborting, about 99% of people do not regret their decision.

    Leigh Vogel / Getty Images for Women's March Inc

    This is why I wasn't surprised by the brutally honest, yet refreshing answers to Reddit user @thefunk0001's question: "Women who have had abortions: What were your feelings immediately afterwards and what are your feelings now?"

    The responses were wide-ranging. Some spoke about mentally tackling the stigmas surrounding abortion, which led them to feel a sense of shame, and others never gave the procedure a second thought. The common thread between each answer, though, is rooted in a lack of regret. Here are some of the most interesting replies:

    1. "I had [an abortion] this last spring. I found out I was pregnant during my break on an eight-hour shift at my shitty minimum-wage job. I immediately knew that I was going to have to get an abortion."

    "Afterward, I was just so happy to not be sick anymore. I couldn't keep anything down except cooked ham slices, and I was just excited to eat something. 

    I knew I had made the right decision, and I felt no guilt. However, I felt dirty. I felt ashamed. Not depressed about the lost pregnancy or anything, but I had always considered myself a 'good girl,' and I felt like a failure, a disappointment, and like I had been tainted. And I was afraid to bring it up because it's such a polarizing topic that people feel violently strong about. I have always been pro-abortion, but the societal stigma of the act weighed on me for months without me even realizing what had got me so down."


    2. "I was in a long-term relationship with my now-fiancé, stable, and financially secure. I just plain did not want a baby, and I still don't."

    "I had a surgical abortion, and I did not have any intense emotions that some others talk about. It felt no different to me than any other doctor's appointment. I wasn't happy or sad, and I wasn't unsure or scared. I didn't have doubts or wonder if I was doing the wrong thing. Afterward, I was happy to know it was over because I knew I didn't want a baby inside me. I just went home, had pizza, and went to bed early due to the pain killers and mild anesthesia I was given. The next day continued on like any other.

    Maybe I'm callous, but it wasn't a traumatic or emotional experience for me. I didn't struggle with the decision. I knew what I would do the second I found out.

    At the time, I did wish I heard more stories like mine. Almost all abortion stories sound traumatic, with girls feeling a mix of shame, regret, and sadness. I didn't have hard time deciding to end it. Forcing an unwanted child on someone will do more damage to the child. 

    I could've given a child a healthy and stable two-parent home. We could also afford it. But I didn't want to. Neither did my fine fiancé. I just turned 30, and we still don't want to. I was OK with my choice then, and am still OK with it now. It was a selfish decision. It would have been even more selfish to bring an unwanted child on the world."


    3. "I was 19 when I had an abortion. I was on meth, my boyfriend at the time was on meth, and he was incredibly abusive toward me."

    "I had been kicked out of my parent's house. After I told my mom I had just found out I was pregnant, she let me come home. I initially agonized over the decision to terminate the pregnancy, but then I began to see things clearly. 

    What would stop my ex from abusing me in front of the child? How long would it take before he abused the child? Would I even make it through the pregnancy unharmed? I was young and naive and high and thought that maybe he would change and become a great boyfriend and father. Then I laughed at myself for even entertaining that idea and began to focus on cold hard facts: I was hooked on meth, and I had been using regularly throughout the pregnancy and had no way of knowing what kind of damage I had caused. That was the deciding factor. 

    Nothing about my circumstances was good for a child. I had the abortion, and today, 16 years later, I know that was the best and wisest decision I could have made for myself at that time. It took another six years before I finally kicked the shit for good, and I still believe I made the right decision to terminate. I am still relieved that I was able to see beyond me and make the right choice."


    4. "To be honest, I was super angry that I got pregnant. I have always been hyper vigilant about birth control and have never missed a pill."

    "I was raised religious and thought that the process would be more emotionally difficult. I was anxious about the pain and the hormonal shift, but immediately afterward, I felt mainly just exhausted and cramped up.

    As for how I feel four months later? I honestly don't ever think about it. I don't feel guilty. I sometimes count the weeks of how far along I would be in the pregnancy and imagine how I would cope with that. I live in poverty and have a tough time holding down a job, and I'm dealing with my mental health and past abuse. I'm really glad I was able to have the abortion."


    5. "I had one last year. I can't tell you the amount of women who told me things like, 'You will regret this,' or, 'You will feel a guilt inside of you for the rest of your life.' I didn't feel this way."

    "I knew what was best for me, and it wasn't a child. I couldn't afford one. I was still in college, and the dude wasn't even my boyfriend. 

    Immediately afterward, honestly, I felt relieved. I still feel relieved and thankful that we have the technology to safely terminate pregnancies."


    If you have had an abortion and are comfortable sharing, let us know why you didn't regret your decision in the comments below. Or, if you would like to remain anonymous, please use this Google form.

    If you or someone you know is in immediate danger as a result of domestic violence, call 911. For anonymous, confidential help, you can call the 24/7 National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE) or chat with an advocate via the website.

    For substance abuse resources, visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) website, or call 1-800-662-HELP.

    Note: Some responses have been edited for length/clarity.