Monday, January 28, 2013

behind the abortion

I struggled with this blog post. Not because I haven't shared parts of this story before.  I struggle with the heartbreaking back story behind why I had my abortion when I was 17 years old. Its a dark story of my past that I think about and regret daily. Not  a day goes by in which I wished I was braver and made a better decision. But its hard to be brave when your in the middle of abuse. I do not know the stories behind all the women who have abortions. But I am sensing a general blanketed assumption from some people that most of the women who have had them love to "kill babies". I wanted to share my story. I don't want to kill babies, I never had and I never will. I love babies more than anything in this world and  Judah is the greatest blessing in my life. I cherish that boy. I hope by me sharing my story that someone out there reads this and realizes the deep pain that is associated with having an abortion. 

When I was 17 years old, not knowing any better I dated a man who was just like my abusive father. Alex was a few years older than me and looking back I think it was illegal for him to date a girl still in high school. I was beginning my senior year of high school in Tampa and I noticed with in the first few weeks of walking the hallways I would get really really sick. I was in honors classes and typically loved school but I was tired all the time, running to the bathrooms to throw up and daily struggling with my school work. One day when Alex picked me up from school, drove me to a Burger King, handed me a pregnancy test and told me to take it in the bathroom. I never thought I would find out I was pregnant in a dirty Burger King bathroom. When I hopped back into his truck I smiled and handed him the pregnancy test. I assumed this wasn't planned but this was still good news. He didn't speak to me on the way home. 

Once we got to my home I remember standing on the front porch and Alex (who already had a two year old daughter) turned to me and said "well you have to get rid of it". I didn't understand and asked him what he meant and he said I had to get an abortion. I was numb. I didn't know what to say to him and I couldn't tell my family because I knew my already abusive father would beat me up again over the news of me being pregnant. 

For weeks I put off the phone call to the clinic. I told Alex I couldn't afford it. I gave him books that I found in my high school library letting him know of the babies progress. He didn't care, he would throw the books at my stomach and he would drop me off on front of my job at McDonald's and tell me to get extra shifts.  When he was really drunk and angry, him and his brother would beat me, to the point of me cramping up and spotting. Alex was an evil man and I was scared to death of him. 

A day came after a particularly bad beating, I hid myself in my closet afraid my parents would know what was going on and called the clinic. I made the appointment. I was scared and didn't know what to do. If I didn't make the appointment Alex was very clear in his intent to "beat the baby out of me". When Alex drove me to my appointment I begged him to change his mind and he would just pinch me really hard in the arm so he wouldn't leave a mark on my face for the people at the clinic to see.

I remember laying down on the hospital bed, I saw the sonogram and the nurse told me I was around 13 weeks. I wanted to scream "STOP I WANT TO KEEP THE BABY" but I knew Alex was out in the waiting room and was afraid of what he might do. The nurse gave me some sort of drug and turned on a sound machine. I remember the doctor coming in and the cramping. Then I remember the blood, so much blood. When I walked out to the waiting room I told Alex "are you happy now". I hated him. But I hated myself more. 

On the drive home I was sick, kept throwing up and at one point Alex pulled over his truck really fast, opened the door and pushed me out onto the ground so I wouldn't get any throw up on his seats. 

Two weeks went by, I honestly blocked it all out of my memory. I had to go to the clinic for a follow up. The doctor checked me out and said it was okay to have sex. When Alex brought me home he forcefully raped me on my living room floor. This wouldn't be the first time. Alex wanted nothing more than to beat, use and torture my body and soul.

Eventually my parents found out I had an abortion because the mother of Alex's first child told my father. I was 17 years old and my father kicked me out of the house. I moved up to Virginia to live with my mom and step father. I was depressed, took sleeping pills to sleep at night because I had nightmares. I didn't want to go back to high school, I felt that I was different and that no one would understand what I went through. I hated myself and I wished I would have died. After awhile I moved back down to Florida to live with Alex in a trailer for a few months. I have police reports from all the beatings that took place. Part of me even accepted the beatings because I hated myself so much from what I did, I thought I deserved them and that it was Gods way of punishing me. Alex repeatedly told me over and over and over again how I was worthless, how I was a baby killer and how I will never ever have a child. That broke me. I hated myself. I hated myself more than anything or anyone I could ever hate. I hated myself more than I hated Alex. Finally I got away from Alex and his abuse and although I am currently in my early 30s not a day goes by in which I don't think of my baby and wished that I made a different decision. 

I live daily with my consequences of what I did. When I found out I was pregnant with Judah I was fearful to tell my husband because I thought he was going to beat me. Scott never has and never will lay a hand on me, he is the kindest person I know. But since Alex beat me so badly I was fearful that any man would do the same.  I was scared my first 13 weeks of being pregnant with Judah because I thought I was going to lose him, that God would punish me and take him away. When I first had Judah I woke Scott up one night crying and asking him "where is my other baby!!".

The reason why I am sharing this is because Friday was the 40 year anniversary of Roe vs Wade and I have been seeing anti abortion pictures of unborn babies and blog posts everywhere. Every time I read a blog post, see a picture of an unborn child or hear someone talking about how people "kill babies" I literally feel this deep sadness grab my heart and and pull me back to that awful day when I was 17. I hear Alex's voice screaming in the back of my head "you will never be a mother, you are a baby killer".

No one can get rid of the feelings of having an abortion.
My hope in this is that we are able to come along side some of these women just like me who are hurting deeply. Women who are afraid to share their pain because they fear judgement. If we love one another we are able to make better decisions. If someone came along side me and loved on me when I was 17 years old I would be able to say that I had a baby when I was 17, that he/or she was adopted into a loving home. Not that my abusive boyfriend drove me to the abortion clinic so I could terminate a life.

 I am a Christian, became a believer a few years after my abortion and I know that the Lord has forgiven me of so much. Its very hard to reconcile that forgiveness in my heart and head when I see people posting so many hurtful things about something I did in my past. Before we make assumptions or post up things that could be hurtful, lets try to think of the hurt hearts out there that need healing and think if the words we are saying are healing or hurting those broken hearts.

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49 comments:

  1. Oh wow Jess! I am so sorry. I didn't know. You are an amazing person!!

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  2. Jess... you are so brave for sharing your story! No doubt it will help someone who may be in a bad situation. I would never judge... I just want to reach through this screen and give you a big hug for everything you've been through and overcame! xoxo

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  3. Wow, Jess, what a heart-wrenching story. I have no words since there really aren't any to say - just know that I have so much love for you and truly admire you for coming out so strong on the other end of such tragedy.

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  4. You are so brave to share that story. Thank you for putting yourself out there so people can stop and think if they are coming from a place of love or a place of hate. I'm sorry am deeply sorry you went thru that, but the strength it took to share the story could be the help someone else needs to make a different choice or not feel so alone.

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  5. I know it wasn't easy for you to share this. God bless you for being brave and being willing to help others with your story.

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  6. oh Jess. i dont even know what to say. my older sister had an abortion d/t a very similar situation. its really heartbreaking to hear your story and to know that you had to suffer like that. your bravery is amazing. your story is powerful. lots of love to you, jess!! {i know that this is totally not the same thing, but i had a m/c at 9 weeks and every single time i see the abortion activists with the signs of actual pictures of aborted babies, i get sick to my stomach. that is simply not the way to support a cause}

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  7. You are so brave for sharing your story. No one knows why people choose to have abortions, and I think most people are quick to judge. I do not agree with it, but when it comes to someone being abused, raped with the end result of getting pregnant. Who am I to tell them what to do with their body? I am so sorry that you lived through abuse, and had to give up a baby, and now that you have to live with everything. Thank you for sharing your story, and opening my eyes.

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  8. proud of you friend... your story is so important and I pray that others are encouraged by it..

    "its hard to be brave when your in the middle of abuse"

    I pray that people remember this too... that there is always a backstory with abortions. Love you xoxo

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  9. Thank you for sharing your story, your honesty is inspiring.

    Sheree
    thehartungs.blogspot.ca

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  10. That is very powerful and you are a strong woman to share this with everyone! Everyone makes mistakes...I commend you on your strength!

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  11. Thank you for sharing your story. My heart aches for you. That you had to ensure such pain and suffering. But I am thanking God for His redemption and healing in your life. For an amazing husband and son!! Your story and others is the reason I am meeting with a woman who runs a maternity home tomorrow to discuss what we can do to better help women and girls who are in similar situations to yours. God has placed it on my heart to minister to those young mothers with nowhere to turn.

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  12. I am so proud of you for sharing this. For standing up for yourself and that baby. Even though it is not here, it loves you. And even before Judah you were a mom. This had to be a hard post to type and hard to let these things resurface. You are a wonderful person, and I am so sorry you ever had to go through any of this <3

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  13. This touched me so hard! I had an abortion too. It's the hardest thing I've ever had to experience. I'm so deeply sorry for what you had to go through and think it takes a lot to share this kind of story! Your an amazing person!

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  14. so thankful that God is bringing healing to old wounds and beginning to give you the courage to use your story to share life and healing to others. i know that he will restore the years of the locust and spring up life where there once was none.















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  15. Oh Jess, you are the most incredible, strong woman. So so brave for going through what you did, and sharing your story. My heart breaks for you, tears are streaming down my face. You are amazing, truly amazing xxx

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  16. I just want to give you the biggest hug right now. Thank you for sharing your story and for being so open and honest about such a difficult and dark time in your life. You are such a beautiful soul and we are so blessed to worship and God of forgiveness. Of mercy. Of redemption. Of love. Your sins have been washed clean and he has forgotten them because he loves you. And he is giving you a chance to share your story and to help heal other broken women who have dealt with the same things you have. Praying for you today, sweet lady. You are amazing. I seriously have so much respect for you. Xo

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  17. I pray peace for you, and I pray that your story would change someone's life.

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  18. I have no words.
    Just love.
    I admire your honesty and strength. <3

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  19. Oh momma, can't imagine the pain, so grateful you got out of that situation and have a beautiful family now. Thanks so much for you strength and honesty!!!

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  20. jess thank you for sharing. you are so special and brave. you have overcome so much and im so happy to know you, you beautiful soul.

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  21. this is possibly one of the most heart-wrenching things that I have ever read. I am struggling so hard not to try and be sick at the same time. You are a brave, sweet, and loving mom.

    I'm so sorry for what you went through. Praise God that you met Jesus and your sins have been washing clean, you are white as snow. Praise God for your husband who loves you and would never harm you. Praise God for your sweet boy Judah. Praise God that your baby is in the arms of Jesus, where no harm will ever come to your child.

    I'm so sorry for what you have gone through. I haven't been posting anything, but I am a pro-life advocate. You have made me re-think the things that I will post in the future and to be more mindful of what I say.

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  22. Thank you for sharing. My heart hurt for you but rejoiced at how you are overcoming the pain and how God blessed you with little Judah. Girl you should right a book...you are so strong.

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  23. You are so brave to share your story! Beyond a shadow of a doubt you have blessed many by your beautiful heart. xoxo

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  24. I'm not going to lie, the title of this post made me uneasy at first. As a childless woman who suffered multiple early term m/c's then ended up having a hysterectomy due to cancer, it rips my heart to shreds hearing about women who have had abortions. (Please understand, not in a judging way AT ALL, just in such a deep longing and still heartbroken at what I always thought "should have been for me" way.) I can't imagine how terrified you must have been. I am so sorry that you ever suffered like that, no one deserves to be hit, let alone be emotionally abused. Never, ever, ever! It sounds like you really do know that you are forgiven by God, but have you forgiven yourself? God loves you and you are precious to Him. When He looks at you, he sees you, not a past action (praise Jesus for that!) Thank you for sharing such a personal experience, you are such a sweet woman and I adore your blog!



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  25. I do consider myself very much a pro-life conservative. And although I do not re-post those pictures that you speak of, I have seen them-- but never through your eyes.

    I am so sorry for what you went through and I think you are very courageous to tell your story. ...which I am sure was not an easy task to do.

    I pray for you that you have found peace with yourself, and am grateful that you found a man who broke your mold for companionship!

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  26. I don't remember if I ever met you, but I do know that you are my family. And it takes a strong woman to post something tragic that happened to her, it also shows your character. You are helping not just yourself, but other people as well. I'm proud to be your cousin, and I admire you deeply. Maybe one day we can meet (: much love going your way.

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  27. I just want you to know that I love you.

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  28. Thank you for sharing your story Jess. I know it must have not been easy but please know that by doing so, you have touched people's heart... you've touched mine. Judah is very lucky to have you as a mother. You can't change what happened in the past but, just know that you're a great person and a wonderful mother.

    Love is stronger.

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  29. It takes a lot of courage for someone to post something so honest & so painful. I applaud you for your bravery because you never know if there is a girl somewhere who is or was in a similar situation that may read this post & find courage from it.

    I consider myself completely pro-life and after reading your post I believe that you are also pro-life. It breaks my heart to imagine the kind of life you were enduring and at 17, I can't say that I myself in that situation wouldn't have made the same choice.

    I am so glad that you have found the acceptance of forgiveness in Christ. You seem like a wonderful mother & the Lord works in mysterious ways - hopefully He will use your story will help others. :)

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  30. This is beautiful, so honest, and so brave. I'm really grateful that you shared this. Your story has really added to the depth of my thinking on this complicated issue.
    I don't think that we necessarily share the same views on abortion (I'm pro-choice, and spiritually agnostic), but I really do hope that ardent pro-lifers read this and see the face and story and goodness behind the person who make the choice to have an abortion. I have no doubt that had you had the strength to take a different path (and my god, considering the circumstances, holy cow, how could you have done anything differently, please be kind to your younger self, you were dealing with so much) you would have been capable and wonderful at loving that baby.
    I also have no doubt that there are people for whom the decision to have an abortion is the right one. They too, may experience loss and pain, but also know that the decision was the right one.

    It is my fervent hope that people like you who share with such bravery and honesty can shed light on this issue, from both directions, and people from both sides of the proverbial fence can maybe glimpse into the others' world.

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  31. So much love for you! Thank you for writing this post and for being so honest and open.

    I'm not a pro-life activist. And I have struggled with my feelings about abortions over the years, so I don't talk about it much. On one hand, I can understand how abortions can actually be beneficial for women in horrible situations, especially single, lower-income women. And, now that I read your story, perhaps even women who are being abused. I don't want to be a part of something that takes away rights of disenfranchised women.

    But, as I was struggling with this thought (I am a Christian), I was reminded that these babies are, well, babies. I need to stand up for the babies instead of standing for our selfish desires as women to "control our bodies" (with no thought for the bodies of unborn children).

    That's not to say I judge you for what you did. My heart breaks for you. And it also rejoices with you as you show how people can be redeemed and loved and forgiven. I pray that while the hurt might not ever go away, that you will be able to see yourself as God sees you - pure, and clean, and forgiven - as if it never happened. xo

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  32. I am so, so, SO very sorry. This is like anything else we try to judge others about - we never know their story until they tell us and it's not our place to judge anyway. I wish your situation could have been different too, but it was not.

    I'm glad you put your story out there. I'm positive it WILL help someone else... xo

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  33. This is so heartbreaking. I'm so sorry that you had to go through this. You had your choice taken away from you and that should never ever happen. People should never judge why someone has an abortion, I have the feeling that no one has ever had one because they "like killing babies" and it's awful for anyone to insinuate that. Wishing you healing and peace. *hugs*

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  34. i'm sorry you had to live through that. i wouldn't have ever thought that you went through something like that because God is clearly reflected in everything that you do, and it's amazing that you hung onto your faith.

    you are inspiring.

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  35. I was crying reading this post. What you must have been through I can only imagine, no one deserves that. Alex is the baby killer not you, you're completely innocent.

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  36. Wow Jess. My heart breaks for what you had to endure. Thank you for sharing your story. I pray peace falls on your soul today and every day.

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  37. so glad for you to share this testimony. i pray that it encourages others to choose life. so thankful for all the good that God will and has made of your story.

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  38. It seems we have a lot in common. I know for me blogging about it helped but know that you did nothing wrong. It's a hard process to go through xoxo

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  39. You are such a beautiful person, both inside and out. I am constantly inspired by your giving heart to others. Thank you for sharing your story and reminding us that there are often two sides to every story. I just wanted you to know how much I appreciate you sharing that part of your heart. xoxoxo

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  41. This post brought me to tears. Thank you for sharing. I know it must have been tough to post. You're inspiring & your story is one that I will not soon forget.

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  42. I came across your blog from a facebook post of a friend of a friend. You are such a beautiful, courageous and brave woman. Thank you for sharing such vulnerable moments that brought me to tears.

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  43. You are an amazing, giving and kind woman! I cried when I read this, thank you for sharing and I am in awe of the amazing person you are today after all of this. XO

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  44. you are absolutely amazing and stunning and a true picture of what God wants us to be as women and mothers and friends. XO

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  45. I finally got around to reading this and I love your sentiment. My friend and I were talking about something similar this weekend and how (most) women who go through something like this carry their own demons around with them. There is no reason for others to be so hurtful (mentally AND physically) and judgemental! The truth is there is only one that can judge and it's not any of us. Everyone's situation is different and noone knows what anyone else is going through at any given moment. <3

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  46. You are an amazing woman! I can relate to some parts of this story. Although I wasn't abused by my ex I did get pregnant at 16 and was pressured to have an abortion by him and his family. I made the choice to run away from the confrontation though and do it on my own letting him off easy. The hurt is still there though. Keep your head up mama! We love you and are here for you! I will be praying for you everyday! Good luck with your CNN interview! We'll be holding your hand through spirit! <3

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  47. I am sure these words will reach someone who needs them. Thank you for being strong and sharing this story. We will be thinking of you tomorrow and praying everything goes well. Love you, friend!
    Andrea

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  48. Love the story. Sharing it in school.

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  49. Jess, I stumbled across your instagram account after looking at pictures my followers liked. After creeping on your IG, I happened to click on your photo about your CNN interview about your story 'Behind the Abortion'. I was literally in tears the whole time I was reading your story. I could feel your pain while reading your words. I can't imagine the pain in your heart but I believe you are very brave for sharing. Honestly, what grabbed me the most was that you turned to God and found Jesus Christ after the abortion. God does forgive you and loves you, and I am so glad that you have faith in the Lord. Always remember John 14:6. The second reason why I fpund interest in your story is because I have been struggling with an abortion that my mom had after I was born. It's funny how God works, stumbling upon your IG then leading me to this story. Thank you for sharing and helping others, and as always God Bless.

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Thank you for your comments! They encourage my heart and I read every single one of them. Please be encouraging and don't just comment or email me when you want to correct me on my grammar. When I get the "grammar correction" emails or comments they do hurt my feelings. I wouldn't want your heart to feel the way mine does after reading them.

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