“Lockdown gave me time to torture myself with thoughts of a baby that will never exist”: DIY home abortion heartbreak

By SPUC—the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children

The lonely and tragic reality faced by women undergoing a DIY home abortion during the Coronavirus lockdown has been revealed through the testimony of one young woman. The anonymous writer, who was left alone at home during lockdown to perform her own abortion under the Government’s new guidelines stated: “Lockdown gave me time to torture myself with thoughts of a baby that will never exist.”

DIY home abortion regulations were implemented by the Government in response to the Coronavirus lockdown. It involves women being left to obtain chemical abortion drugs over video call and then having to perform their own abortions at home with no medical supervision or support. The woman will not be required to meet a doctor in person, and the abortion drugs will be delivered through the post.

One woman’s testimony has revealed the lonely reality behind these regulations, as anonymously she describes the process of her DIY home abortion.

“I couldn’t get my head round the fact I was ending a pregnancy without seeing a doctor”

The anonymous woman said: “All I can focus on is another, less joyous, side to pregnancy during the coronavirus crisis – those women who, like me, have chosen to terminate a pregnancy in lockdown.

“Around a month ago, I discovered I was pregnant following a one-night stand with a colleague. I’m 25, broke and single. The baby hadn’t been conceived in love or anything close.

“I felt adrift. I wasn’t even sure I could have an abortion in lockdown. After a quick Google search, I discovered that, under new rules, women under 10 weeks pregnant could qualify for an ‘at home’ termination. If they meet safety criteria, they’ll receive two sets of abortion tablets through the post. Before the pandemic, patients needed to take the first of these in a clinic.

“The first step was a 45-minute consultation with a nurse over the phone. We talked through my medical history, which was straightforward as I don’t have any health problems or take medication.

“Although it was reassuring to know I was shielding myself from the virus by avoiding a clinic, I couldn’t get my head round the fact I was ending a pregnancy without seeing a doctor face-to-face.

“When the pills arrived four days later, I rejoiced that the packaging was plain. None of my housemates would have ever guessed at the contents.

“I took the first pill (mifepristone) straightaway, which blocks the pregnancy hormone. Physically, I felt no different after swallowing, however my mind was racing. 24 hours later, I took the second set of medication (misoprostol) which causes the womb to contract and pushes out the unborn foetus. I put two tablets on each side of my mouth between my cheeks and gums, then let them dissolve.

“Alone on my bed, I stared out the window and noticed seven birds on the roof of the house opposite: it seemed ironic, a lucky number. Two hours later, I started bleeding. The sensation was no worse than period pain and lasted around two days. The blood (or should I say baby?) oozed out in dark brown clumps.

 “I retreated into my bedroom and binge watched Girls, while I pushed aside my feelings of guilt….lockdown gave me time to torture myself with thoughts of a baby that will never exist.

“Perhaps my daughter (I’m convinced it was a girl) would have grown up to marry Boris Johnson Junior who’d have been around her age or even become prime minister herself. I’ll never know.

“My family escaped the virus, I still feel I’ve lost someone during the pandemic”

“It didn’t seem right to burden friends with my unplanned pregnancy news. The abortion service had given me a number to call if I needed counselling, but what was there to say?

“It seemed like every time I turned on the news, I saw images of new mothers. They’d had their babies during a worldwide crisis, while I’d flushed mine down the loo.

“While I’m grateful my family have escaped the worst of the virus, I still feel I’ve lost someone during the pandemic, but it’s not a loss I can openly mourn.”