"Everyone has a story to tell that could help others if they had the courage to tell it. I have many such stories but this one is the most shameful. I had an abortion when I was 19. In order to present the full story, I need to provide some background.
I am not blaming my childhood but it does explain why I did what I did. My Dad left when I was about 4 or 5 years old. I remember my mum being absent a lot and I remember a lot of parties and alcohol at our house with many strangers. I never felt settled. We moved around a lot when I was younger to many houses and we even spent many months in a domestic violence hostel. My mum’s boyfriend was a violent man and we were rejected and she was beat up weekly and she attempted suicide and self-harmed nearly every week. She finally left him after 5 years. I was so relieved but the closeness was not there between my mum and I and it was getting worse. At 13, I copied what my mum did and started drinking. I was drinking every weekend and at 14-15 I was taking drugs and shoplifting to fund it. At 17, I had yet another argument with my mum, and moved out. I slept on a friend’s couch until I turned 18 and then I privately rented a run-down flat with no heating. I was at college and continued with my college work and soon after got a place at university. I was determined to make it out of my chaotic life and leave it all behind.
Pretty soon in my first year of university, I met a boy and fell in love. I was ecstatic about life. I was finally succeeding. I thought if I worked hard enough at everything then everything would turn out ok. It didn’t take long for it all to come crashing down when I discovered I was pregnant.
I was 19 and the words “teenage pregnancy” and “cycles of deprivation” rang in my ears from my studies. I felt I had failed and ruined my life and squandered the opportunity that I’d worked so hard to achieve. I was absolutely devastated and terrified.
When I was growing up, I heard the message over and over again of “make something of your life”, “get a good education and career”, “kids ruin your life”. Those messages were woven into my consciousness so tightly that I believed them to be the truth. The thought of having to move back to the housing estate as just another statistic was something I was extremely frightened about. I hated my life there and I did not want to go back.
My best friend had flown to England and had an abortion the year before and she seemed to be ok about it all. So I began to give it some serious consideration. The more thought I gave it, the more sense it made to me. Logically, it would solve all my problems (or so I thought). This opened a doorway for a dark spirit that waged for the abortion against the Holy Spirit that was saying to keep the baby.
More and more time passed the spiritual battle within me progressed. It was horrific. I grieved enormously, the huge sobs would not quit. We (my boyfriend and I) struggled on our own with it mostly, I didn’t want to tell my mum as I still wasn’t that close to her. I was also afraid she’d stop me if I decided to go ahead with the abortion. I found it hard to truly confide to anyone about it as I was so ashamed of myself.
In the end, the fear gripped me and would not let go and I gave in to the spirit of darkness and flew to England. It turned out I was about 13 weeks pregnant. As soon as I awoke, I didn’t feel relief as much as I’d hoped. I was grieving and ashamed. A few of the girls sat around the ward chatting and one told us she was glad “the thing was out of her”. I lost it and rebuked her, reminding her it was a child. Everyone went silent. I never used to speak out back then, so this was not like me to speak out.
I was in so much emotional pain and I truly felt like I lost a part of me that day (and I had). Deep down inside, I knew I had made a huge mistake but now it was too late.
When I got home to Belfast, the depression worsened. I began drinking and taking drugs to numb out the pain. I was still with my boyfriend and I still loved him but looking back, the writing was on the wall that it was over. We went out for another 5 years but in the end, he hadn’t proposed and I suspected he never would. Besides, I was a mess. On the outside, I was doing ok. I had degree and Masters etc but inside I was grieving like mad. The drink and drugs only made matters worse and I put myself in many dangerous and stupid situations.
I have been on the long road to recovery ever since and it has taken me 22 years to finally accept what has happened to me. I am now a born-again Christian and it is through the love and salvation of our Lord Jesus Christ that I have overcome many obstacles. It is only with the benefit of hindsight that I see what happened to me and how having an abortion was so destructive to my life. That’s why I want to share this testimony with others because I don’t want them to make the same mistakes as me, which were as follows:
1: I ignored the Holy Spirit and I let the fear lead me instead. Deep down, I knew it was very wrong, yet I still did it. That grieves me to this day. I now clearly know and recognise that abortion is brutal murder. It’s brutal to cut up and painfully kill someone. The baby feels pain and what about pain relief for the baby? There is none. It’s barbaric.
2: On the surface, I believed the lie told by society that it is a woman’s right to choose to have an abortion. I believed the lies that it does not have any long-lasting effect on a woman and it’s often in her best interests to have an abortion. I also know from experience that I suffered deep and long-lasting consequences from my abortion that were extremely destructive for my health and soul.
3: I believed that it was ok to have sex outside of marriage as I was in a committed relationship. This was a lie. It was very destructive to me to do this. Sex is only ever ok within the remit of a marriage to welcome the children that naturally follow making love with your husband. I would advise any young person to abstain until they get married. They will not regret that decision. There is good reason behind God’s commandments, they are to protect us.
4: Another huge mistake was taking drink and drugs including prescription medications to numb the pain. Suppressing your emotions with substances only makes things worse for yourself in the long-run. It’s best to deal with things with a sober mind and ask God for forgiveness and lean on Him to guide you through your pain for true healing.
5: I have spent 20 years in and out of counselling and therapy and it didn’t really work permanently for very long. I regret not turning to the Lord Jesus Christ sooner.
6: Believing the lie that money, career and status are very important goals to attain in your life, even at the expense of your health and future eternity.
Although I have the benefit of hind-sight to realise my mistakes, I am thankful that God is merciful and has forgiven me. Over the years, I have discovered that there are many lies told to us by this world and often the value systems of self-seeking advancement are in fact detrimental to us. We are here to serve, not get to the top. Through my journey, I am grateful to finally know the truth about this life. Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth and the Life and no one will get to the Father in heaven without Him. He is the Truth and His teachings are the way we should live our life.
The innocent souls that have been slaughtered, whose lives were removed before they were born, are now in heaven being looked after. I was overjoyed to learn this and I am so humbled before the Lord Jesus Christ to allow me to go there one day and see my first baby. Jesus is slowly removing the guilt from me and offering me true healing and forgiveness. I am only sorry that I wasn’t strong enough to resist the lie that abortion is acceptable because it is legal. I regret not listening to that small still voice inside of me (the Holy Spirit) that was gently leading me away from destruction.
It is my prayer that Northern Ireland will not follow in footsteps of down South (ROI), nor England, nor USA etc in carrying out abortions-on-demand. Indeed, in my heart I know that one day the whole world will stop this carnage and see it for what it truly is, the murder of precious innocent souls.
Nation upon nation will hang their heads in shame in remorse for the crimes they’ve committed against these babies. It is up to each person, to allow God to search their heart and convict them of any part they play in allowing this to continue. Your silence is consent.
When God convicts your heart, you must not be passive instead you must speak out against these murderous lies.
Thank you for reading and I pray that you are filled with God’s love and the truth is revealed to you by the Holy Spirit. Our Lord Jesus Christ loves each of you who are reading this and if you have not come to know Him yet, there is still time to start a relationship with Him today. He is the only son of God and was sent to save us. Ask Him to show you that He is real and if you truly genuinely seek Him, He will answer you. You won’t regret it. Your life will be completely transformed.