Please read this amazing, helpful and down-to-earth piece on jezebel.com about having an abortion.
As the writer states, too few women have adequate resources about reproductive choices and facts about abortion. This great post helps translate real womens' experiences, and if you have to choose abortion, what procedures will be like.
If you're in New Mexico, here are local resources for you:
Planned Parenthood Offices in and near Albuquerque
Southwestern Women's Options
Listings for NM at National Abortion Federation
Bruce Ferguson, MD
One in three American women have had or will have an abortion, and if you're one of them, wading through the sea of hypercharged rhetoric and actually finding straightforward facts about the medical procedure that awaits can seem daunting.
I'm not going to patronize readers of this website by insisting that the decision is always a "gut-wrenching" or "horrible" or "life destroying" decision or whatthefuckever anti-choice groups insist abortion must be in all cases. In some cases, the emotional aftermath of an abortion is an overwhelming feeling of relief; in many readers' cases, terminating their pregnancies was simply a legal medical procedure that allowed their life to continue unabated after feeling briefly terrified, alone, and afraid.
While none of those who contributed say that they regretted their decision, many readers mentioned that resources available to them to prepare them for their experience were either emotionally anecdotal and thus not applicable to them or startlingly sterile and medical-sounding. In compiling this collection of readers' experiences, I sought to walk the line between the personal and the medical, to lift the veil of mystery and shame that surrounds a procedure that millions of women undergo every year, that you may undergo, or that your best friend may undergo, or that your daughter may someday undergo, and, since the 38th anniversary of Roe v. Wade is coming up this week, there's no time like the present.
The thing that struck me the most was that there was a momentum that my body now had, a process that I couldn't control.
RU-486 is a pill that chemically induces the body to miscarry. It can be used to terminate pregnancies that are 9 weeks along or fewer and is the most effective way to terminate a pregnancy that's fewer than seven weeks along. It's now known as mifepristone and is given to the patient in two doses, the first of which is administered at the clinic and stops the development of the fetus and the second of which is taken at home which induces the uterus to empty its contents. If you're in the UK, you have to take both doses at the clinic, but this may be changing in the near future.
If you're more than 7 weeks pregnant, you may be better suited for a vacuum aspiration. You'll have to undergo the same pee test/general vital checkup/ultrasound routine as everyone else, and when it's time for your procedure, you'll put on a hospital gown, lay down on an exam table under mild sedation and have the contents of your uterus essentially vacuumed out of you. The procedure's done in a matter of minutes, but readers reported that the sound of the mechanism used to perform the procedure is "disturbing."
This is tricky, because most places don't have doctors that will perform procedures on women who are beyond their first trimester and still wish to terminate their pregnancies. Second trimester abortions are massively more expensive, complicated, and traumatic than first trimester abortions, and thus it's important to stay on top of your own reproductive health and, if you're afraid you might be pregnant and you don't plan on carrying the pregnancy to term, take a pregnancy test if you're in the least bit scared.