How physically painful was your abortion

The termination of pregnancy: sad and relieving at the same time

For most women, abortion is a decision that they grapple with. It is often associated with mourning about leaving, but it is a coherent event in one's own life story. Many women feel relieved after the termination of pregnancy.

Either - or: There is no compromise

An unwanted pregnancy can be an emotional and physical exceptional situation for women: It is about the decision for or against living with (another) child. Often both appear to be equally difficult. If the woman or the couple decides to break off, this is often associated with noticeable trepidation. Many are afraid of the procedure and of complications, perhaps also of feelings of guilt or regret later on. The thoughts and feelings that need to be processed are diverse: farewell, sadness, liberation and the desire to give the decision a convincing meaning.

Making a sustainable decision under these conditions is not easy. Often women then want a clear decision, which they experience as a relief and release from the difficult situation.

Processing the demolition: what can help

Everyone has their own way of processing important life events. Observing a few basic things can help you cope mentally and physically with the abortion:

  • Take as much time as you need and don't let yourself be rushed. A decision that you can live with well in the future will take time. In the case of a pregnancy conflict, the time is not unlimited, but it is usually sufficient to sort out the current personal circumstances, talk to people close to you and calmly clarify what is feasible and acceptable and what is not.
  • The professional experience of the employees of pregnancy counseling centers can help to sort out the contradicting feelings and to clarify the general conditions objectively and realistically.
  • Answer the question for yourself: Is the termination my own, well-considered decision for which I can answer? Or do I react to external, for example family or moral, pressure? Do I need more support to find my own position?
  • Do you have all the important information about the termination of pregnancy? Some women need a lot of information, others want to know as little as possible and all they need is the certainty that they are in good medical hands.
  • What do you need to feel that you are in good hands and accompanied before, during and after the termination? Is your partner, good friend, or someone else there to help when you need help?
  • How much time do you need after the cancellation? Would you like to take your time to say goodbye to the ideas that pregnancy brought with it? Or would you prefer to move on to everyday life quickly?
  • Have you checked your motives not only with your head, but also “with your gut”? For many people, a coherent decision only arises from a match between thinking and gut instinct.

Whatever the right path for you: Looking back, it is important for many women to know that they did not make the decision lightly.

Mental consequences?

In the discussion about coping with an abortion, the so-called "post abortion syndrome" (PAS) occasionally appears. This is a generic term for mental disorders that are intended to be triggered by a termination. The international study situation shows, however, that there is no clear evidence for the PAS.

Under certain circumstances, however, psychological problems can arise after a termination. Studies show that stressful living conditions - such as poverty and experiences of violence or previous mental illnesses - make mental problems more likely after a termination. In addition, there is external pressure from the partner or family, a lack of social and emotional support and the need to keep the termination a secret.

Scientific studies conclude that termination alone does not increase the risk of developing mental disorders later. According to current studies, women who are treated and cared for well medically and emotionally in this situation obviously do not have any more psychological problems than women who carry an unwanted pregnancy to term.

Learn to accept contradicting feelings

Experience shows that a break, like all important decisions in life, is remembered. It is seldom experienced as a permanent burden, but it is also rarely completely forgotten. It is not always present, but reappears in some life situations and may require a new understanding from a different perspective.

Often the decision itself is not doubted later. Rather, the circumstances under which it was cut are reassessed. You might imagine how life would have been if you had decided differently. Then it helps to know that the decision was logical from that point of view. In this way it is possible to take on the responsibility for the decision made at that time again and again - as happens with other important life events that shape one's own life path.