Bustle writer Amanda Chatel opened up this week about her inner conflict about the child she is carrying in her womb.
More than a decade ago, she aborted her first unborn baby and had no regrets about it. She claimed her abortion made her who she is today.
But now Chatel is not as certain about her second unborn baby’s future.
“Back then, the choice was easy: abortion,” she wrote. “Not only did I feel like I too young to have a baby, but I lacked all the things a mother should have, from financial to emotional to mental stability. …
“But now, 13 years later, the decision I made then and made so easily, is no longer easy. It’s actually really hard,” she continued.
A 20-something in New York City at the time of her first pregnancy, she said she drank and partied too much and got pregnant to a bartender whose name she cannot even remember.
“So, I got my abortion and never looked back,” Chatel wrote. “I never regretted it, I never felt bad, and I never second-guessed my choice. To this day, I stand by the fact that it was, hands down, the best decision of my life.”
But now, 13 years later, the decision I made then and made so easily, is no longer easy. It’s actually really hard.
I have the life I have today because of my abortion 13 years ago. I have the career I have because of my abortion 13 years ago. I’ve been to amazing, faraway places, because of that abortion. I have loved deeply, I’ve been married, I lost that man to death, then I learned to love again because of that abortion 13 years ago. I sit on a rooftop terrace in Barcelona today writing this because of my abortion 13 years ago. But while my life is certainly not over and I still have phenomenal things to do and places to go and people to meet, I’m no longer in my 20s. I feel like I no longer have an excuse to be accidentally pregnant, even if I was actually playing by the rules and being responsible this time around. Everything is different.
She said she now has a good job and a good relationship with her baby’s father. She also acknowledged that she is 37 years old and her chances of conceiving a child are growing slimmer.
At the same time, Chatel said she does not want a child. She said she has taken the birth control pill faithfully to avoid becoming pregnant, but a severe case of food poisoning this summer kept the pill from entering her system.
“I’m a woman who has no business being a mother. Not then, not now, and not ever,” she wrote.
Yet, she said she has not made a final decision yet about aborting her second child. She said she has been imagining the baby with her curly hair and her partner’s sense of humor, his dark eyes and her love of pizza.
“How do you terminate a pregnancy when you truly love the person who got you pregnant?” she wrote. “I don’t know, and I’ve spent the last few days trying to answer that question and I come up with nothing but silence.”
Hopefully, Chatel choose life for her unborn baby this time. Hopefully, she will realize that her baby’s life has value, and that, even at just a few weeks of pregnancy, her baby’s DNA already has laid out whether he or she will have their father’s dark eyes or mother’s curly hair.
And hopefully, she will realize that her abortion did not erase motherhood. She was a mother 13 years ago and she continues to be a mother today to two precious, unique human beings whose lives will never be replicated in all of history.