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EACH TIME I hear a child laughing or see children playing, I regret not having any.
I truly regret that I did not have at least one child to leave all that I have worked so hard for. It’s not easy knowing that as you grow old, and friends pass on, that there is no one there to take care of you if the worst happens.
What makes these feelings even more severe for me is because I was pregnant twice – at 17 and 23 years old – and both times I had abortions as I thought I was not ready for a child.
I guess that’s the irony of life – something comes your way and you reject it; but when you want that same thing later, it never comes your way again.
My two closest friends and I have gone through the same thing, and when we get together all we do is sip wine and laugh at how our lives have turned out. Each of us say that had we known how empty our lives would have been now without a child, we would have brought ours into the world.
Unfortunately, each of us is way past that age that we can have a child now. I am 47 and they are 48 years old.
This guilty feeling is why I decided to talk about my biggest regret. Young women need to hear from people like me who have walked in their shoes, did what we were told, but now are unhappy because of it.
That’s why I firmly believe that as long as a girl is over 18 years old and gets pregnant, she should bring that child. The only reasons I would even consider abortion is if I was raped, or tests show that the baby would be disabled.
Believe me, I know all the reasons that can be used for a young woman to be persuaded not to continue her pregnancy. But if I knew at 23 what I know now about life, I would never have agreed to an abortion.
At 16 my mother made the decision for me, and that I agree with even now, because I was too young. But at 23 I was a big woman and working. I was in love with the man, but after I got pregnant and told him, he left me for another girl.
So, though I could have raised that child on my own, I thought I would have hated it because its father was a lying cheat.
But a strange thing happened; after I got rid of the pregnancy, and pressed on with my life, the same man who hurt me back then helped me secure a loan so I could go overseas and further my studies.
Though we weren’t into anything then, I guess he felt guilty about his actions so he helped me out.
Today, he and I are the best of friends – and friends only. And would you believe he has no children either?
Now, if I had ignored his attitude and taken that pregnancy to term, we would both be proud parents. But none of us could see the future. We never could have imagined back then that we would be so close today.
And that is why I take the position that I do on abortions. Avoid them at all cost.