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To Tell My Teenage DD That I Had An Abortion

(66 Posts)
MotherOfaTeenageNosyParker Mon 18-Jul-11 23:33:27

She was 8 at the time and I also had a 4yr old and a 2 yr old and due to our circumstances at the time (very stressful move to another country), I could not have coped with another baby. I was 6 weeks pregnant when I had it and at the time I was fine about it. It was a few years later that it hit home what I had done.

She is now 15 and read my bloody diary (I left it in the kitchen)! I am undergoing a 'self help' program as I have suffered from extreme anxiety for the last 5 years. Part of this is to recognise that I have to forgive myself for certain things that I feel guilty about so I can work on releasing the emotions attached to them. So I wrote a list of stuff that I need to mentally get rid off and put down the date that it happened rather than 'abortion' so she is now asking me what happened on that date! I have told her to mind her bloody nose but she's like a sniffer dog with the scent of a fox and will not let it go.

Now we have a very close relationship and talk about everything. She quite often comes to me with certain scenarios in her mind and asks me what I would do if for instance, she got pregnant, started smoking, started taking drugs etc. I always draw on my own experiences as a teenager to talk about things like this although I had my abortion at the age of 35 whilst in a happy marriage so totally different circumstances from a teenager getting pregnant (I was 27 when I had her) and I do not feel that I could ever share this experience with her as I am sure she would hate me.

I would be horrified if she found out and would be a complete hypocrite if she came to me for advice if she ever did want to have an abortion as I would advise her not to.

Is there ever a time for a mother to share something like this with her daughter?

BitOfFun Mon 18-Jul-11 23:36:41

I wouldn't. Some things are private, surely?

MissMississippi Mon 18-Jul-11 23:39:47

My mum had an abortion under similar circumstances to you. She vowed to tell me one day and told me once I had a DC of my own. She fathomed that I would understand more. I don't think any less of her. I am glad she told me, but have not given it much thought until I read your post.

IMO she is too yung now, but perhaps sometime in the future.

So yes, there is a time for a mother to share this with her daughter. Then 'when' is up to you.

bubblesincoffee Mon 18-Jul-11 23:41:46

When I waas 15, my Mum told me that she had had an abortion when I was 6. I am an only child, so I was a bit gutted really, and I still am when I think about it.

I understand her reasons completely, and she probably did the right thing. We would have had different Fathers, neither of whom were in a relationship with my Mum, and one of us would have been provided for well by their Father and one would have had nothing. I really can see why she did it. But I still feel like I lost my little brother. (I have no real idea that it was a boy, it's just that that's what I wanted).

Your dd has siblings, so it may well be very different for her. I have no advice, but I thought I'd share my experience.

BabyDubsEverywhere Mon 18-Jul-11 23:42:08

If it were me I would have no quarms about talking about it, I dont see abortion as a shameful thing. Its a medical proceedure. People make mistakes, physical illness - woman or fetus, mental illness, emotional wellbeing...sure there are more. Theres usually a good reason, those that abuse the system are in the minority (I like to believe), So for all these reasons and more i wouldnt have a problem discussing this topic with a mature (for age, not in age) teen.

However, you obviously have some deep issues around this and maybe you should work out those (as much as you can) before so you dont end up using her as a theapy (bitter experience)

hester Mon 18-Jul-11 23:43:00

My mum had an abortion when I was 12. She asked my advice about what to do. When she came home and haemorrhaged, I helped her.

Times were different then, and it was fashionable to share much more information with children than we would think appropriate now. I certainly will not tell my daughters that I had an abortion when they are 12. But I have to say that being told myself didn't disturb or damage me at all. It was fine. And probably helped me when I went through the experience myself, not that long after.

Birdsgottafly Mon 18-Jul-11 23:45:32

She is displaying childhood curiosity, an adult would respect your privacy.

She is not an adult yet, who would benefit from her knowing?

If you are suffering from anxiety, then it would add to that if she couldn't cope with what you tell her, as you would have her emotions to deal with on top of not being able to yet handle your own emotions.

She is a teenager and is developing her own view of the world and discovering who she is, she doesn't need this to be revealed.

Tell her that it is private, the more that she pushes, shows that she is immature and that is good enough reason not to share.

MotherOfaTeenageNosyParker Mon 18-Jul-11 23:52:48

You're right. I will not tell her. I do feel I have to hide it and that compounds the shame I feel about it. I did tell my sisters long afterwards and 3 out of the 4 of them now do not contact me as a direct result of that so I have always worried that she would find out from someone else rather than me, i.e one of them.

She is too young though. I will just have to hope that she does not need advice of that kind for a long while yet it at all!

Thanks for the replies.

MrsFlittersnoop Mon 18-Jul-11 23:56:15


Why would you CHOOSE to upset her? Why on earth should she need to know?

This was YOUR decision - it doesn't involve her.

hester Tue 19-Jul-11 00:06:26

It is absolutely right to keep adult things private, and away from your dd. But I am concerned that you are still not resolved about your abortion, and that you would advise her not to have one. Your experience sounds very painful, and you need to be able to forgive yourself and move on before your dd ends up having to grapple with these issues for herself.

I'm really sorry about your sisters. That must have been so distressing.

VictorGollancz Tue 19-Jul-11 00:09:48

If you feel that it's inappropriate for your progress and the relationship between you and your daughter, then don't tell her.

But it's not a shameful thing - you sound like a good mother who made the best decision for herself and her family. All sorts of women have abortions, for all sorts of reasons.

But your own experience isn't a sex ed lesson unless you want it to be.

ll31 Tue 19-Jul-11 00:11:56

you hve all my sympathy.. don't think tho I'd tell her until she's adult.. but I get ur poitn re sisters - if they tell her before u it won't help maybe ur relationship.. still tho think I woudln't tell her till she's adult

slightlyunbalanced Tue 19-Jul-11 00:16:45

My kids asked me directly if I had ever had an Abortion, I told them yes as I did not want to lie to them. I also told them at the time I wasn't capable of looking after myself let alone a baby.

They were shocked but I think they were okay with it actually, and they know that I am fallible.


Birdsgottafly Tue 19-Jul-11 00:19:48

OP have you had outside help for any of your anxiety or are you just going down the self help route?

You should consider talking to a counsellor, keeping something private doesn't equal shame.

Your sisters have chosen to judge you, that doesn't make them right, it was your decision to make and they should respect and support that.

TheSecondComing Tue 19-Jul-11 00:24:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BitOfFun Tue 19-Jul-11 00:40:43

Teenagers tend to have very black and white thinking over this sort of thing though, and if she has picked up on your shame and guilt, she may be very conflicted about it when it gets debated at school etc. Not to mention that she might judge you for it because of her lack of maturity.

But I think my main reservation is that it is basically none of her business.

ManicMiner Tue 19-Jul-11 00:41:58

I can't see what possible good it could do to tell her.

charleneanne Tue 19-Jul-11 08:42:31

Message deleted by Mumsnet.

Aworryingtrend Tue 19-Jul-11 08:46:43

Charleanne I have reported your vile post.

AnyFucker Tue 19-Jul-11 08:47:22

so have I

ScaredOfCows Tue 19-Jul-11 08:48:09

Me too. Charleneanne, what a disgusting comment, you should be ashamed of yourself.

ClaimedByMe Tue 19-Jul-11 08:48:46

Me too, no need for that post.

charleneanne Tue 19-Jul-11 08:49:24

Message deleted by Mumsnet.

pink4ever Tue 19-Jul-11 08:49:37

I have also reported charlenes post-the first time I have ever felt the need to do this on mn.
To the op-my mum told me she had an abortion. I was 19 at the time and pregnant myself. She did it to pressurise me into having one(I did). I wouldnt tell my daughter but thats just my opinion.

Athrawes Tue 19-Jul-11 08:49:52

Message deleted by Mumsnet.

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