Readers like you keep news free for everyone.

More than 5,000 readers have already pitched in to keep free access to The Journal.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can help keep paywalls away.

Support us today
Not now

'I was nine weeks pregnant when I took an abortion pill - after staring at it for hours'

“I was in a very bad situation where continuing a pregnancy just wasn’t possible, health wise or financially.”


Through the telemedicine service Women on Web, asked women who got in touch with that website – who had either taken the pill, or requested it but changed their mind – to get in touch. An Irish mother in her 30s who ordered an abortion pill late last year responded to that request. Here’s her story, told anonymously.

WHEN I BECAME pregnant last year, I was in a very bad situation where continuing a pregnancy just wasn’t possible, health wise or financially.

I was on the pill but it had failed. I had been quite ill the previous year and had been off work for a few months at that time.

I used to work in a relatively physical job but had to quit because I developed a long term illness and could no longer do it. At the time of getting pregnant, I was looking into retraining and finding a job more suitable to my circumstances (a non-physical role).

No support

I was also in a shaky relationship, so there was no support there. I already had one child from a previous relationship with no financial or any other kind of support from the father, so every expense in relation to that is on me.

In the circumstances I was in at that time, I was struggling to pay for food, utilities and a roof over our heads.

I knew that if I continued a pregnancy I would become very ill again (it was already taking a huge toll on me) and that I wouldn’t be able to get a new job more suited to my health which I desperately needed. It was extremely stressful.

I couldn’t afford to travel for an abortion. My friend had an abortion from pills she received through Women on Web, and told me of her experience with them, that they were very professional and trustworthy. That encouraged me to get in contact with them.

They sent me the pills for a reduced donation that I could afford. I was very relieved to have that option while also being sad that it was my only option given the circumstances.

So scared

I was terrified of taking them because I was so scared of something happening that would require medical treatment. What would I say? What if I didn’t even get the chance to call an ambulance if needed? I had to take the pills alone.

I was nine weeks pregnant when I took one mifepristone after staring at it for hours. Twenty-four hours later, I put four misoprostol under my tongue and another two four hours after that.
Then the cramping started. It was pretty bad for about half an hour and then it stopped cramping and the foetus expelled. I had an overwhelming sense of relief that it was all over and all was ok.

Making a difference

A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article.

Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can make sure we can keep reliable, meaningful news open to everyone regardless of their ability to pay.

I’m very happy that I made the decision I did. It was the right one for my existing child and I. Our current circumstances would be impossible if I hadn’t done so.

No regrets

I have no regrets and I’m very grateful to Women on Web for helping me when I desperately needed it.

However, I really wish I could have accessed that from a local doctor who could have explained to my face what to expect and not had the fear of not knowing what kind of reaction I’d get from medical staff if I needed attention had anything gone wrong.

Although there was a debate surrounding the Eighth Amendment at the time, it had no impact on me because I was consumed with stress from every angle, I couldn’t notice anything outside of what was happening to me.

The lost decade is over: Our 7.8% GDP growth last year was comfortably the highest in Europe>

An Irishman in Brexit Britain: ‘The atmosphere has changed since the vote’>


About the author:


Read next:


This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
write a comment

    Leave a commentcancel