G E R M A N Y
"At 17 I was young, naive, impressionable, and involved in an emotionally abusive relationship. I became pregnant.
I was scared to tell my mother. She had my brother at 18, and although she was able to manage, I knew she wanted my life to look different than hers.
Just as I'd feared, she told me to abort the baby. Scared, I agreed to do so. I live in Europe, and here, you visit the equivalent of Planned Parenthood for a 'counseling session' with a counselor who will give you a certificate stating you've undergone counseling and wish to proceed. Once you receive the certificate, you have three days to complete the medical procedure. This gives the pregnant woman time to reflect.
In retrospect, what annoys me the most is how easily I got my certificate. All the counselor asked me was why I wanted to abort. I replied 'I am 17. I have nothing to give this child.' And just like that - I had it.
NOBODY ever told me that help was available. No one told me I could manage, or that people would help me.
I felt conflicted; I wanted my baby, I didn't want an abortion. I called a Christian pro-life charity that helps pregnant women in desperate situations. The lady who helped me was an angel. She cancelled my abortion at the clinic for me, gave me a train ticket, and paid for my accommodations until everything cooled down. I left that same day, and told my mom over the phone that I was keeping the baby.
Eventually, she came around, and when I called her from the doctor's office one day, she came immediately. The doctor wasn't able to find my baby's heartbeat at 10 weeks. My baby measured around 8 weeks, and was no longer alive.
I cried, and so did my mom. She was inconsolable. The fact that I lost my baby sent me into a dark place, but the lovely lady from that Christian Organization reminded me that this was God's doing, not mine. I did not abort my baby, but God had other plans, and to trust them. She is right. I chose LIFE!
I have since finished my education and met a wonderful man. 27 days after my 24th birthday I gave birth to our beautiful daughter. I have come to terms with what happened when I was 17 years old, as it is all part of God's plan for me. I have forgiven my mom. She is the best grandmother to our daughter and full of love and compassion. This experience changed us both.
I am so glad I stood for life nearly all by myself when I was so young, and I continue to do so today. I want others to know that there are people who will help. You are not alone!"