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Thu, Jun 17, 2010
Her World
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She spent $8,000 on medical and hospital bills post-abortion
by Zarelda Marie Goh

Now, whenever I’m feeling angry or upset, I meditate – it helps calm me down and even lulls me to sleep. I’ve also stopped smoking and drinking.

 I’ve spent about $8,000 over the last two years on medication and hospital bills. The abortion and follow-up treatments cost about $1,000. The rest of the money went towards the consultations and medication for my post-abortion  abdominal pains. I can’t believe I wasted so much money on medical bills – I could have used the money to travel.

John and I got back together, about the same time that I started creating my own bucket list. One day last year while we were at the zoo, I mustered up the courage to hold his hand and he didn’t let it go. I think both of us knew we were ready for a relationship again. I believe I had also proved to him I was more emotionally stable.

I used to cry at the slightest reminder of my abortion, like seeing pictures of babies but I don’t anymore. I also stopped bombarding him with text messages whenever he couldn’t meet me. I became more cheerful and independent. As we grew closer, he invited me over for meals with his family as we did in the past. It’s been a year now and things are going well, but he is no longer my main pillar of support and I’m not so clingy and needy. We’re learning to be more patient and tolerant with each other. I try to control my outbursts and he tries to be sensitive to my feelings.

If I could turn back the clock, I would have kept the baby regardless of whether John married me or not. I think I’d be a lot happier. I regret not taking enough time to think through the procedure. Maybe I would have been more mentally prepared or maybe I wouldn’t have done it at all.

I want other women in my shoes to know what I went through so they can make an informed decision. I didn’t have anyone to share their story with me. I still think of my baby once in a while but I’m focusing on looking ahead and letting go of the past. My main goal is to build a stronger relationship with John and save up so we can have a family. We’re working towards marriage. My relationships with my family and friends have also improved. I attend family gatherings and socialise with my friends again.

I was surprised by the psychological toll the abortion took on me. It consumed me. I wasn’t as strong as I thought I was and I underestimated the sadness, self-pity and regret it would unleash within me. It was the worst emotional rollercoaster I’ve ever had. I handle things like office politics a lot better now.

These matters are trivial compared to what I’ve experienced. I remind myself I didn’t go through hell just to be beaten down again when I’m stressed over a difficult situation at work. Having survived a living hell has made me a stronger, better person. I want to look at the experience from that positive perspective.
Recently I went for the first-month birthday party of a friend’s baby. I didn’t feel sad. I could even carry the baby and take photos of her. It was a personal test and I passed with flying colours. There’s no turning back now. HW

*Names have been changed to protect identities.


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  • Samaritans of Singapore (SOS): 1800-2214444
  • Singapore Association for Mental Health: 1800-2837019
  • Sage Counselling Centre: 1800-5555555
  • Care Corner Mandarin Counselling: 1800-3535800

1. For more of this story, get a copy of the June 2010 issue of Her World, Singapore’s No. 1 women’s magazine. Her World is published by SPH Magazines and is available at all newsstands now.
2. Zarelda Marie Goh is a features writer with Her World magazine by SPH Magazines.
3. Check out more stories at Her World online,




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