She enjoyed the highlights of a privileged schooling career, top A rankings and made the Dean’s Commendation for academic excellence. She was committed, studious and paving her own path to her BSc degree.
Weeks of stressful studying and her semester tests were over. Cajoled by friends to “chill out”, she accepted the invitation for a night out of partying and “hanging out” with friends at the trendy, fashionable, safe party zones. She deserved it, she told herself.
But for Miss A (real name withheld to protect her identity), that night spun her ordered, predictable, safe life into a tumultuous vortex of date rape, suicide, pregnancy. Here she grants The Rising Sun newspapers and online media an exclusive, in-depth exposė into her quiet life to having an abortion and the tragic reality of it all.
“He joined my friends at our table and was handsome, sophisticated. They knew him, and it felt safe. When we were at the beach, it felt safe to be with him. I admit that I liked him. But he had slipped something into my can of cooldrink. Because I was literally knocked out. I know that I was raped but cannot remember anything. He acted as though nothing happened thereafter”. Miss A stated that she does not consume alcohol nor drugs.
“I was tested for sexually-transmitted diseases. I did this all alone because I was devastated and scared. I really had no one. Our university has a medical centre and professional assistance. Then I discovered I was pregnant”.
Pregnant with the baby of her alleged rapist, she contemplated suicide. But by her own reasoning and measures to live, though desperately clinging onto rapidly-depreciating hope, she sought refuge in a medical doctor for options. The legal course of pursuing rape charges was negated by her as she felt she could not remember anything and feared the humiliation that stigmatises female victims. Besides, she had always adjudged, those things happen to other classes of women.
During our interview, Miss A still loses her composure, slipping into uncontrollable states as she is ravaged by the memories.
“Abortion….That course of action was bandied around. I had read about it. Now I was going to do that. I had to, I saw no other exit strategies, no other way. I have socially-upstanding parents and my pregnancy would ruin their moral and professional standings. It would kill me as well as I had my degree to complete. I wanted to live – thoughts of suicide were gone and now my focus was on getting rid of my rapist’s memory. The baby was tearing at my insides, tearing at my soul, my whole being”.
She sought the necessary medical procedures and within the12 weeks limitation period, Miss A had an abortion. She collapses into a semi-conscious state during our interview, equally shocked and fearful anew that she had done the abortion.
“I killed my baby! I killed my baby!”, she whispered, almost inaudibly, her eyes dead to the recognition of the abortion, as if she did that now. “It rips me deeply to know that I did that. My baby was innocent to the turmoils I suffered.
I made up names I would have called baby: Serena Rose for a girl, Seran for a boy.
I scribbled out their names in big, bold letters on a page as I waited in the hospital. It is all I have of that memory. Both names are feminine and masculine forms of serene and peaceful. But what have I done? Could I have carried my rapist’s child to full-term and mother it?
I know that your readers are going to be judgemental. And as a rape victim, there will be that stigma that I was a willing sex partner on a night of partying. Rapists are not only ruffians dressed in hoodlum wear and hoodies, with balaclavas and armed with knives or weapons. They are horrid criminals as the well-dressed criminal I met that night. Using a date rape drug in my cooldrink.”
Miss A struggled many times during our interview, but the plausibility of wanting the public to know the most difficult decisions she ever faced was her driving force to complete the interview. “I am not a child-murderer. I know the pro-lifers will blow their nostrils and act holier than thou and righteous. But they did not face my dilemmas.
They can judge all they want now. I am living my own hell, despite getting rid of my rapist’s unborn baby. Do you know that I have endangered myself with this abortion? Although I can get pregnant again, (a few months ago I was talking about studies; now I am talking about getting pregnant again!) and this procedure was done at a reputable hospital, I still run the risk of infection, if I did not heal properly”.
Tell us about your emotional/mental well-being: “I am dead.”