She Offers Love, Understanding, and a Safe Place for Women Undergoing Unwanted Pregnancies
30 January 2020 | The Pride | By Patricia Siswandjo
By 19, she had gone through two abortions.
She had a difficult childhood. When she was 14, her father left, leaving her mother to provide for her family.
Frustrated that her life was falling apart, she would lash out and that led to a fractured relationship with her mother.
She dealt with it seeking solace in a string of unhealthy relationships.
But that soon came with its own set of problems: She got pregnant — twice.
She was alone, scared, and unsure of what to do, which led to her fateful decisions.
Speaking to The Pride, Jennifer Heng, now 44, recalled: “As a teen, I didn’t really know how to process the feelings I had towards what was happening at home.”
She was 17 when she had her first abortion. As the unborn baby was already 22 weeks old, Heng underwent induced labour. She spent eight excruciating hours giving birth to a still-born boy.
During her induced labour, Heng called out in desperation for help, but no one was in the clinic to hear her. The medical staff had gone for lunch and Heng did not have anyone with her for emotional support.
She thought she would never have to go through that trauma again.
But barely two years later, at 19, Heng aborted her second baby, who was six weeks old.
She wanted to move on, but was haunted by her memories
Heng felt relieved at the end of each abortion, thinking her problems were solved.
Those feelings lasted only for a while.
She explained: “Initially, I felt a great sense of relief, and thought I could move on. But that soon turned into a nagging guilt and fear that I was not a good person.”
Heng added that she was often plagued by dark thoughts. She grew to fear children, and hated being around them. She was easily irritated by conversations about pregnancy or childbirth. She also feared what her future partner would think of her.
She added: “I felt that the abortions created new fears and worries in my life.”
For about five years after her second abortion, Heng felt lost and unsure of what to do with her life.
Everything changed for the better when, in her mid-20s, she attended a Christian course.