A mother whose daughter survived an abortion says she will “always regret” taking abortive drugs to end her baby’s life.
Shannon Skinner, 20, followed medical advice to abort her unborn child after complications with her first baby, but baby Amelia survived and is now four weeks old.
Skinner says she told herself “it wasn’t a baby yet”, when she went through with the procedure at eight weeks.
However, now she explains: “Watching her sleep, I can’t bear to think of her not existing. For a long time I felt guilty, but now I just feel relief.”
Skinner told her extraordinary story to a national newspaper following Amelia’s birth by caesarean at the beginning of this month.
She suffered difficulties with her first daughter Lacie and, when she became pregnant unexpectedly with Amelia, doctors advised her to abort.
After going to a Marie Stopes abortion clinic in Bristol she took two abortion pills, despite having doubts.
However, home pregnancy tests in the following weeks showed she was still carrying the baby and a 3D scan changed her outlook.
She said: “I was out of my mind with worry that the abortion pills had affected the baby, but it wasn’t until I saw the 3D scan of my daughter on Christmas Eve that I fell in love with her.
“Once I’d seen her face, everything was different.”
Medics said the abortion drugs created a higher risk of problems for the baby’s development and so again advised Skinner to have an abortion, at around 20 weeks.
But she told the Daily Mail: “To see your daughter’s face and then be told you can still go through with an abortion…how can you?”
“To survive the first abortion, my daughter obviously wanted to be here and I couldn’t go through with a surgical abortion. It didn’t matter to me if she was born healthy or not”, she added.
Although she suffered difficulties in the remaining weeks of her pregnancy, Skinner gave birth to Amelia on 1 May.
Skinner will have to wait to see if the abortion drugs have had any health effects on Amelia, but she is delighted that her baby is alive.
“Every time I look at her I think: ‘She really shouldn’t be here.’ But now that she is, I wouldn’t have it any other way.”