Abel

Abel, a young male nurse from Ethiopia, tells a story he witnessed in 2016.

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    OTALT/Helene Karlsson

Here, Abel recounts a traumatic experience that changed his view on abortion while working as a nurse at a health center in Addis Ababa:

One day, a woman showed up at my office with a desperate look on her face. She told me that she wanted an abortion because she had become pregnant outside of marriage. I sympathized with her, but I knew that this was not within one of the legal exceptions to have an abortion, and I sent her home.

I felt guilty because I could have avoided this terrible outcome if I had offered her the abortion.

Abel

A few days later, the same woman came back to the clinic. She was in the emergency room. She had tried to self-induce an abortion, but it had gone wrong. Unfortunately, she passed away later that day due to complications of the abortion. I felt guilty because I could have avoided this terrible outcome if I had offered her the abortion. After that episode I decided to never turn down a woman again, even if that means lying on her behalf in order to secure her a safe abortion.