Thursday, December 8, 2022

Blog Tour: Unburdening


Date Published: October 4, 2022


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Teresa Benitez—an engineer, doctor, and professor—had three abortions between 2004 and 2022. Although she was against abortion until 2004, her first pregnancy awakened her deepest fears: was she good enough to raise a family? Or would her unresolved childhood trauma, and resulting mental illness, render her incapable of love?

In Unburdening, each pregnancy termination is meticulously described. The aftermath of each abortion is explored, including the mystifying blend of relief and distress that often remains after the procedure is over.

A moving memoir infused with poetic prose, Unburdening is a story of motherhood, abortion, and mental health. It delves into generational trauma, survival, love, self-forgiveness, and healing.



Waiting for the first abortion to begin

“I decided to study the room. Maybe it would distract me from myself. There was a single medical table. The edges around me were blurry. Was the silence so absolute that it affected other senses? Focus. I spotted some unfamiliar medical devices. Tall, pristine shelves, mostly empty. There was a single window, too high up on the wall. A door to the left of the window. A basin shining in a corner. I felt my body sinking in the middle of the room that seemed larger than necessary. Shadows began to occupy the emptiness between each physical item, as if someone was turning the lights off one by one. The sensation of impending doom compressed my chest until my breath became irregular, and I wanted to run away. Run away from these shadows, from the window too high up on the wall, from the ultrasound machine turned off, from the pristine shelves that I might stain with my blood.”

About the Author

Born in Puerto Rico in 1984, Teresa Benitez has a B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering. She was an engineering professor for nine years. Teresa currently lives in Gainesville, Florida, with her ten-year-old daughter and three cats.

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