I am 51 years old, a minister, married with 3 stepchildren, and have had two abortions: one at the age of 18 and the other at 21.

Both pregnancies were the result of rape. In both instances I was in such denial about what had happened and about the potential for pregnancy that I did not seek medical attention or counsel until it was almost too late to make a decision about what was going to be happening to my body and to my life.

I chose abortion over suicide. Twice.

Those were the most difficult decisions I’ve ever made. I commemorate them each year with great sadness. But, also, with tremendous gratitude for having had the freedom to make those decisions for myself – and for having had access to impartial/non-moralistic/safe medical attention.

I don’t want anyone to have to go through what I did. But I want all women to have the freedom to make their own choices about anything that affects their bodies.