I was 20 years old and my boyfriend of two years had just broken up with me. I was studying for a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and working full time. I felt like my life hadn’t even started, yet I was going to bring another life into this world. The first year and half of our relationship was incredible, but at times I think I loved the father more than I loved myself. I’m only barely starting to realize how unhealthy that was. There was no doubt in my mind that he was going to be the man I was going to marry, my only problem was that he was still a boy. At the time that we had broken up not only had I lost him as my best friend, but my relationship with his family had declined and I felt as if that contributed to his motive for ending the relationship. I was emotionally and financially unstable. I did not have the support of his family, and very few fully supported me on my side. I think the moment I realized how negative the situation was that I would be bringing my child into was when I met up with his mother to discuss things. I’ll never forget the look on her face when she stared me in the eyes and said “you did this on purpose,” and later on in the conversation, “you’re ruining my son’s life.” I could not fathom why everyone else didn’t love this child as much as I already did. When I found out I was pregnant I was already 9 weeks along. My period was always notoriously late, and with the added stress of the break up I was convinced that my hormones were simply freaking out. It wasn’t until I started throwing up every time my coworker would warm up his breakfast sandwich with bacon, that I thought I should take a pregnancy test.
As soon as I confirmed I was pregnant I told the father who of course didn’t believe me and required I take a test in front of him. Once he saw the little blue plus mark he broke down. He ran to his computer and started looking at planned parenthood. HE DIDN’T EVEN ASK WHAT I WANTED. In his mind there was only one option for us. And then he kissed my stomach, and even though we were broken up my heart knew exactly what I wanted. That week I went for a sonogram by myself. I saw my child for the first time (although I must admit it looked more like a guinea pig than a human being), and I heard it’s heartbeat. I texted the father that I had fallen in love, abortion just wasn’t an option. He was furious, cursing at me and accusing me of single handedly attempting to ruin his life and destroy everything he’s worked hard for. He begged for me to get the abortion, and promised if I did that we could work things out between us, that we could try again. When we met with his parents they couldn’t have agreed more with him. They asked that if I wanted them to be open to me keeping the child, then the father and I needed to attend a counseling option my doctor’s office offered that goes over all of your options. The father and I went, and we still could not see eye to eye. Due to me finding out so late in the game that I was pregnant, I had only 3 weeks before the end of my first trimester, at which point the abortion would be more difficult to perform.
As you may have figured, I wouldn’t be writing this if I hadn’t in fact gone through with the abortion. Ultimately, I am grateful I had the OPTION as I believe nothing and no one can tell me what I am going to do. At 11 weeks and 5 days I had a D&C procedure performed completely under anesthesia. I woke up sobbing for the father and my mom, the only 2 people who in fact know that I went through with this. I sobbed that I never got to hold or even see my child. I sobbed because I felt a pit in my stomach, the place my child once was.
Despite all of this, I am pro-choice. I believe that no group of people can or should dictate what you can and cannot do to your own body. I didn’t even know what was best for me, so how would a complete stranger, the church or even our government know what was best for me?
My biggest frustration with today’s society is that the institutions who are against giving women the right to choose, see women who chose abortion as heartless. They think it’s a decision that we made on a whim. They see us as emotionless, cruel and sinful human beings. But, what they don’t see is the positivity that can also come out of such a negative situation. I no longer have to deal with an manipulative and emotionally and verbally abusive relationship, that I not only had with the father, but as well as with his mother.
As an intelligent and hardworking 21 year old I have the time to pursue my dreams and make a better future for myself and my future children. Regardless of my actions and my decisions, I am still a mother. I still feel great loss, and I still am mourning the life I consciously ended. Abortion is not the best option for everyone, but it was the right choice for me.