I was living with my high school boyfriend, going to community college down the road, and working at Subway part time to try to buy a new car. I wasn’t very good at remembering to take the pill, hence the pregnancy. I had this feeling in the pit of my stomach and of course my period had stopped so I bought a test. I went inside my boyfriend’s bathroom, saw the results, and my heart started pounding immediately. I went back inside our bedroom and didn’t say anything. He just looked at me, asked what was up and placed the test on the bed. He turned back to the TV and sighed. He wasn’t one of those guys that pressured me into doing anything I didn’t want to do. He respected whatever decision I made.
Initially, I convinced myself I was actually going to have it, but give it someone who wanted to adopt. I saw ads people had posted online with a customized profile and background, seeking to adopt Juno-style. I never had any sincere emotional attachment to my pregnancy, I just didn’t know if I wanted to go through an abortion. I wasn’t aware of medical at-home abortions or that they were even a thing. In my head I was thinking I was going to have to have it sucked out of me and I was nervous about such an invasive procedure.
However, during the time I thought I was going to give it up for adoption, I was only four weeks pregnant, frantically trying to think of what I was going to do. The first couple I called told me I was too early in my pregnancy for them to commit to anything and said they would have to wait until a certain stage to be certain this was something I wanted to do. They must have gone through something like this before because she seemed well prepared for any kind of disappointment for someone who wanted a baby so badly. I would soon learn that her hesitation was the smarter choice.
I phoned a gay couple living in Manhattan and talked to them over the phone. They were VERY interested in being a part of my pregnancy at the time I thought I was willing to go through with everything. I spoke with them regularly and told them my situation and they were very excited which is something I still think about today. As hard as it was to decide to get an abortion, it was just as difficult telling this couple that their dreams of being parents was going to be further delayed.
When I told my dad and my grandmother the situation, they were really upset and asked me what I wanted to do since they knew it was still my own decision. At this point, I had given it a lot more thought and decided that I was in no position to carry a pregnancy to term only to give my baby up to someone else. What was the point in going through all that if I didn’t have to? I was in college, I had things I wanted to accomplish, I had goals and dreams that would be that much harder to fulfill if I decided to go through with a pregnancy.
When I learned that a medication abortion was an option, I was a little more relieved. I didn’t know if a surgical abortion would hurt or make me feel uncomfortable and I much preferred dealing with everything at home than going through such an invasive procedure.
I stayed in bed at my grandmothers for the duration of the abortion, and she helped me feel as comfortable as I could feel while I was going through the painful cramping. Everything was over in about a 24 hour period and with all the controversy that still surrounds abortion, I still think about it today and how things might be different had I made a different choice. I, however, do not regret my decision.
There is no fancy story behind why this happened or what I decided to do, however, I’m open and honest about my experience. I have absolutely no regrets and can’t imagine what my life would be like if I was personally responsible for the survival of another human being. I only share this to encourage other women to not be ashamed of the circumstances under which they had to make a difficult decision like this, one I’m sure still emotionally affects many women who wish they were able to fulfill their pregnancy. My only goal is eliminate the stigma against women who have abortions as anything to be ashamed of because it isn’t. It’s my body and I know I did what was best for me at the time I chose do it. I switched to a more reliable form of birth control that does not require my daily attention and have chosen to wait until I’ve graduated college to have a baby. It’s one thing to be pro-life for yourself, but another to tell women what they should and should not do with their reproductive organs as it pertains to the production of life. Pregnancy is not something that should be treated as a “punishment” for having sex and women who do not feel they are ready to be mothers should NOT be coerced into motherhood. I believe this sets a child up to endure bad parenting from the mother as well as all the resentment she has for having to take care of a child she did not feel ready to have to begin with. Not to mention that postpartum depression is something that affects the mother and the child simultaneously.
I absolutely plan on having children someday when I’m ready and have accomplished everything I have sought out to fulfill so my baby and I can have the best happiest life possible.