I got pregnant the first time I had sex. I know because that’s the only time we didn’t use birth control. I didn’t even think that was possible–the very first time?
I was 18 and a freshman in college. I was shocked and disbelieving and put off confirming my fears for as long as I could. But once I faced facts, I knew I was in no position to raise a child. My boyfriend and I were already growing apart, and he didn’t want a child. I knew I was too immature to be a mother; I also knew I would not be able to have a child and give it up. That would have broken my heart.
I didn’t tell my mother what was going on. I was too embarrassed by my stupidity. My boyfriend had enough money for us to fly to Washington D.C., the closest place to get a legal abortion at that time.
It was not easy or pleasant, that experience, but I have never regretted my decision. I took motherhood far too seriously to entrust it to my 18-year-old self. I wanted to do it when I could provide for my child and do a good job of parenting. And I did when I had my son in my 30s. Every young woman should get to make that choice for herself.