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I want to share my story so that people understand the dangers of restricting abortion access. I don’t want anyone else to ever go through what I’ve gone through.

by Amy

April 27, 2019

Content Warning: rape

photo by Elizabeth Rudge

Anyone who opposes abortion access should know what it’s like to have an illegal abortion. They should know that criminalizing abortion doesn’t stop people from having them; it only makes it more dangerous.

 

I grew up in Mexico, where abortion is illegal and very stigmatized. When I was 16, I was sexually assaulted by a family member and became pregnant. My body became numb when the nurse told me I was pregnant; it just didn’t feel real. I didn’t know what to do or who to talk to. All I wanted was to finish high school and get a college degree, but most importantly, I didn’t want to have a child from my rapist.

I knew abortion wasn’t legal but that didn’t stop me.

 

I searched the internet and found an unlicensed provider who was willing to help me. I did anything I could to raise the money for my procedure. I sang in buses and cleaned people’s houses for almost three weeks.

On the day of the procedure, the provider asked me if I wanted to call someone before he began: “You may wanna call someone just in case you don’t wake up.” I called my grandma to tell her how much I loved her. I was terrified, but I decided to have the procedure anyway.

Although I was sedated, I ended up waking up toward the end of the procedure. It felt like my insides were burning, I thought I wasn’t going to make it. After everything was done I went home to recover alone.

Later that night I was taken to the emergency room by a neighbor due to a severe uterine infection with a high fever and a hemorrhage. The abortion was dangerous, and I nearly died because it had to be done secretly, without the proper safety precautions. After my recovery, I decided to move to the U.S. to finish my education.

 

Shortly after moving, I learned that Wisconsin has one of the toughest abortion laws in the country, so I decided to start volunteering at Planned Parenthood with my friends. I wasn’t familiar with Planned Parenthood at the time, but I knew I wanted to be an advocate for reproductive justice.

With time, I became more comfortable talking about abortion, but for some reason I still didn’t feel confident enough to tell my own story. Shout Your Abortion helped me realize that I am not alone, that abortion is normal, and that I have nothing to be ashamed of. Reading the stories of all those women made me feel stronger and empowered, and allowed me to heal. Suddenly, I wasn’t afraid anymore. I want to share my story so that people understand the dangers of restricting abortion access. I don’t want anyone else to ever go through what I’ve gone through.

Remember that our stories are ours to tell. We’d love to hear your story too!