Best decision of my life

by Anonymous but proud

October 15, 2018

I used to think having an abortion should be left as a last resort solution to extreme situations. I thought only irresponsible people have unplanned pregnancies, and I was too smart to let that happen to me. I’ve since become a more compassionate, understanding, and socially liberal woman. I have always been an atheist, well except for a few years where I prayed over and over again to receive 12 red roses from a boy. I don’t think I understood the concept of religion very well and accurately confused it for a wishing well.

My husband and I have been dating since he was 15 and I was 14. He wanted children very badly and I was on the fence about when. I’ve always had big goals for myself and I knew I wanted to get a good start on them before I had kids, but I knew I didn’t want to be an “old” mom. Throughout my youth I looked up to my great aunt. A woman who married young, divorced young, put herself through college, and became a wildly successful single woman until the day she passed. I had been wavering on whether I truly wanted to have a life like hers or if I wanted to bear children for my boyfriend.

Have you ever heard the adage that if you’re struggling to make a decision, flip a coin, because you’ll realize what you’re hoping for? Well in 2010 I found out two things at the same time. First, I had been accepted to university. Second, I was two weeks pregnant. I knew immediately I wanted an abortion, but my boyfriend did not. He vacillated between both options until I asked him if he wanted to travel, buy a home, move to other countries. He wanted all of those things, but I said it’s incredibly unlikely we could accomplish that if we moved forward with the pregnancy, so the appointment was booked for a D&C.

You may hear stories about the emotional trauma of an abortion, but I think that my trauma from the ordeal is different. I never questioned my decision, I never felt love towards the pregnancy, and I never felt lost. What I did feel and regrettably so was ashamed. I only just told my mom a year ago, have not told my dad, and my once supportive sister is now an evangelical Christian who likes to pop into my DMs and say how says she is that her kids don’t have a cousin. The shame I felt from my family was nothing compared to how the protestors made me feel.

I had private insurance, I was 20, and I was painfully broke, as was my boyfriend. I did not want my insurance to know about my abortion, so we paid cash. We had just received our last paychecks from our seasonal jobs. Together, we pooled the only money we had for the foreseeable future and paid about $600 for my abortion. We drove to the clinic, but chickened out and went to a nearby parking lot where a priest chased us down and I naively ruled down my window. He handed me pamphlets and a bracelet. We drove away and I began to look at the things he gave me. Horrible mutilated fetuses were printed onto beads which were carefully strung in order of gestational stage abortions. The judgment, anger, and disgust I felt scared me. Once I got my courage back, we drove back and a PP security person escorted me and covered me, while yelling at the protestors(maybe 13 of them). I then enter a vestibule with bullet proof glass, where I feel like a criminal. The procedure was incredibly painful,  but so was my IUD, so it’s probably just my cervix.

Regardless of all the scary and sad things that happened, I have never regretted my decision. In fact I have become even more happy with my choice. I have recently been able to help my younger sister through getting an abortion and it has made me realize how important it is for women to have the right to choose. Without having abortion available I would have become impoverished unable to attend school and left with fewer options to make myself an independent woman. Since my abortion I have married my high-school sweetheart, and he has been an amazing spouse and has been incredibly supportive. We are both in successful corporate careers, have two dogs, and have moved across the country and plan to do so again within the next couple years. We have decided to not have children and I had an IUD inserted 2 years ago. Should Roe v Wade be overturned, I feel that I would be left with no other decision then to undergo sterilization. I do not want to be sterilized but I refuse to be held captive by a lack of reproductive rights.

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