Mine was legal and yours should be too

by Rachel

August 17, 2022

In 2016 I found myself pregnant by a man I knew there was no future with, having recently started a new job (that had amazing potential, but I was still in the beginning phases) and I was not yet legally divorced from my husband (who was not the father of the child).  The man who did father the child was older than me, established, making good money, and I later learned also married (and not willing or actively working on a divorce as he had presented to me).  My pregnancy was a huge shock to me as I was told early in my reproductive years by more than one dr that the likelihood of me getting pregnant and keeping a viable pregnancy was slim due to some medical issues that cause me no other discomfort or issues.  In my experience, I rarely used birth control with my husband and never became pregnant.

The timing for my pregnancy was in no ways ideal.  The man who was the father made it clear at this point that he could not have a child with me (due to his family situation that he had kept hidden to that point).  Still, he told me the decision was mine but that he would support me.  I was extremely lucky in that I discovered my pregnancy quite early (around the 4-5 week mark) but still had to move quickly to take advantage of the pill abortion.  When I hadn’t made a decision in 24-hours the man who had impregnated me changed his tone.  Suddenly he would declare me an unfit mother if I went through with it, he would drag me to court where he claimed he had « friends », he would deny he was the father and force me into the time and effort and cost of proving it, he would tell mutual coworkers what a slut I was.

His threats were empty, but the fact that he deployed them was simply for intimidation.  He certainly enjoyed having sex with me, but felt his material things and his « good name » were so much more important.  Despite his threats I did put serious thought into my options.  And decided to end my pregnancy to give myself the best options for my life.  Being in MI, I had a relatively easy ability to get an abortion.  There was a mandatory appt when they gave me mandated documents about religious options and adoption (I threw them in the trash when I left just like a number of women before me had).  I had a mandatory wait period which brought me right to the edge of the window to use the pills in MI.  The abortion nurses and staff were so kind and knowledgeable.  I would never be able to thank them enough for their kindness and care.  At the time of my procedure, MI had also legislated that I was mandated to view an ultrasound.  The nurse who did it was sympathetic and told me while she was legally obligated to do it, I didn’t have to look.  I did though.  I knew why I was doing it and I knew I felt no connection to the blur of cells on the screen.  I couldn’t even distinguish what was my body and what was supposed to be the other human.  The cost for my visit and the pills was $500.  The father of the child paid for it, taking out small amounts of cash over a period of days from different atms so his wife wouldn’t suspect anything.

When I took the second pill, I had the worst cramping in my life but was fine within 48 hours and had no ill effects or continuing issues.  Within a few days I passed an item that 100% did not look anything like what the abortion billboards claim.  There was nothing distinguishable about it, it was simply a mass of cells that maybe possibly would have made it to a viable pregnancy.  I almost laughed because the anti abortion activists go out and shoot deer and waterfowl with more living characteristics than that.  I never doubted my decision and the only sadness I have is that I didn’t tell people the truth and speak about it as if it was as common as it truly is.  I wish I had done that sooner.

The man who fathered my child was a conservative Republican.  He is the typical established, white man with guns who is so concerned about the 2nd amendment he will simply vote for anyone with an R behind their name to protect that right.  He was and is still married to the person he was having an affair on.  But the right I took advantage of, and he took advantage of when he needed it, has been slowly stripped away by the people who he elected to office.

I do not and will never regret the decision I made, for 100s of reasons.  I will not stop telling my story and have recommitted to finding ways to support abortion rights both monetarily and with my time.  The ability that I had to better my life with a choice should always be available to those who need it.

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