My Sister is Still Alive

by G

May 31, 2022

Content Warning: mention of suicide, rape

My older sister is 4 years older than me.  She wasn’t diagnosed with schizophrenia yet, we didn’t know.  She liked to drink and do (minor) drugs to self medicate.  She had irregular periods, and had a short lapse in taking birth control which she had been on since she was a young teenager.  She was already 4 months pregnant when she found out she was pregnant.  Drinking and smoking heavily already certain she had an unviable pregnancy that she didn’t want anyway.  She did harder drugs.  She tried to kill herself right in front of me, her fiance and a friend.  Our Aunt wanted to adopt the child.  She would not have survived the pregnancy.  She would have killed herself the moment she wasn’t watched.  How could she bear another 5 months.  Sober.  With the voices in her head telling her to kill herself that we never knew about.  There is no doubt in my mind that she would’ve died and if she managed to go full term or at least a viable stage, the child would not have had quality of life.

Our Mother had converted Catholic after our little sister died a year after that.  She had a forced abortion when she was about 14.  She was raped by her father.  And not the first time.  Nor the first birth.  When I turned 30, I learned I had an older brother.  Who was raised by his pedophile father to be a pedophile himself.  My Mother was pregnant with him when she was 12.  She didn’t even know what was going on with her body, she had barely even started her periods yet.  Forced to wear corsets to hide it.  My grandmother had faked her own pregnancy and everyone told my mother she was crazy when she said she thought she had a baby boy too.  My Mother didn’t have choices. When her younger sister was 14, she had a pregnancy (consent), their parents wanted her to abort.  My aunt refused and she birthed my cousin.  My Aunt could no longer bear children.  She had a choice.  She chose my cousin.

Our lives have been shaped by these pregnancies and their outcomes.  It is no simple thing.  But one thing is more important than any other, free will.  My Mother did not choose to become pregnant, and her father did the procedure himself.  He could have killed her.  She would have chosen to keep her children.  But then, I myself and my sisters may not have ever been born, as this was all close to a decade before us. These events shaped us all in different ways.  My Mother and Aunt are very much Pro-Life.  But myself and my sister are very Pro-Choice.  I have 2 sons, 10 years apart.  I don’t do drugs, have mental health issues and am in a steady loving relationship.  I chose to have a family.

I didn’t have a forced pregnancy, which, living in the state of Indiana, could be the reality of many.  Consent matters.  Our rights to choose the outcomes of our lives, how our bodies  are treated.

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