Over one-third of women of reproductive age have an abortion by the age of 45. However, women who have chosen abortion are often absent from the public debate. In order to break the silence surrounding abortion, we will be featuring real stories from real women each Wednesday on our blog. If you would like to share your story with us or have it published on our blog, go to http://www.prochoice.org/pregnant/hotline/share.html.
The summer after my freshman year of college, I found out I was pregnant. Seeing as how I was only 18 and working just 20 hours a week at a tanning salon, I was not financially stable enough to support a child. My boyfriend worked a lot, but he did not have enough money for a baby. We went back and forth with our decisions: one day we’d want to continue the pregnancy, and one day we wouldn’t. We were fighting a lot and it was putting a lot of pressure and stress into our relationship.
After a week we finally decided to go through with the abortion. The morning that I went to the clinic, there were protesters outside the door. I was surprised to see that only one of the protesters was a woman, and the remaining four were men. I thought to myself how selfish they were to try to make me question my decision. They were men; they would never have to be in my shoes, pregnant. I was feeling scared when I walked into the clinic and saw about ten other girls who were around the same age as me. It was comforting to know that I wasn’t alone with my decision.
The procedure was quick, and everything was done before I knew it. When I walked out the door, an enormous amount of pressure was lifted off my shoulders. I felt like I could go on with my life the way I wanted to, and an unplanned pregnancy no longer had to define my future. To this day I do not regret my decision. My boyfriend and I are still going strong despite our rough time, and I’m now going into my junior year of college. I could never thank the women at the clinic enough. They really did a lot for me, and I know they’ve helped out many women.
I’m very passionate about being pro-choice. I believe all women should be able to make decisions about their body, no matter the circumstance. I’m very happy to live in a time where I don’t need to struggle because of an unplanned pregnancy. I had no complications with my abortion, emotionally or physically.
–Submitted by Lila* through our website
I am 32 and have three children. After a lengthy separation and amiable divorce, I met a wonderful man. We moved in together, and proceeded to live a rather full and loving life. We’d been careful, and when the condom slipped I picked up Plan B, but I was one of the women for whom it didn’t work.
My partner had decided long ago not to have children. He has a form of muscular dystrophy, and did not want his children to have to suffer from this disease as he has to. I respected that completely, as I’d long before decided not to have any more children.
I made the choice, and my partner stood with me. And thank the gods of all, we had the ability to make the choice! I had a lovely clinic, full of women who were so full of support and love, and a partner who was right there with me.
When the time comes, if my daughter needs to make this choice, I want her to be able to do so. I’ve been pro-choice for years now, one of those letter writers, phone callers, and general rabble-rousers (even before she was born). If I could give a huge hug to a woman in my position, like those ladies did for us, I would, even if that hug is just her knowing she’s supported by someone, somewhere.
–Submitted by Elizabeth* through our website
–Names changed to protect patient privacy