“I didn’t feel shame then, I felt pride that I had made such an adult decision for the betterment of my life. I didn’t need to have a baby that young, nor by the man by whom I had gotten pregnant.”
I was 15 when I had my first abortion. I was deeply in love with the father of the child, but I was in high school and adamant on not becoming a teen mom. I had such high hopes for my life and I knew having a child at such a young age would undeniably hinder my dreams. I was too embarrassed to tell my parent[s]. My friends offered moral support as I dragged myself to school everyday, suffering through immense first trimester morning sickness. I was naïve and because I knew I had the option to undergo an abortion, procrastinated until I went in for the procedure and found out I had to have a second-trimester abortion, which would consist of a two-day procedure.
I didn’t feel shame then, I felt pride that I had made such an adult decision for the betterment of my life. I didn’t need to have a baby that young, nor by the man by whom I had gotten pregnant. In hindsight, I profoundly underestimated human life. But I don’t regret my decision, just that I waited so long to do it. Second trimester abortions are intense and daunting.
There were protestors outside the abortion clinic the day I was scheduled to go under. I was so afraid; I walked right by the clinic as if it weren’t my destination. Afraid I’d miss my appointment, I doubled back and tried not to look at the dismembered fetuses on the photos they toted so easily. It made the entire experience that much worse.
The hardest part about making the decision to get an abortion was being in love with the father of the child and letting go of the innate joy I felt having a life inside me. It feels golden.
With these current bills being enacted into laws, I realize how blessed I was to have access to safe medical care. The procedure is terrifying enough, but I didn’t feel like I was jeopardizing my life. I was more so concerned for my reproductive organs, but didn’t face any complications.
I don’t believe legislators should have a say over what women do with their bodies especially when women bear the brunt of parenting. I fear women will go to unhealthy lengths to get abortions if women are criminalized for seeking the procedure. History has shown what happens to women with limited options.
To other women who may be feeling shame about the decision to abort, I think you have to make the best decision you want for your life because no one can live your life but you.
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