Speaker's Age: 24
Story Told In: 2005
18

I grew up in Mississippi and went to school in Boulder, CO, which is where I was at the time. I was with a boyfriend who I was very much in love with. I was 22. I was using a diaphragm and it obviously didn't work. My mom had two [abortions], my grandmother had one and my great grandmother had one, so I knew all these stories going into it. It's like a curse or something.

I went to Planned Parenthood to get the information for a doctor but the actual Planned Parenthood in Boulder didn�t perform abortions. So I went to... I guess it was a private clinic. They were very nice and helpful, and very systematic. My boyfriend was totally supportive. And my mom was too. And I always knew that if this were a choice I would have to make, what I would do. But then when you're with somebody you love like that, then you question, well maybe I could just have a baby. He said that whatever I decided to do he would support. My mom said the same thing. I felt very supported and I'm very fortunate to have that emotional and financial support, because when I went to the clinic, a lot of women didn't.

There are always rumors of girls who had money that were able to get doctors to perform them at home. But in my hometown there was nobody-- you would have to drive to the next state. Mississippi is the most notoriously anti-abortion state I think there is. I'm fortunate to have not been at home when it happened. And I do wonder... I wouldn't be surprised if some of my friends from home didn't tell me. If I just assume that I'm the only one [who had an abortion], but actually they have.

I told my boyfriend and I told two close friends initially, although in retrospect, I wish I hadn't told them because of the way they treated me. I mean all of us were very open-minded girls... one of them was just particularly insensitive and cracked a couple of really inappropriate jokes that were horrifying. And I was really sensitive about it. I mean the fact that I can sit here and talk about it openly is nice, but I was really upset. Just because you're pro-choice and it's OK with you, doesn't mean you're going to be emotionless about it. I have these "what if" kind of thoughts, particularly because it was with someone I care so much about.