Emalee’s Story

All of my life, I’ve felt that there was something “different” about me. During my senior year of high school, this difference was beginning to take a solid, very negative form which I later found out to be bipolar disorder. I went through periods of intense depression, self-mutilation, and eating disorders followed by feelings of infinite power, energy, and strength. During these “up” moods, I would feel compelled to do risky and dangerous things, including promiscuous sex.

I was seventeen years old and, through my own mania and low self-esteem, had become involved with a grown man who lived across the country. On the occasion of his second visit to my area, I became pregnant. I found out about the pregnancy after approximately ten weeks. During this time I had also had sex with my ex-boyfriend (who was and still is my very best friend).

Abortion was a choice I had made before I even started having sex. Though at the time I made many reprehensible decisions about my body and my sex life, I can at least give myself credit for honestly considering the consequences of my risky behavior before I engaged in it. Upon the realization that I was pregnant, it took me all of twenty minutes to find a clinic and arrange for a friend to escort me to the procedure. Being seventeen and only a senior in high school, I needed financial support from somewhere and decided to call upon my statutory rapist (we had always had consensual sex) to wire me the money. He did so within two days, and within the week I was in a women’s clinic the next state over.

This was perhaps the most comfortable clinic I have ever been in, and the staff made me feel more relaxed than I had ever felt even just going for a routine check-up or to get on birth control. The procedure was uncomfortable but bearable, and it was made all the better because I had a clinic volunteer holding my hand through the entire thing. I slept the entire car ride home, walked into my bedroom and slept all afternoon and into the next morning. The next day I woke up feeling relieved and ready to resume my promising life.

Since then, people have attempted to make me feel guilty about the decision I made but I simply can’t. I did the right thing for me and I refuse to be ashamed of rationally, realistically, and respectfully dealing with the consequence of my errors in judgement. My abortion wasn’t my mistake. My low self-esteem was.