Sarah’s Story

I found out I was pregnant when I was 18. I was less than two months into my Freshman year of college, and I had been with my boyfriend for only 4 months. While I felt that I loved him, the thought of starting a family with him was terrifying to me. I saw all of my hopes and dreams for my future falling away, and in their place I saw myself dropping out of school, living with my parents, and the stress of it all likely pulling my boyfriend and I apart. It wasn’t an easy decision, and I won’t say I never ever regretted it, but I decided that abortion was the right choice for me.

It’s really only recently that I’ve realized how hostile our society is to women who make the choice that they have every right to make. I felt guilty, not because I thought I had made some huge mistake, but because I’ve been told since I was a child that women who choose to have abortions are killing their children and making selfish decisions that only benefit themselves. When I really think about it, I know aborting was the right decision for me. If I had given birth at 18, I know I wouldn’t have finished school. I would have become a burden and a strain on my parents, because I wouldn’t have been able to support myself and my baby on my own, and my boyfriend at the time would have felt he had some duty to provide for us and probably would have dropped out of school as well.

When I look at the track my life has taken since that time, there’s no question in my mind about what I should have done. I graduated from college last year, at the top of my class, and landed a great job. I ended up meeting an awesome guy in school (the would-be father turned out to be a liar and a cheater – who would tell me that it would be better to be linked to him for life?), and we’re getting married next year. I’m starting graduate school in the fall, and I’m going to be a college professor some day. My life would have taken a much different track had a chosen to have that baby.

And to be clear, yes, I do want children some day. I know another portrayal of pro-choicers is that they’re all unnatural freaks who hate babies. I can’t wait to start a family. But I intend to do it the right way – when I’m settled, ready, and can be overjoyed about welcoming my first child into the world.