I can remember the exact moment…the EXACT moment I became pro-choice.
I was 15 and a freshman in high school. I lived in a shitty town in Missouri. It was a stereotype of a shitty small town driven mostly by high school football and a factory—need a better picture? Well…think Steubenville. High school athletes were gods. Women, girls, really, fell at their feet. And yet they always wanted the handful of us who had no interest.
I had no interest.
I didn’t really go to parties, I had a small group of good friends and we would mostly watch movies or go to the diner and eat a bunch of desserts on a Friday night. But, as the cliché seems to go…one night I went to a party. I don’t have many details from that night. I don’t know if I was just an inexperienced drinker or if there was something more but I can remember his foul breath on my face as he hurt me. I remember waking up at 4am on an unfamiliar floor in an unfamiliar basement surrounded by other girls, used up.
I guess I put it out of my memory, because I bounced back quickly. And then I found out I was pregnant. I was terrified. I wanted to get the hell out of Missouri—I had big dreams of going to NYU—I was already working on my admission essay. I could not have a baby. I could not grow up as a waitress at that damn diner and watch my future maybe-son play football and worry about what his nights involved.
My parents were nice people and I know they wouldn’t have thrown me out or anything but I also don’t think they would’ve supported the choice that was clear to me. It was already may….I’m not really sure how the scheme occurred to me but I applied to some summer program for high schoolers in Chicago and I got in. My parents were so proud.
I went to the clinic with my older cousin. It hurt. But it also felt good to have options for my future again. Two years later I got to escape Missouri. I’ve never really told anyone about this before.
[Submitted from San Jose, California]