I’m not asking your advice so much as your opinion. A few months ago I had an abortion. I couldn’t tell my parents about this — they probably would never have spoken to me again. I’m twenty-one years old, a junior in college, and a friend fronted me the money for the procedure. While I’m not a virgin, the pregnancy was the result of a date rape — the guy spiked my drink at a party (I’d never been out with this guy before and I couldn’t find him once I discovered I was pregnant) and I didn’t even have a memory of having sex with him. In no way was I either ready to become a mother or willing to bring a child into the world who’d been conceived under such terrible circumstances. The procedure was physically easy and went well, no pain, no bleeding. I have no regrets, but I do think of the tiny being who lodged in my uterus for awhile and wonder what sort of person he/she might have developed into. I’m quite emotional on the subject and wish I could be open with my parents.
My Body My Choice
Dear My Body My Choice,
I’m sorry you had to go through both the date rape and the abortion. I heard recently that the wise person is one who can hold two differing and opposing truths in his/her head simultaneously. It’s my belief — and you, or anyone else reading this column is welcome to disagree — that women have the right to terminate their pregnancies, preferably within the first trimester and optimally within the first six to eight weeks. However, I also believe that abortion is a very sad and tragic act, and totally understand the divisions around it in our country. Who wants to stop a beating heart? No one really, and yet we must have the freedom to provide abortions to women who have been raped, experienced incest, or are mentally and physically unable or strong enough to undergo a pregnancy. What we need most are good clinics nationwide to help advise women of all ages on contraception and reproductive health. In the final analysis, only the woman herself can decide what’s best for her and her baby. It’s the law of the land. Without it, we’ll be looking at a lot of ugly and unnecessary deaths as women take matters into their own hands and terminate pregnancies in secret, dangerous ways. You did the right thing.
All the best,
REACTIONS TO SECRETLY GAY GIRL
Dear Secretly Gay,
In my opinion it’s your duty to tell your parents. They’re the ones who brought you into the world, who raised you, fed you, took care of you, loved you. You will see: if they have love in their hearts, they will react better than you think. You won’t know unless you try and it’s worth it for all involved. Best,
– Carla R. Dallas, TX
Dear Secretly Gay,
If you’re smart, you won’t tell your parents. You say your mother would have a heart attack and your dad is a Mike Pence type who believes in conversion therapy. You know what they will do? Take your beautiful love and tear it to shreds. Why on earth subject yourself to that? I say keep your business to yourself and don’t come out of the closet until you’re good and ready. I wish you well. Sincerely,
– Jason P, San Jose
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Disclaimer: CD Knowles is not a doctor or psychotherapist. Any opinions expressed on Knowles Knows are just that — opinions.