A pro-choice story:
I found out I was pregnant after being in a relationship that lasted for a few months in college and wasn’t very serious. He had cheated on me and the whole thing was a blur to me until I took the test while I was home in PEI for Christmas break that year. Luckily, in my situation, my parents were young and had experienced the same type of feeling twenty-some years previous (also in college in another city) and they were the ones who presented to me the idea of an abortion. So I went back to Halifax, and booked an appointment through a referral. It was as easy as that for me.
Spoiler alert: I didn’t go through with the abortion… but here’s why (and the point of my story)
I got to my appointment that morning, registered shortly after 6:30am. I was one of seven girls there that day. For those of you who have been to the abortion clinic in Halifax, you know about the crazy maze they take you through to get to the actual clinic. It was scary but also put me at ease knowing that this was for my protection, and the doctors. When you register, they tell you that you’ll be talking to a nurse, and a counselor before the actual procedure, so when I went in to speak with the nurse, I told her that I was unsure of my decision, and she said “that’s okay – that’s why we’re here”, and told me that we weren’t going to go through with my procedure that day but she would reschedule me in three weeks and if I still wanted to go through with pregnancy, that I wouldn’t even have to call to cancel, I could just simply not show up. I still had to meet with the counselor before leaving. The counselor also made me feel extremely comfortable when she came into the room. I explained my situation and immediately started asking questions about having a baby as a single mother. This woman was so gentle and understanding in the way that she talked to me, and understood me. She smiled as I asked questions, and provided me with endless pamphlets on every option that was laid out for me. She gave me her card and said I could call her any time, and she also promised she would check in with me in a few days (she did). The next person that I would talk to was the doctor performing the procedures that day. I didn’t know what to expect when the smallest, most adorable woman walked in the room. She sat down and said, “I just wanted to be able to meet you and say congratulations that you’re having a baby”. We chatted for a few minutes and then she offered to be mine and my new baby’s family doctor.
I will never forget the three women that I met in the abortion clinic that supported me regardless of my decision, and the access I had as far as the procedure itself, and the emotional support that I had afterwards. It wasn’t an easy decision to make, and every woman that goes through this has AT MOST a month to make this important and terrifying decision. No one but you should give a shit what your reasoning is for having an abortion, no matter what age, race, or religion. We all just need help – help to make a decision, help to know our resources, and help emotionally through it all.
Having the choice and the services and support to assist you in making that decision makes a hard situation just a tiny bit easier. It truly pains me that PEI greatly lacks the services to help women out in these times – we all deserve that.
Anonymous – PEI