The following story comes from Gulf Coast Storks in Southwest Florida.
When I found out I was pregnant, I immediately went to my doctor to get an ultrasound. As a student who worked full-time, I knew I was not in a position to have a child. I felt like I only had one option. I asked my doctor if he would be able to perform an abortion. When he told me that he wouldn’t because he didn’t believe abortion was good for women or their babies, I completely understood.
I didn’t even believe abortion was right, but there I was, asking for one. I just really didn’t see another way out.
While I was looking for an abortion doctor I remembered this blue van that I had seen driving through my neighborhood. I knew that it was some sort of mobile doctor’s office that offered resources for pregnant women and I wondered if they would be able to refer me to an abortion doctor.
Two days later, I was leaving for work and I saw the van again. I quickly wrote down the number and gave them a call. A woman answered and I told her why I was calling. She asked if I was sure I wanted to abort my baby.
When I heard the words ‘your baby,’ I felt a lump in my throat. I paused. Had I really thought this through?
Through tears, I told her why I couldn’t be a mother. But, I explained, if my circumstances were any different, I wouldn’t choose abortion. She asked me if I would meet with her to discuss more options. I agreed. I was relieved to know that I could finally talk to someone about this.
When we met, she handed me a notebook and a pen and told me to write down my thoughts as we spoke. We talked about the magnitude of the decision and what the outcome of each option might be. For the next hour, I wrote down the pros and cons to abortion, parenting, and adoption. To be honest, I hadn’t thought about adoption and I knew very little about the process.
When we laid out the pros and cons of each, I found that, for me, adoption had the fewest cons. While I know it will come with its own challenges, I also know I am not ready to be a mother and I don’t believe in abortion.
After talking to the counselor, it was clear that abortion was not the option for me. She gave me information for organizations that will help me as I continue with my pregnancy, as well as with the adoption process. She told me that I could call her anytime I needed.
I realized that all I needed during that difficult time was to have someone to talk to who could guide me through my decision. The counselor didn’t try to talk me out of an abortion, but instead, she showed me that I really did have other options. By simply talking to me and giving me information, she empowered me to make the most life-affirming choice for me and the baby.