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My Parents Should Have Had An Abortion

Somewhere in the history of the world, there is a videotape. On it is my mother, holding one of my

In high school, using a phone that a friend paid for

teddy bears, clutched to her chest and refusing to give it back to me. I’m three or younger in the video. I don’t recall this interaction, but I do remember watching the tape at some point and thinking that my mother did, in fact, love me at some point in my life.

The only question then, is when did she stop?

I get attacked on twitter by the antichoice movement asking, “What if your parents had an abortion?” My response is typically, “That probably would be for the best.”

I’m not saying that I want to die, or I would rather not exist. I think on some level, I would still have come into being, just that I would have had parents. A mother who read me bed time stories. A father who didn’t drink every time he had visitation rights.

Instead, if the antichoice movement gets their way, they’ll be placing countless more children like me at risk. They’ll be subjecting youngsters to watching their mother attempt suicide. To watching their siblings get beat. To some day being 25 years old and waking up screaming from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and the recurring nightmares.

I hear rumor of child protective services stepping in. In my case, they didn’t. No matter how many times my sisters and I called the cops, there was never enough evidence. Even when we found my father’s stash of weed in his bedroom, we were told that we could have planted the drugs. When he was pulled over for drunk driving with me, not wearing my seat-belt, the cops let him off with a warning.

Years later, after a night of drunk driving hell and abandonment in the middle of nowhere, my father lost custody. Upon full visitation rights to my mother, things rapidly dwindled. I grew up in a house infested with fleas. In the backroom, maggots crawled across the floor. My mother left for weeks at a time, leaving my controlling sister in charge which directly resulted in my running away from home when I was thirteen.

I never wanted to return.

I moved out of my mother’s when I was still in high school. Because of her lack of parental guidance, a friend drove me from Michigan to Maine so I could look at the university I would later attend. He later made the same drive so that I could actually make the move. My mother barely said goodbye to me.

I do presentations to groups of people now: middle school students, adults, whoever will listen. I tell the younger generation that they can survive impossible circumstances. I share my backstory with them. I tell adult groups how to help kids who have grown up in my situation.

Me in college during an ice storm

The bottom line is that I know, beyond a doubt, tons of children are going through the same things I did. I know this because I’ve met them. I’ve held them as they’ve cried. I follow them on Twitter. They will not receive help. They’ll be lucky to graduate from high school. They’ll be even luckier if they go to college.

If the antichoice movement wins, according to them, thousands of lives will be saved. But what kind of life will they be forcing the children to live?

The lives that need to be saved are staring right in front of us. They’re quiet. They’re hurt. And at some point, we have to start stepping in to help them instead of forcing more people into those situations.

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