I was in college and found myself pregnant after a sexual assault. I know sometimes women say they were "assaulted" to cover up a pregnancy, but I really was attacked. I contacted an organization that purported to offer assistance to pregnant women and called in good faith. I went to the appointment alone because I did not have any family or friends I could trust to help me through this.
The "counselor" pretended to be willing to talk about all my choices, but I soon realized that she was doing anything and everything to steer the conversation away from abortion. While I did not go in with my mind set to have an abortion, her actions and judgmental behavior caused me to feel unsafe and betrayed. I demanded to be let out and I ran from the office. She began calling me non-stop and even came to my house. Although I was in my twenties (legally, an "adult"), she betrayed me by telling my grandmother (the number I gave her). My family did not speak of the situation but I was shunned for many, many years after the betrayal.
I did ultimately choose to have an abortion. As a result of my experience, though, I did not feel safe seeking help or support from anywhere else and went through the entire process alone. Of course, I could never talk about it after the fact because most people would have not only understood this "counselor's" actions, but applauded her efforts to emotionally badger me during one of the most difficult moments of my life. I have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as a result of my assault and I believe it was exacerbated by subsequent events at the Women's Center.
Thank you for creating a website about this issue. I imagine there are many, many women who have similar tales.
March 12, 2007
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