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I had an “illegal” abortion in 1969.

My boyfriend didn’t want to get married. In those days being an unwed mother was pretty much out of the question.

After several false leads that sounded really unsafe, my boyfriend was given the name of a pastor in the suburbs of Chicago who was doing abortion counseling. We went and were given the name of a doctor who did abortions safely.

The appointment was made and I was dropped off on a corner in another suburb where I’d never been before. I waited there alone until a stranger picked me up. I was blindfolded and taken somewhere about 10 minutes away. Brought into an apartment. In the second room, was a table and the doctor dressed in scrubs ready to begin the procedure. I don’t remember much of the actual surgery I was so scared. Nor after so much except that I rested there for a bit, then they took me back to that corner. Eventually my boyfriend returned and picked me up. It cost $200 I believe.

Three years later that same boyfriend and I married, and proceeded to have 3 children. We talk about it from time to time. After having children there was a time I grieved a bit for that loss, but it was the right decision for me for us at that time, and I was a lucky person in finding that doctor and having a safe procedure. Too many women in those days were shoving knitting needles etc. up their vagina’s sometimes dying in the process.

Everyone should be able to decide if, when, how, and with whom they start or grow a family.

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