MINNEAPOLIS — In 2010, Jane had graduated from the University of Minnesota and was in her early 20's. Jane promised to share her story on the condition of not using her real name.
"I definitely wasn't ready to have a kid and I always took parenthood really seriously," she said. "I feel like a lot of people have kids that maybe shouldn't that don't treat them well or maybe abuse them, and I wanted to be the most prepared I could be in every way."
When she took three pregnancy tests, after feeling nausea from smelling the perfume she had worn numerous times before, she found out she was pregnant.
"I was a dancer -- I was working at DeJavu Minneapolis, and I found out I was pregnant backstage," she explained. "I was shocked. I left my shift early and I went to my boyfriend's house and we both cried, and held each other."
Jane said she knew the first of two of her decisions had to be made.
"The partner I had at the time wasn't right, nothing was right to give this child the life it deserves," she said. "So it was hard but it felt, not hard at the same time, because I'd rather regret something like this than bring a kid into a chaotic environment and regret that, because they don't deserve that."
Then in 2019, she was pregnant again.
"It wasn't the right circumstance, and again, I'm not going to be made by anyone on the right, or by anyone with any political leaning to feel bad about that," Jane said. "Because I think it's a lot more shameful to raise kids in harmful environments than to terminate a pregnancy. They were both really hard decisions, but it doesn't really keep me up at night, because I strongly believe I made the right choice."
Now, she's the mother of an eight-month-old boy, who came as a surprise after she and her partner had tried to have a baby several years prior.
"He's everything to me and it makes me feel good now that I'm in my mid 30's, that now I'm in a better place," she said. "Where my whole life revolves around him and is able to revolve around him."
Jane said she felt lucky to have been in a state where abortion access wasn't restricted, when she sought care.
"Growing up in a state like this and knowing that the care was there-- there was no panic," she said. "I suppose if I lived in a state where it was already restricted then I would be freaking out."
"Honestly if there was a way to magically remove the stigma, because honestly that's what makes things feel worse than they are," she said when asked if she needed anything after her abortions. "It makes people feel alone and stuff, 'oh I'm a bad person, I'm doing something wrong.' I just feel like if societally it was more seen how it is in a lot of countries in Europe as just healthcare and as something actually pretty mundane, then I think that would help a lot of people."
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