Ashley Engbrecht

Share your story

At the young age of 17, I was the victim of sexual assault. There is nothing more terrifying than someone taking your control from you in the most viscious way possible. As a result of this incident, I became pregnant. I was so ashamed and full of fear, as I didn't want this for myself or ask for it in any way. I didn't tell anyone but my mother. I didn't tell anyone as I feared backlash from friends who were clearly against it, but I knew what was right for me, and it was not to graduate high school carrying a child of rape. I was able to receive access to misoprostol at a planned parenthood facility. Two days later I miscarried in the most painful event I've ever experienced. My mother rushed me to the hospital to receive treatment. The judgement and negativity I received from certain nurses was almost unbearable, I am glad I was doped up on morphine for most of the night. All I felt from then on was shame.. Am I monster? I am now 23 years old and I look back, healed but scarred, and see what I have accomplished, who I've become, and who I will be because I had the opportunity and choice to change my destiny. I wasn't destined to be a mother at 17. Many times after my experience I had friends go through the same thing. Only then did I share my story for the first time and realize I wasn't alone. What I did should not be shamed. I will graduate from college in May and start graduate school for Early Childhood Education in the fall.

2010 United States

What were your feelings about doing the abortion/s?

I felt so many different feelings at once. I was confident in my decision but I've never felt anything so heart wrenching in my life. It was still I tough choice, but one I am glad I made.

How did you do the abortion?

Painful, but I believe the pain I experienced is not common. I had no complications following the process.

What was your situation at this time?

How did other people react to your abortion?

I have kept it very much a secret. I have only told people who I knew would be supportive, as I feared ridicule. 6 years after the abortion, I finally told my father. He was very compassionate and supportive, which surprised me with his conservative views. Many of my family and friends to this day do not know.

legal/illegal

What is your religion?

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