Storyteller: Veronika Granado

Location: San Antonio

Age: 19

Why are you excited to participate in Youth Testify?

I am excited to participate in Youth Testify to change the way we talk about abortion. In my family and community, it’s not really talked about — it’s an avoided topic. I feel that once we start sharing our stories, it will create a chain reaction and get other young people to talk about their experiences. By sharing, our abortion experiences, we change the way people talk about abortion. This way we can portray the truth because the current image of abortion can cause people to be afraid of having one. I joined Youth Testify in hope this will achieve more people seeking abortions if they need them, instead of fear due to false information.

What would you like to share about your abortion story?

My abortion story was one of the best, most adult decision I’ve ever made. I’d just of accepted into college and was ready to move cities when I found out I was pregnant. I knew what I had to instantly to make a smart decision for myself because I was nowhere near ready to have a child. I barely knew how to take care of myself emotionally and financially. I had to get the judicial bypass and was constantly worried that I wouldn’t get it, and my future was destined to be a struggle. I ended up getting the bypass and continued my education into electrical engineering, a job that I knew would be the best for my future family and myself. Now that I’ve had the abortion, I can say that it was the most mature decision I’ve ever made. I can help other young people who are going through similar experiences as mine share their story and continue the cycle.

How are you excited to organize your community to eradicate abortion stigma?

I’m really excited about informing people in my community about the stigmas and stereotypes. I am trying to show people the truth about abortion and explain how these stigmas affect our abortion experiences. I definitely want people to know the truth in case they need to get an abortion anytime in their life. The stigmas and stereotypes out there are definitely scary and I hope to crush those stereotypes with the real facts.

What do you wish other young people knew about seeking abortion?

I want other young people to realize they are definitely not alone. Tons of people have abortions and it’s okay. Young people don’t realize they are not alone because few people talk about it. Young people definitely have to face a long list of barriers, but the most prominent one I had to face was having a judicial bypass. That experience was definitely the most scary for me when having an abortion because the decision falls into the hands of a judge. My life falls into the hands of the judge. Having to worry if I was going to get the bypass or having it rejected was nerve wracking because my future depended on it. It was also a race against time because the longer I waited, the further along I was, reaching the limit of when I could take the medication abortion pill. The time delay also impacted the amount of money I would have to spend because the surgical procedure cost more. Like a lot of young people, I didn’t have a job, and that made the experience even harder.

Why are you sharing your abortion story?

I am sharing my story because I want to see the 1 in 4 statistic in real life. I want to meet more people who’ve had abortions. When I had my abortion, I didn’t have anyone to talk to about it. I was afraid of being judged or that someone would force me to change my mind. My abortion was a life saver for me, and a blessing! I want more of us who’ve had abortions to speak about it so we can all make a difference, one community at a time, one story at a time.

Stories by Veronika Granado

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