“They [said], ‘We’re just going to terminate the unwanted pregnancy.’ ”
Unsure what those words meant, Destarra replied, “OK.”

Her mom took her to the clinic and filled out the paperwork; Dad never really knew what was going on. A staff member escorted Destarra to the back of the clinic, to an examination room.

“Take off your clothes and put on this gown,” the clinic worker told her. Though Destarra didn’t recognize what was happening at the time, someone performed an ultrasound. Destarra never saw the monitor— and never asked to.

“We’ll remove the tissue and there will be some bleeding, but you’ll be fine,” someone else told her. “Then, in a week or so, you can go back to school and continue the activities you were doing before. Now, just start counting down from 30. . . .”

“I don’t know how far I made it,” Destarra says. “And when I woke up, I didn’t feel too good. I was throwing up.”

The nice clinic workers gave her lemonade and crackers, and her mother was waiting at the door. They spent the next few nights in a hotel room, Destarra says, speaking little of what had just happened. Two weeks later Destarra was still feeling sick and was still bleeding. She was told that her experience was normal, that her body was “working to get back on track.” And that was that. No one mentioned another word about her unwanted pregnancy. Nothing about sex ed or birth control or waiting for marriage. Nothing.

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