What’s the Use of Private Insurance If You Don’t Feel Safe Using It?

July 29, 2013

“Do you have insurance?” the nurse asked me as I checked in for my abortion. “Yep,” I replied and handed her the card. She asked if I was the policyholder; I was not. “Just so you know,” she said, “the insurance company will send a list of benefits used to the policyholder and they will see your abortion listed. Are you okay with that?” My heart sunk. While my parents identified as pro-choice, I hadn’t told them about the decision my partner and I made to have an abortion. They didn’t even know I was pregnant. I was planning on telling them, but not until I was ready.

I took back the insurance card and gave her my credit card, which I was privileged enough to have. The cost: $450. It was unreal. How was I going to afford that when I only worked part time for $8.50 an hour at a retail store? Here I was with insurance that covered my abortion-related care, but I couldn’t use it without my parents finding out. People who are lucky enough to have private insurance through another person, like a parent or partner, should feel safe enough to use it.


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