Actress and artist Jemima Kirke, 29, is opening up about an abortion she had in college in the hopes of shining a light on how we perceive reproductive issues in this country. The “Girls” star shared her story in-depth in a new PSA.
The video is a part of a larger campaign by the Center for Reproductive Rights, which has already received some star power from the likes of like Meryl Streep, Mark Ruffalo and Amy Poehler. In it, Kirke describes a time in 2007 while she was attending college in Providence, Rhode Island. She got pregnant with her boyfriend at the time and decided that neither her life nor her relationship was conducive to raising a happy and healthy child. As a result, she made the decision to exercise her right to an abortion. Making the call to have the procedure was only half of the battle.
Kirke didn’t want to tell her parents that she was getting an abortion. This meant that she would have to pay for the procedure out of her own pocket – a difficult task for a young college student. Although Time reports her parents are well off, with her father being the former Bad Company drummer Simon Kirke and her mother Lorraine a successful fashion designer, she was too ashamed to bring this to their attention.
In order to pay for the abortion, she and her boyfriend scrounged up as much money as they could.
"I realized if I didn't take the anesthesia, I would be able to afford to do this," the 29-year-old mother of two said in the video below. "And the anesthesia wasn't that much more, but when you're scrounging for however many hundreds of dollars, it is a lot. I just didn't have it. It's the obstacle and this stigma that makes these things not completely available... But there are little hoops we have to jump through to get them."
The PSA closes with Kirke revealing that she tries to tell her story as much as possible, especially to women, in the hopes that it will reduce the stigma surrounding reproductive choices. She said that she hopes one day her children will grow up in a world without these gender hurdles making it difficult to live life as a woman.