I Was A Disney Princess, I Had An Abortion, And It Almost Ruined My Life

Recently, Planned Parenthood tweeted, ‘We Need a Disney Princess Who Had an Abortion.’ No, we do not.

On Monday, I got up and went to work. I wondered if anyone would notice that I had been crying all weekend. I put on my costume. I worked hard to put my eye makeup on to cover the tear stains. I fixed my hair, brushed on my blush, applied lipstick, and tried to smile through the song and dance. I sang “So This is Love,” and “How Lovely It Will Be,” but it felt like an out-of-body experience.

 

At 18, I received a great job working at Walt Disney World as a singer. More than 5,000 people auditioned to fill 10 positions for singer/dancers (five women and five men).

I performed five shows daily in front of Cinderella’s Castle, singing such classics as “When You Wish Upon a Star,” and “Some Day My Prince Will Come.” This was a dream come true for me. I was frequently hired to sing in the recording studio as the voice of Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty. I was paid well, had my own apartment, and enjoyed life independently as a professional singing princess and entertainer.

Shortly after starting my contract at Disney, I met a charming, 22-year-old prince named Dave who worked as an engineer in the theme park. We were highly attracted to each other and spent most of our time off work together. Dave eventually moved in with me.

Within a few months of living under the same roof, I became pregnant. This is where the fairy tale between Dave and I took a turn. He made it clear that he had no interest in “settling down” or making that type of commitment. In fact, he let me know he was experienced with knowing about “places” that would take care of the “problem.” I soon realized he was not my Prince Charming.

I had always wanted to be a mother. But I had learned early in my life from family members who championed the rhetoric of Planned Parenthood that becoming a mother before doing what was perceived as successful was unacceptable. I remember conversations as a little girl where professing my desire to grow up to be a mother repeatedly met this type of response: “Honey, you can be anything in the world. Why would you want to be JUST a mother. You can be a mother AFTER you become successful.”

With this conversation in mind, an unwilling prince, and the echoes of anti-mother messaging steering me away from motherhood “too young,” I had an abortion on a Friday. I immediately regretted it. I curled up in the fetal position in my bed sobbing through the entire weekend.

I Just Wanted to Die, Too

Dave had friends over and played video games in the room adjacent to mine, seeming to party in relief as I tried to silence my louder cries in a pillow. My mind swirled with thoughts of wanting to rewind my decision. I kept reminding myself that just two days before, I had been pregnant. I felt hollow inside.

On Monday, I got up and went to work. I wondered if anyone would notice that I had been crying all weekend. I put on my costume. I worked hard to put my eye makeup on to cover the tear stains. I fixed my hair, brushed on my blush, applied lipstick, and tried to smile through the song and dance. I sang “So This is Love,” and “How Lovely It Will Be,” but it felt like an out-of-body experience.

I continued to sing on the castle stage daily. Dave continued to play his games. I was like an empty automatic doll trying to sing princess songs. Dave was happy, relieved, and distant. This performance went on for about 7-8 months. My legs were giving out and my voice was not as strong because I cried too much on my days off.

Eventually, I gave notice and quit my dream job, hoping to find healing somehow. I was crushed and broke up with the man I once thought I loved, knowing it was necessary. Dave was relieved and detached as my feelings toward him cooled. With the beautiful castle days behind me, I could no longer muster the energy to sing or whistle a happy tune. I walked away and wanted to die, as Cinderella’s Castle (my happy place) faded in the distance.

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