When I left Battle Creek Michigan I never believed that I had led a sheltered life. But the next few months proved me innocent. At one point I had random men walk into my room in the middle of the night looking for my roommate. When she wasn't around they wanted to know if I wanted to sleep with them for drugs like crack and heroine. I had no idea I was living with a prostitute. Another girl in the crew claimed to have been raped by two of the other crewmembers at the same time. I watched 4 of the guys jump a guy at the urging of a manager because he had bragged that he was stealing cash from the company. The victim was kicked off the crew after he had been hospitalized. Sex and drugs were what we lived for. I would get $15 a day for food. Most of the time I would put $10 a day toward weed with someone else. That only left $5/day each for munchies. I was always sharing a room with 4 or 5 other people of either sex. Whoever you shared a room with always had a boy/girlfriend and sometimes there would be 2 or 3 different couples having sex at the same time. It was like an orgy 24/7. No wonder I ended up pregnant.

When I finally figured out that I was pregnant I was freaking out. Here I was 2,000 miles from home and the only person that I could turn to was my manager. I couldn't tell my mom. My fellow crew mates thought it was no biggie. The guy that I slept with thought it was "cool" because he'd had unprotected sex all the time and he'd never gotten anyone pregnant (that he knew of). That wasn't scarry or anything. (It took me 2 years to get an HIV test I was so scared that I might be positive. Fortunately for me THAT test came back a big NEGATIVE) His attitude about the pregnancy was bad but the overall attitude was "abortion". For the other girls in the crew it became a second form of birth control. Everyone's attitude made me sick. Eventually I did get the abortion, but I never felt comfortable with my decision and I cried through the whole thing.

When I went to my appointment, my manager had already dropped off all of my other crew members. I was the last one. She gave me a lecture because she had to spend the crews money on the abortion and therefore they wouldn't get a picnic for Labor day because of me. She didn't even walk me to the Dr's door. She left me in the parking lot with a wad of cash and said not to worry she'd be back before they started and she would be with me the whole time. I told her I couldn't do it alone and that I wanted my mom. She didn't show up for 3 hours. The procedure didn't take very long and the Dr. was waiting when I got there so we rushed ahead. The whole time I was crying and pleading to wait just a few more minutes for my boss to get back. I told them that she promised. The Dr. couldn't wait and I went through it alone. I was left for over an hour in a private room waiting for my manager to pick me up. This was an extra hour than the alotted time for recovery. She was so non-chalant about everything after that that I only stuck around for a week before I called my mom and begged her for a ticket home. I spent 2 days after the procedure without food because she made me feel so bad about the money thing that I was afraid to ask for a draw since I couldn't work.

When the guys I shared a room with finally asked her for some money on my behalf she said that I had to come to her and even then she wouldn't arrange for me to get nutritious food. She told me to either walk the half a mile to the closest grocery store or I could get food from the gas station across the street. I just got so fed up and sick of the ill treatment but the last straw was when the guys I was sharing a room with decided to leave the crew. They had found girlfriends locally and the girls picked up their stuff in the middle of the night. The next day our crew was supposed to get on the road and meet back up with the big crew of 50 in another state. While everyone was loading there things in the cars I stood there in the middle of the parking lot and decided it was time for me to get out. The people that I liked were leaving and even they weren't "good people" They were all on coke, crack, or opium on a daily basis. So at that point I called my mom and went home.

I think that I was lucky to get out when I did. I am happy to hear about these websites and different support groups that are helping the stranded and hurt. I hope that my story can help or even change someone in a positive way. It took me 7 years to get over the emotional scars that the abortion left but I am a better person because of the experience.