The news surrounding abortion laws across the United States is evolving daily. If you have any questions about the latest abortion law information, please do not hesitate to call Adoptions With Love.
In June of 2022, the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. This law previously protected women’s right to safe abortions. Now, abortion laws are determined at the state-level.
Many states have since made drastic changes to their laws, some implementing restrictions or full bans on abortion. Kentucky was one of those states.
If you live in Kentucky and you are facing an unplanned pregnancy, you may have questions and concerns about your rights. Kentucky abortion laws have changed quite a bit over the past year, but you still have options.
In this guide, we outline the abortion laws in Kentucky, how they may impact you, and the options have still have as an expectant mother.
Kentucky Abortion Laws Today
As of this writing, abortion is illegal in Kentucky. The state’s ban went into effect as soon as the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June of 2022.
This ban makes it a Class D felony for anyone to provide any types of abortions – procedural or medication – in the state after six weeks of pregnancy. The only exception to this law is in the case of a medical emergency, to save the life of the pregnant patient or to prevent permanent damage to a life-sustaining organ.
Kentucky was one of 13 states to pass “trigger” bans related to abortion, meaning they went into effect right after Roe v Wade was overturned. Kentucky’s trigger ban was previously blocked in state court. The state Court of Appeals has since lifted the block.
There are some abortion-rights advocates and lawmakers pushing back on this controversial decision. In November of 2022, voters in Kentucky rejected a constitutional amendment that would have declared there is no right to abortion.
What are the Options for Expectant Mothers in Kentucky?
While abortion is illegal in Kentucky, there are still options for expectant mothers. You may want to look into the abortion pill. This can be sent directly to you in your home. If you are facing an unplanned pregnancy in Kentucky, you can still choose from the following:
- Abortion in another state
Many expectant mothers consider parenthood when facing an unplanned pregnancy. It is a natural consideration. If you are thinking about parenting your baby, there are some factors you should consider before making your decision.
For example, how will you support your family? According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the average cost of raising a child from birth to age 18 is $310,605. That translates to about $17,000 per year. When planning to raise a child, you must consider the everyday costs of living expenses, clothes, additional food, and childcare.
Money aside, there are other important factors to consider before deciding to parent your child. Some of the most practical include:
- Can I provide my child with a safe and stable home?
- Who will care for my baby when I need a babysitter?
- Am I mentally and emotionally ready to raise a child?
- Who can I lean on for emotional support?
- What kind of life will my child have in my care?
If you are determined to make parenthood work, there are groups that can support you. The following may help along the way:
- Women’s, Infants and Children (WIC)
- Childcare Assistance Through the Office of Child Care
- Facebook groups for young parents, single parents, etc.
Traveling to Another State for an Abortion
You may know that you are not yet ready to become a parent. You might even decide that you cannot continue with the pregnancy. If you feel that abortion is the only path for you, then you may still find a way to get the procedure or medication. There is another way to obtain a safe and legal abortion: Traveling to another state. There is no law banning anyone from traveling to another state for any medical procedure. This includes abortion.
The states closest to Kentucky where abortion is legal include:
- Illinois – no restrictions
- Virginia – up to 26 weeks of pregnancy
- North Carolina – up to 20 weeks of pregnancy
- Ohio – up to 22 weeks of pregnancy
- Iowa – up to 20 weeks of pregnancy
Traveling to another state for an abortion is an option, but it can be costly and scary. There are groups, clinics, and organizations that can help. The National Network of Abortion Funds, for example, connects pregnant people with groups that can support the costs and logistical challenges.
Another option many expectant/birth mothers consider is adoption. This choice is a good option for those who are not ready to parent at this time, but want what is best for their baby. Adoption can offer many benefits for expectant/birth mothers. Some of these include:
- The opportunity to pursue personal and/or professional goals.
- Provides peace of mind, knowing your child is safe, cared for and loved.
- Comes with financial and emotional support from the adoption agency.
- Allows you to stay connected with your child’s family over the years.
Adoption is not an alternative to abortion. It is most often the decision that birth mothers choose instead of parenthood. If you are not ready to be a parent, but you know that abortion is not for you (or available to you), then you may consider this path.
With adoption, expectant/birth mothers have the power to choose the type of adoption plan they would like. Whether you want an open, semi-open, or closed adoption, your adoption counselor will respect and support your decisions. You will also be guided through the adoption journey every step of the way, ensuring that your needs are being met during this challenging time.
Reach Out for Free Support
The changes to Kentucky abortion laws can be confusing and overwhelming, but you do have options. If you are weighing your pregnancy options in Kentucky, do not hesitate to reach out to Adoptions With Love here.
All discussions with expectant/birth mothers are confidential and pressure-free. This is your choice, and we will respect any choice that you make.