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Saturday Night Live alum Leslie Jones reveals she had three abortions in her twenties

Jones says ‘to this day’ she donates money to Planned Parenthood for teaching her how to practice safe sex

Meredith Clark
New York
Tuesday 19 September 2023 20:24 BST
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Related: Leslie Jones gives impassioned comedic speech about abortion laws on SNL

Leslie Jones has opened up about her experience with abortion in her new memoir.

In her book, Leslie F*cking Jones: A Memoir, which was released on 19 September, the Saturday Night Live alum revealed that she terminated three pregnancies throughout her early to mid-20s.

In an excerpt obtained by Page Six, Jones wrote she became pregnant multiple times during her on-again, off-again relationship with a man named Richard Brooks. The first time she had an abortion was when she was 18 and Brooks was 27.

According to the outlet, Jones said that their relationship lasted “too many years” and they did not use birth control. By her mid-20s, the comedian had undergone three abortions when she came to the realisation that abortion “is not a birth control method”.

“My mom got sick early in my life and she wasn’t there to teach me about [sex education],” Jones wrote, noting that her mother suffered a massive stroke when she was young. The Ghostbusters star added that she wished she had been taught properly about pregnancy prevention and admitted she just “didn’t know any of that stuff”.

She eventually learned how to practice safe sex and prevent pregnancy through educational services offered by Planned Parenthood. “I still give money to them to this day,” Jones said about the non-profit. “When I went to Planned Parenthood, I finally learned how to prevent pregnancies and take care of myself. Thank God for those people and what they do.”

Speaking about her choice not to have children, Jones recently revealed to People that she developed a fear of childbirth early on, after watching a video in her ninth grade health class. “I remember running all the way home and I looked right at my mom and said: ‘I will never do that!’” Jones recalled.

These days, she’s remained steadfast in her decision to be child-free, saying: “I didn’t get married and have kids, but I don’t know if that’s what I wanted. I’ve always wanted to take care of myself.”

Jones has previously spoken out against conservative legislators passing restrictive abortion laws across the United States. In 2019, she criticised Alabama’s Human Life Protection Act, which sees women who are the victims of incest or rape unable to get abortions. During an appearance on SNL’s “Weekend Update” segment, she dressed up as one of the characters from the dystopian TV series, The Handmaid’s Tale, to slam the abortion ban.

“We are all handmaids now,” she said. ”My name actually is OfJost. But I don’t know how much of a good babymaker I’m going to be, because my eggs are dusty as hell. But I’ll give it a shot.”

Jones then took off the robe to reveal a shirt with the word “Mine” on it and an arrow pointing down. She proceeded to speak how the abortion law is only the start of women’s rights being taken away.

“The next thing you know, I’m at Starbucks and they won’t take my credit card because I’m a woman, instead of the regular reason which is I don’t have no money on me,” she said.

Jones then showed a picture of the 25 white, male Alabama state senators who passed the vote. “Why do all of these weird a** men care what women choose to do with their bodies?” she asked.

“When women have a choice, women have freedom,” Jones continued. “The fact that nine states are doing this means this really is a war on women. You can’t tell me what to do with my body.”

In June 2022, the US Supreme Court voted to overturn Roe v Wade when it ruled in favour of the state of Mississippi blocking abortion at 15 weeks of pregnancy. The ruling struck down a 50-year precedent established by the landmark Roe v Wade court case, which had guaranteed federal protections for abortion access since 1973.

Since then, more than a dozen states have banned abortion or issued restrictions to abortion access.

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