• Hannah Landry

Roe's Life

Updated: Dec 14, 2021

  • Griswold v. Connecticut (1965) set the stage for Roe decision, as it reversed a criminal conviction for providing contraceptives to married couples

  • Eisenstadt v. Baird (1972) set the same standard for single individuals

  • Roe v. Wade was decided on January 22, 1973

  • Filed by “Jane Roe”, a Texas woman seeking a way to terminate her pregnancy

  • Texas law at the time only allowed for abortions in the case that the mother’s life is at risk

  • Rendered similar laws unconstitutional

  • “Jane Roe” is now known as Norma McCorvey, a waitress who sought an abortion in her home state of Texas, but filed a suit against the Dallas County District Attorney Henry Wade

  • Norma had casual affairs with men, as well as women, through her adolescent years and was briefly married at age 16

  • Before her suit, she gave birth to three children, all of whom were put up for adoption, including the child that lead her to the lawsuit

  • By the time the case made it to the Supreme Court, Norma had already given birth and never had an abortion

  • After the landmark decision, Norma began volunteering for the National Organization of Women in 1981

  • She remained pro-choice until she became a “born-again Christian” in 1995, which forced her to switch her views and denounce her sexuality against her will

  • She remained opposed to the decision in Roe v. Wade until her death in 2017

  • Norma never wished, nor planned, for her case to become a national issue

  • Even with the popularity of the case, Norma still never got the chance to have an abortion, which was all she ever wanted

  • Her story of how she became pregnant with her third child, included claims of rape and from being with a partner that she believed herself to be in love with

  • She recanted her claim of rape in 1987

  • Her final romantic relationship with her partner, Connie Gonzalez, ended after 35 years with her having to publicly renounce her sexuality

  • Norma grew up attending Catholic schools and even a reform school

  • There were reports of physical abuse from her mother for her sexual activity with both men and women

  • She couldn’t find a true home on either side

Work Cited

Langer, Emily. “Norma McCorvey, Jane Roe of Roe v. Wade Decision Legalizing


Nationwide, Dies at 69.” The Washington Post, WP Company, 18 Feb. 2017,




Planned Parenthood. Roe v. Wade: Its History and Impact - Planned Parenthood.



Prager, Joshua. “The Roe Baby.” The Atlantic, Atlantic Media Company, 9 Sept.




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