One of the many, many reasons I firmly declare, “I am a feminist.”
I’m Having an Abortion this Weekend: “I am no better or worse than, say, a woman who gets pregnant when she wasn’t on the pill, had sex without a condom and, for any number of reasons — lack of information, lack of transportation, lack of funds or just plain old stigma — didn’t take Plan B. She is just as entitled as I am to make my same decision or a different one, and she deserves the same access to a safe abortion that I do if she chooses one, free of judgment — because this is not a question of who is better or worse. It’s a question of who should get to exercise their rights, and the answer is every single woman.”
I’ve never been in this situation, but I’ve seen my aunts, mother, sister, teachers, friends, coworkers want to become/try to become/worry about becoming/and become pregnant. I’ve witnessed the discomfort, the joy, the fear, the uncertainty. Although I’ve never experienced the physical aspect of pregnancy, I have experienced the emotional/mental aspect of babies. As an aunt and an older sister, I’ve spent hours and days and years with babies who become toddlers who become adults. I’ve changed diapers and burped after nursing and read bedtime stories and helped with homework and held hands and washed faces and demanded naptimes. I’ve driven to practices and waited in the school parking lot and stood outside of high school dances and taken pictures at graduation. Being a caretaker is hard. Being the responsible one is tiring. You need money, and patience, and resources. All the time. If someone isn’t ready for parenthood, for guardianship, for another life under the umbrella of their own life, they should have other options. More than just adoption. Do you know the toll pregnancy takes on your body? Do you know how risky childbirth is? What do you know about women’s health? I support abortion. I am pro-choice. It should not be a procedure only available to the privileged, who live in the right state under the right government with the right health insurance.
Like the author of the above piece, I want to be trusted enough to make my own decision. I want to be trusted enough to have all the possible options available to me. I want to be trusted enough that I am doing my best anyway to never need an abortion, but if so, if the stars align and say “oops,” that I will not then be humiliated and shamed and forced into carrying out a pregnancy I was spending money and time trying to avoid in the first place.
And because we have shitty sex-ed in this country, even those women who aren’t doing everything they can to prevent an unwanted pregnancy should be trusted enough to have access to an abortion if they so desire. Because. Don’t we have enough misery in the world?