I think it is important that we start talking more openly about abortion because the media has struck such a fear into our hearts that we start to believe the scare tactics and the lies. In movies and TV, should a woman choose to have an abortion, she has a very good chance of dying or, if she doesn’t die, she becomes severely depressed for the rest of her life on the screen. In reality, a woman has a greater chance of dying in childbirth than she does during an abortion and as far as depression following an abortion, well, that varies. It depends on a woman’s socioeconomic level, her current mental state, where she lives, her support system, etc. So yes, some women suffer from depression but some women are quite relieved, as can be seen in the recent video a woman released where she filmed her own abortion to show that there was nothing to be afraid of (The video is not graphic and only shows her shoulders and above). People were outraged that someone could feel relief after such an experience but if you aren’t in a position to have children or you just feel you aren’t ready, wouldn’t you feel relief, too? Isn’t she entitled to feel whatever emotions she feels as they are real and valid and hers alone? An abortion is a very personal decision and should be hers alone. Religion has no place in the womb especially on the basis that no one has the same beliefs. If you and I differ on when life begins, why should your belief that life begins at conception trump my personal views and beliefs?
I think there is this idea that women use abortions as a form of birth control and have them like crazy but this is simply not true. Access to abortion is limited, first of all. In fact, there are only 3 clinics in my home state of Oklahoma. It is also worth noting that only 26% of women who have an abortion will return for another one. I think some people like to paint this idea of a woman who has an abortion as someone who is immoral and provocative but this is extremely harmful. Women shouldn’t be punished and their child(ren) definitely shouldn’t be punished for the rest of their life because of a mistake (not to mention rape/incest). Enough with trying to make women feel guilty for every single move they make.
The pro-life movement tends to be hypocritical in its endeavors. The focus is very much on protecting life and touts all life is precious but after the life is born, where is the protection? Where is the idea that all life is precious? It doesn’t shine through on death row, that’s for sure. And who is looking out for our children? Those “miracle babies” are treated as if they are burdens and drains on society when their mothers seek out assistance. Even more disturbing is the consistency of violence in the name of life at abortion clinics. Violence, stalking, even murder at clinics peaked in the 90s but continues at a steady rate to this day. This is a form of domestic terrorism that is often overlooked and consequently, swept under the rug.
We need to keep the conversation going. When the media fails to show realistic abortion depictions and when religion winds up in the womb, things need to change. Your story needs to be told. Our rights need to be upheld. There isn’t anything to be ashamed about and the more and more we talk about it, the more balanced things can become.