I had originally planned a completely different blog post but I’ve not been able to fully function this week. The sadness, anger, and terror I’ve been feeling as a result of Roe vs. Wade being overturned, has invaded all aspects of my life. I’ve been doom scrolling and sharing memes upon memes…and now it’s time to write about my feelings.
I am unequivocally pro-choice. I can’t remember a time I ever wasn’t, and that was the case even though I was raised in a semi-religious household. I will never be able to wrap my head around laws that strip female-identifying individuals of their right to body autonomy. My views on being pro-choice has only strengthened now that I’ve become a mother to two children who are my entire world. Here’s why:
- There is Little to No Support for Mothers or Families in This Country. I was one of the lucky ones. During each of my pregnancies, my employers paid for 12 weeks of leave for me. And most of us living in this country don’t have access to much more than that. It’s absurd to me that the U.S. is the only “developing” country in the world that has absolutely no parental leave policy. If you live in the U.K. you get 39 weeks, in Sweden, you get an astounding 68 weeks, which is part of the country’s “efforts to achieve gender equality.” Estonia offers 82 weeks, and Japan, 52 weeks. How can you force people to carry and birth children with little to no support or benefits when the baby arrives?
- An Abortion Ban Will Only End Safe Abortions. For everyone who argues that “abortion is murder,” well, so is outlawing abortion! Abortions will never go away. Only safe, medically viable ones. And the people who will be disproportionately most affected by this are those who need access to cheap, efficient care – women of color. For those of you in need of an abortion, start here.
- Forcing People to Have Unwanted Children is Never Good. Abuse, poverty, and generational trauma will only increase. The list goes on and on. I can’t see a single good thing that comes out of forcing people to have children when they don’t want them. Even when you want children it’s hard enough!
- Many States Will Be Banning Abortion Even in Cases of Rape or Incest. This is just absurd to me.
- Access to Contraception in this Country is Limited. It was only after President Obama passed a birth control mandate into law through the Affordable Care Act, that contraception became more accessible to those of us with a uterus via health insurance. But still: the U.S. boasts the highest rate of unintended pregnancy in a developing country at 49%. Also: more than 19 million women in the U.S. live in areas that are considered “contraceptive deserts.”
I feel there is so much more that needs to be said about this issue. I know for myself, I will do everything in my power to continue funding resources that empower women to make their own choices: Planned Parenthood and Yellowhammer Fund are two I currently support. Yellowhammer Fund serves women in the deep South, and is offering free emergency contraception to anyone who lives in Alabama, Mississippi, or the Florida Panhandle.
I feel privileged and blessed that I was able to choose the father of my children, intentionally decide and CHOOSE to get pregnant, and build a life for the children we CHOSE to have. I cannot imagine living a life where any of those components were forced on me. Sadly, that is where we are going with this law.