I usually prefer to avoid giving my opinion on issues like abortion, birth control, and premarital sex. This is because I find that when people discuss these particular topics, they debate everything except for the issue at stake. It suddenly becomes a battle of extremists arguing over religion, feminism, politics, and whether or not your unborn child has fingernails. Additionally, while I believe men should be able to give their input on female reproductive options, they absolutely have no right to tell a woman how she should or should not feel. Hello? You’re a man. You’ve never spent a day in a woman’s body, so how the hell do you know what it’s like?
Having prefaced my post with the above, let me just clarify again that this is neither pro-life nor pro-choice propaganda. Dear women of this world: can we please learn to share our opinions and experiences honestly, without promoting a certain agenda? Just because you self-label as “pro-life” doesn’t mean you can’t admit that perhaps abortion was a good idea for your friend. Just because you’re “pro-choice” doesn’t mean that you can’t admit to having feelings of loss or regret. In fact, this was the article that prompted me to write my own response. While I am in no way judging the author’s actions or thoughts, I find that she tries incredibly hard to come off as nonchalant. “Hey, guess what everyone? I had an abortion and it was no big deal. Suck it, pro-lifers!” (Note: this is my interpretation and not an actual quote)
As such, she never delves into the pros and cons of her decision. Of course, she might have elected not to share such intimate details on the Internet with complete strangers and I completely respect that. However, she herself states, “The harder it is to share, the more it ought to be done, otherwise we will eventually not have choices anymore.” If she is already sharing the process of her abortion down to the exact dialogue between herself and her husband, shouldn’t she also admit that not everything was so easy, breezy, and peachy? With sentences such as “The reality [of abortion] is so much different from the hype, it’s amazing”, she seems to be concealing certain aspects of abortion to promote a decidedly pro-choice agenda.
Ultimately, the part that bothered me the most about her view and many of the views expressed in the comments was how the pro-choice community treated abortion as a back-up contraception, a more expensive variation of Plan B (AKA the Morning After Pill). In my opinion, the difference is huge — Plan B prevents your pregnancy, while abortion ends it. Now, the debate on whether an embryo/fetus constitutes “life” is worth having. If a man strikes a pregnant woman and causes her to lose her unborn baby, does he owe her anything? The United States government says yes. My question is: why does the value of a child in utero differ so much depending on whether or not his particular mother wanted him? In order to have a perfectly unbiased, objective assessment on whether or not an embryo is a person, this conclusion should remain the same across the board.
The argument for the value of a baby in utero based on its size is, in my opinion, absurd and baseless. Essentially, proponents of this measure of “life” feel less guilty getting rid of something that looks less like a human. It is logical — after all, many of you would sooner kill an ant than a dog. But is that right? I’m not so sure. Many people also argue that when an unborn child becomes viable (around 24 weeks), that is when it constitutes “life” because it has the ability to be independent from its mother. This theory is also bull, in my opinion. If anything, a fetus of 24 weeks is more dependent on humans outside the womb than inside. Outside, it would need round-the-clock care whereas inside, it has everything it needs to thrive.
I realize that I’m beginning to sound really pro-life here. You know what? It’s because I am; I support life! You know what else? I’m also pro-choice; I support choice. I believe abortion should be legal and every woman should be able to have an abortion if she so desires. However, I also value life/the possibility of life and I think that abortion is not something to be taken lightly. Even if you think you’ll go absolutely nuts if you have one more kid or you are certain you’ll never be able to love that child, you could be wrong. Many parents have had unexpected children who turned out to be a great joy in their lives; it’s just so hard to predict the future.
Finally, I’ll address the religious fanatics/protesters who attempt to scare women into submission. Just. Shut. Up. Take your horrifyingly graphic photos of dead fetuses and hang them up in your own house if you’d like. Stop making an already difficult decision even more challenging for women in unfortunate situations. One day, if your 13-year-old daughter gets pregnant, or worse, is pregnant as a result of rape, or yet worse, you have to choose between her life and her baby’s life, and you still don’t believe in abortion, then perhaps I’ll value your opinion.