11.30.15 – You are a good woman

It was time to return to work today after the holiday weekend. I feel like such a liar. Telling everyone my Thanksgiving was nice and quiet, I spent it at home. Apple pie was great, very relaxing, and so on – bleeding throughout every conversation. I wish I felt as refreshed as everyone looks. I can’t exercise, can’t drink, can’t have sex, can’t sleep, and I’ve also developed a cold.   I’m obviously very grumpy. I still have ten more days before my check-up exam, which is when I must have another ultrasound to ensure that the abortion was successful. Medical abortions are ninety-five percent effective. The remaining five percent must be completed surgically.

The clinic gave me a pamphlet entitled, “You are a Good Woman.”   The “good woman” narrative was repeated endlessly while at the clinic. It was plastered on posters, on videos and at the bottom of many forms. The handout provides a brief history of abortion as well as a section entitled, “There are people who want to make you feel bad.” Here is an excerpt:

Even though you know you are doing the best you can, there are people who are working hard to make you feel guilty and ashamed…For nearly forty years since abortion became legal, these people have spent millions of dollars and used politics, religion, intimidations, terrorism, threats, arson, violence, and even murder to try to make it so you don’t have a choice.

This may already be a hard time for you. It’s not fair, but making you feel even worse is part of their plan. They believe that if you feel guilty and ashamed it will be hard for you to stand up for yourself.

The pamphlet continues to provide advice for women who are judged by people they care about, and some confidence boosting tips for honoring personal decisions. The back of the handout provides a list of resources, including several religious organizations for reproductive choice.

I am saddened that this information is needed.

According to a study conducted by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, four percent of all priests in the Catholic priesthood between 1950 and 2002 have been accused of abusing a child.

The strings of morality dangle from the fist of power.

12 thoughts on “11.30.15 – You are a good woman

  1. Fuck yes. To this entire documentation of what it’s like. My abortion was a year ago as of 12/20. YOU are a good woman. Fuck yes. And thanks.

  2. I am so sorry that you have come to the conclusion that abortion was the right solution for you. I am so sorry that you were told that it was better than any alternative, that it was the only alternative. It tears my heart to see you have to experience the kind of isolation that abortion does to a woman and the rest of the world.

    It was not the only way for you. And I know that somewhere deep inside you lives the spirit of a child, who will live on for eternity. I pray for you, and I think of your internal struggle often after reading this blog. I pray that you will find healing and that one day you accept the dignity and humanity of your unborn child. Even if it takes years, I pray that one day it will happen.

    1. Why feel sorry for her decision? While she may but have decided to end the pregnancy, she was being responsible. She decided she’s not mother material. No shame in it.

      I went through an adoption with my firstborn. Then realized that I just couldn’t give birth to another child knowing I wasn’t in a place emotionally and financially to care for them. So the next time I ended up with an unplanned pregnancy, I went through an abortion. It hurt, physically and emotionally, but it was the best thing I could do at that time.

    2. Are you fucking serious with this tripe? An 8 week old collection of cells is a lump of tissue. She exfoliated. Nobody prays when somebody gets a facial.

  3. I can’t tell you how helpful these entries have been for me and I’m sure for many other people out there.

    I terminated a pregancy recently and it’s been hard dealing with it all since then. Reading everything that you have written has brought things back in a positive way and reminded me why I chose to abort in the first place. It was good to read all of your entries because abortion can be difficult to talk about and it can make you feel so alone.

    I have been exactly where you have been and it was just so good to read it all back. The fact that you have documented and archived every step leading up to the abortion and the process afterwards was almost relieving for me. It’s hard to explain.

    Your honesty and boldness is hugely appreciated.

    Please continue to be the person you are and do the things you are doing, regardless of what people say.

    Thank you so much,

    S

  4. People who condescend to say they’re praying for you when you know your own mind should redirect their prayer toward themselves to become less judgmental. Everyone who makes you feel like you made a decision that s/he wouldn’t have made, needs to run out *right now* and adopt a kid or two in foster care. Seriously. Focus their energy on the hundreds of thousands of unwanted children. And STFU.

  5. Over three years ago, I had a surgical abortion at 6 weeks. It was the summer before my second year of college and I already had my apartment ready (2 hours away from home) and my new fast-paced college kid lifestyle that I loved. I had my worst lapse in judgement when I hooked up with my ex-fiance, who was already expecting an unplanned baby. A month later I had this intuition, passed that test with instant flying colors, and my world turned upside down. I do not regret my decision for way too many reasons to count. It’s a fucking disgrace that women everywhere are judged for a choice that we never imagined we would have to make! About 2 months after my procedure, while back in school, I had abdominal pain and severe light headedness that came out of nowhere. My 1st thought was, INFECTION. I’M GOING TO DIE. I called the women’s health center on campus, told the lady who answered the phone what I was thinking, and she said she would meet me at the local ER. This total stranger met me there to offer her support and comfort without judgement, dispite the fact she grew up in a Catholic home and had a baby girl from her unplanned pregnancy to her boyfriend. The compassion she showed me blew me away, and I hope (and pray-no offense!) that many more women find this comfort while in this difficult situation. The doctor who saw me in that moment however, gave me the most judgemental, soul-ripping stare I’ve ever witnessed when I explained my recent situation and concern for infection. He didn’t care about my situation or about my current health. He was hung up on 1 word I said. The urgency to send me home and the annoyance in his voice when he came back to tell me it was “just a UTI” went through me like a knife. There will always be 2 kinds of people in this world, and I wish that each and every woman finds the compassionate ones in their darkest situations. Thank you for sharing your experience and allowing us all to open up about our own. We all need expression to stay sane! XO

  6. I recently had a medical abortion. My experience was world’s apart and yet so similar to yours. Your blog is something I wanted to write but didn’t know how to express so well. This experience has shown me that the stigmas attached to things are there. Real and hidden in the open so to speak. The inability to explain things to people and yet the want. The fact that if I had had a miscarriage for a pregnancy I didn’t want I would have been cut slack but by deciding to not bring another child into my life I was going to have to bear things in quiet. Thankfully I have good friends. Friends who I could tell when I couldn’t tell my family members and who are there for me and checking on me. I am thankful for them and for the clinic where I went and was treated with so much care and concern.

    Hopefully with more stories such as yours and those posted here there will be ways for women to express their feelings in ways which will allow them to seek and find what they need to achieve closure. I know I don’t have it yet, but I also know I made the right choice for me and my family. I want to make sure future women have the same ability.

  7. Just in case you’re publishing pro-life comments – like the one above – simply because it’s better to have shitty comments than no comments at all, I’ll post another comment here.

    I thank you for having the courage to speak out and share your experience with the world. There’s so much judgement and shaming around abortion that, even 20+ years after I had one, I’m still not willing to post under my real name. I can’t take the chance of a possible future employer finding my abortion story on the web. There are too many nasty, judgmental Christians in this country, and particularly in Tennessee, where I live.

    What really pisses me off about these people is that, not only do they want to deny us access to abortion, but they also want to take away welfare and food stamps for single mothers. They absolutely do not give a damn about children, so why would I ever bring a child into this world?

    I’m in my 40’s now and still happily childfree. I intend to stay that way. I’m happy for you that you’re childfree also. 🙂 I hope you’re feeling better now. This is a terrific blog that was much needed. For anyone who wants to read additional abortion accounts, the NARAL website has a lot of them. I’ll include the link to them in the “website” box there with my name, in case anyone wants it.

  8. Kind of the same story here, except we were from different countries (me being portuguese and him italian), I was leaving italy becaus my project there had come to an end and he was leaving to the reunio island to do research on a vulcano for curriculum propouses only (no money income). If we had decided to go through tje pregnancy, probably we wouldn’t be together today, we wouldn’t even be living in the same country and we (or I) would depend on everyone’s help and goodwill to raise this child. Instead, the choice to abort made us organize ouselves and once we’ve decided that we wanted family we put our hands to work. We now have an amazing 6 month old little girl that, I can assure you, is the most wanted. We have the means ti assure her what she basicly needs.
    You are a good woman and a responsible one too. Congratulations on your courage

  9. I would be so lost without reading these entries.

    I had an abortion right before returning to school after winter break. Barley making it in the door without having an anxiety attack caused by the simple words “How was your break?”.

    For me what nobody seems to understand is that the number one person that wants to make me feel guilty and ashamed are the thoughts in my head.

  10. Jex, I think you’re incredible. I chose to comment on this entry because of a few reasons.
    1. This was just three days after a religious right wingnut killed people just for being in a Planned Parenthood.
    2. That final sentence hit me so hard.
    3. It was also my turn to return to work on this day- after a long, arduous process of interviews where I clarified my values, waiting for my offer letter, and then having the slightest amount of fear struck into me by the events in Colorado, I joined the staff of my local Planned Parenthood, where we provide the type of abortion you opted for. I started on November 30th.

    Thank you for sharing your story, and thank you for all you do with TST to improve the lives of not just women, but all of us.

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