Why am I pro-choice?

The promised Blog for Choice Day post, belated.

I’ve been pregnant twice, both times intended, and both my pregnancies resulted in healthy full-term babies. Both were (and continue to be) happy experiences.

In the ten years of my life before those pregnancies during which I was sexually active, having access to reliable contraception and experience of comprehensive sex education meant that I did not fall pregnant. If I had fallen pregnant before I was emotionally and financially ready for parenthood it would not have been a happy experience.

I would definitely have opted for aborting the pregnancy, having given up on the hypothetical of relinquishing for adoption at about age 17, when I realised I would never have the emotional strength for that. I feel very fortunate that I never had to make an actual rather than merely a hypothetical decision about an unplanned pregnancy.

Other women I went to school with would not have made the same choices in an unplanned pregnancy situation as I would have done, and that’s OK. Because women aren’t cookiecutter clones of a singular XX template.

I trust women to make the reproductive decisions that are best for themselves. No-one else should have the right to make a woman’s reproductive decisions for her, or to deny her access to the medical prescriptions/procedures/professionals she feels will best implement those decisions. Forced abortions and forced pregnancies make me equally queasy. Forced childbirth options that protect and serve obstetricians and anaesthetists over and above protecting and serving mothers and babies are no better.

It’s more than just choice, it’s basic rights over our own bodies and futures: the freedom to plan our families rather than have them thrust upon us.

That’s why I am pro-reproductive rights and freedoms.

Jessica does a better job on why women should be trusted to make their own reproductive decisions. The comments thread is full of people making it clear that in their opinion women can’t be trusted at all.

Categories: Miscellaneous

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1 reply

  1. Oh – I just got home from a committee meeting wherein we decided to donate a substantial amount of money to Children By Choice with an accompanying letter that it is to assist women from rural areas who have difficulty financially with such choices. You gave me a warm fuzzy moment. (Ok – so the committee meeting was held at JUST the quantam and had the others been around it probably would of been argued all night and I was just pleased the women attending all felt like I did and we got out of there without major arguements.)
    I didn’t have the good fortune to PLAN all my pregnancies. Tubal ligation has been the only fail safe contraceptive for me. And I had a terrible time getting that for myself at the age of 28 – with two doctors telling me I was young and single and could still want more children, refusing to give me the referral I needed. And – I have four children I adore and have worked bloody hard for 21 years to raise. I have willingly and loving given the BEST I could to being a mother. But had there been no alternatives – I honestly would of been 28-9 years old with EIGHT children. My own grandmother had 9 children and there was this wonderful “gap” of four years – whilst my grandfather was off at war. If I was a brood mare I would be worth a fortune.
    And back then (last time 10 years ago) I found the cost… difficult. The emotional side … shattering. The logistics (finding people to mind my toddlers with lies about where I was) transport and accommodation… just horrifying. I had the clinic I attended held hostage to pro lifers waving pictures and trying to tell me about God as they basically assaulted me by pushing me back down the steps.
    And then I DID the whole sheep treatment with the other women from all walks of life as we presented to each room for examinations and counselling and finally the surgery and the twilight drugs and the recovery room and vegimite on toast and finally writing the cheque and hoping it wouldnt bounce.
    Wowie – heaps of emotions. But heaps of absolute resolution that I would always support any womans CHOICE.

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