Monday, June 7, 2010

Whatever You Need

Don't Ask Because I Won't Tell

When I'm Ready,
I'll tell.
But for now,
please don't ask.

By Chris Cotrina, from a multicultural queer youth anthology Revolutionary Voices

A friend of mine had an abortion in almost complete secrecy. She didn't tell me or pretty much anyone. There was a moment when I wished she had felt comfortable confiding in me given my line of work. However, I know that her experience of making the choice to have an abortion was not about me. If she needed almost total privacy, I wanted her to have what she needed.

I have had 2 good friends and an older aunt express a sense of regret after their abortions. Those same women have expressed complete releif and gratitude that their life took paths that would have been impossible had they carried that pregnancy to term. I beleive each woman is entitled to feel whatever she needs to feel before, during, and after her abortion. Its hard because the anti-abortion sect often uses media outlets to make women think they *should* feel guilty. Each time my sisters have expressed regret I try to stand with them and tell them thats ok. I also try to help them move to a place of peace. I'm really thankful there are organizations like Exhale who offer post-abortion counseling that is not weighted by the demonization of women who choose to have abortions.

There is no "right" way to feel during or after an abortion. I wish we lived in a world where women could receive whatever kind of emotional support and care they needed before, during, and after choosing to have an abortion.

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This is not a debate forum -- there are hundreds of other sites for that. This is a safe space for abortion care providers and one that respects the full spectrum of reproductive choices; comments that are not in that spirit will either wind up in the spam filter or languish in the moderation queue.