Right now, I have a friend who is making one of the most challenging decisions of her life. The decision to choose what is best for her, when faced with the unexpected news that she is pregnant. And I guarantee that you probably do too and just don’t know it. This is not an easy subject to write about, nor is it a comfortable one for you to read about. However it is an issue that affects each and every one of us in one way or another. If you have ever been in this position, you know the roller coaster of emotions. You know the feeling of wanting it one second, and hating it the next. The gut wrenching pain of feeling like your a monster for even considering termination and then the overwhelming selfish feeling when you decide to put yourself first, even for a moment.
Every single reader of mine knows someone who has been through this decision process. Every single pregnancy comes with it, the dreaded doubt, even if for a second. These decisions do not come lightly and they are further influenced by a range of hormones that catch every single female off guard. This is again something that affects each and every one of us, male or female, with or without a designated gender. As a species we have survived because we can procreate. And as a female, we have been equally shamed and praised for this gift depending on race, culture and/or religion.
The female of our species has the often magical and incredible ability to create new life, right inside our own bodies. And because of this females are often raised with the notion that this is our most important life goal, to create new life. It is our gift to humanity, and in many places around the world and throughout our evolution, our singular purpose. With the immense weight on our consciousness, do not think for even a second that the decision to terminate can ever be the easy way out. It is not and it never will be. But very often, it can be the only decision and in some small instances the ethically correct one. I go into the reasons in more depth here, so I won’t repeat myself.
Now I know I wrote a few months ago about how stifling it was that social taboo dictated I could not publicly talk about my sex life, slightly in jest. But here I have found a much bigger issue. When woman are at their most vulnerable and need support the most, we do not have a way to reach out. We cannot make a public calling asking for love and support when we find ourselves in an unexpected situation like this. The network of support is firmly closed for us. As women we become isolated, and almost castrated from our social and family circles. Even the woman who find anonymous forums for support, risk the wrath of trolls. Those cruel and uneducated souls, who believe it is their mission to stir up the status quo, or worse, preach their own religious crusades and verbally harass woman. In many places around the world keeping or adopting is the only solution that is acceptable, or even legal, and that needs to change. We have an ethical responsibility to ensure that each individual has equal access to health care that is sanitary, regulated and wherever possible free.
So what can and what should you do as loving, caring and ethical member of the society that we live in? Remember first and foremost, that all humans should have a right to do with their own bodies what they choose and live the way they see fit. If your belief system is one that forces you to publicly shame other human beings, for making their own decisions about their life, then you need to reevaluate your religion and personal values. It is not up to every member of our society to have to rationalize their behaviors or actions to strangers so long as they impact only themselves. And finally, if you know anyone in this situation, listen to them. Give them a hug, and let them feel free to express the vast range of emotions they are going through. Each member of our society has value, and no one should be ostracized for doing what they feel is right or best for them at the time. You do not have to agree with the difficult decision to abort, but you do have to accept that if the decision is made, the woman is still human and deserves autonomy, safety and care, free of public judgement and shame. As each woman knows, we judge ourselves enough and do not need any help from anyone else.