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dmr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-07-11 12:49 AM
Original message
Choice: We had a discussion here on DU a few years ago
about how the newer generation of women didn't fully understand how serious and now fragile, Choice is.

It's one of those things, I suppose, you take for granted because since it's available for you, you then expect it to be there if needed. Or you think you understand, but unless you experience not having this right, you just can't understand how frighteningly horrific, how devastating it can/will be for women. I don't want to sound all dramatic here, but what I wrote above is true.

In all my wildest imaginations did I think legislation like we've seen from varying states would ever come into fruition. It scares the hell out of me. What can be next?

When I was in my late teens, I had three friends who became pregnant. In those days you were a 'bad' girl - dirty, if you found yourself pregnant.

This is what happened:

Friend #1 - She married the guy a month after we graduated from high school. He was an ass & a wife beater. He forbid her to have friends. I tried to keep track of her, but she told me each time he knew she talked to me, she got punished, she was afraid he'd hurt me. It broke my heart. I've tried searching for her many times through the years, but I haven't been successful.

Friend #2 - She found a 'doctor' in Detroit. Her boyfriend took her there & had what we call a 'back alley abortion'. A toxic infection set in. She was hospitalized, and survived. I remember holding her in my arms rocking back & forth as she sobbed. The doctors said she could never have kids. She & I are Facebook friends, & one day recently she wrote and asked if I was paying any attention to the proposed changes in our legislation. She said she'd like to wring everyone of those men's necks.

Friend #3 - She died. Bled to death. She called me, said she trusted me & asked if I'd come over & help her. Her parents were on vacation, the house was dark, no one answered, so I broke in. She passed away before I got there. I'm crying as I write this. It hurts so fucking bad. After all these years. At that time I didn't know she was pregnant, nor did I know she had an abortion. I learned later that her boyfriend took her to an abandoned house in Detroit. Her parents were beside themselves, wishing their daughter had confided in them. But back in those days, all of us were afraid of our parents when it came to sex, let alone babies.

All three of these friends I knew from Kindergarten. We were little 5 year old babies who grew up to be sweet & good young women full of dreams.

This is a lot of the heartbreak & why I find today's Republican legislators so horrifying for taking us back to those days of needless & unsafe choices for our bodies.

These days we're fortunate to have a world of information at our fingertips. This was not always so. We more or less relied on anecdotal information to help us understand what was going on with our bodies. The difference between those days & today is stark. Doctors treated women differently in those days, too. They were the all-knowing 'Gods' of medicine.

My older sister told me this story in the 80s about when she was young bride in the 60s. She went to the doctor, who prescribed the new birth control pill. He told her to begin to take it on Friday, right before going to bed. She got pregnant. She miscarried & went back on the pill. Again, he told her to start taking in on Friday. She went through this cycle 3 times. 3 miscarriages.

Why was she getting pregnant on the pill? Why? Little information was available to women, plus the doctor who gave her the pill packets never explained she was to take a pill every day. She took it faithfully every Friday!

She was so embarrassed to share that story. All I could do was hug her tightly, and cry for all her pain & heartbreak.

There are thousands, no millions of stories like these. How sad is that? I don't want my future daughter-in-law or her future children to suffer. I want their decisions to be safe and private.

As soon as my son was old enough, I had a series of mini-talks with him about sex, expectations, ramifications, responsibilities and it's wonderfulness. I made sure he knew I would never be judgmental if he got a girl pregnant. He could always come to me. Even if the girl was afraid of her parents, they both could come to me. I would support their decisions & offer advice if asked. But he's always known that - no matter what, I will not sit in judgment.

Now I'm off for a good :cry:

I've never been one to write long posts, let alone start my own thread, so please forgive my wordiness.

Thanks for listening. :hi:
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nadinbrzezinski Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-07-11 12:54 AM
Response to Original message
1. Thanks for writing, and you are correct
younger girls do not have a clue... what is coming.

As a medic in ANOTHER country, we lost one girl from Septicemia (the infection you describe), another died in the ambulance, we tried... like your friend she bled to death... and a third lived, ONLY TO BE CHARGED for having an abortion and NOT wanting to rat on the back alley doctor. Otherwise they'd give her a misdemeanor.

I've talked to kids that do not realize this is going on in OTHER places, and that it will be back here if Republicans can get away with it. It is about control, pure and simple.
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shraby Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-07-11 12:55 AM
Response to Original message
2. There are some threads that a reply cannot add nor detract
from. This is one of those. Recommended!
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CaliforniaPeggy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-07-11 12:57 AM
Response to Original message
3. You have written an excellent post!
No forgiveness is needed or necessary!

Regrettably we need to re-learn these lessons apparently. And the men who advocate for the so-called pro-life position need to be voted out of office.

Recommended.

:hi:
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Rhiannon12866 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-07-11 01:08 AM
Response to Original message
4. Wow! K&R! What a powerful post...
You need to express thoughts like these more often... ;)

And you're right, those of us who came of age when choice was legal do have a different perspective on these things, have come to take it for granted. I just never imagined, with how far we have come, that anyone would be capable of turning back the clock, but they're working on it and succeeding. ;(

I listened to the president of Planned Parenthood on Martin Bashir's show this afternoon talking about the governor of Indiana signing legislation that would close the Planned Parenthood clinics in that state. I was horrified, just thinking about the position that this could put women in, especially rural women, since she said that these women often have no other resource for basic health care. :(

What is happening in this country that a group of men are so threatened by the option of choice being available to women that they are willing to deny them basic health care?! :grr:

When I was in my 20s, I heard a woman who was then in her 40s describe an abortion that she'd had years ago, when it wasn't legal. She had to travel to Puerto Rico and described how she was blindfolded. Jesus, that shocked me. How could we possibly consider returning to those days now?! And her experience was certainly much better than those of your friends, which are beyond tragic... ;(

I am so sorry that you had to go through that, my friend. That is something that should never happen to anyone, ever, no matter what. I guess it's time to wake up before even more basic rights are taken away while no one's paying attention. Rachel Maddow is doing a good job of publicizing this issue, but it's not enough. The media would rather lead with the latest political scandal... x(

We need to start shouting from the rooftops before it's too late... :hug:
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Angry Dragon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-07-11 01:30 AM
Response to Original message
5. K&R
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intaglio Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-07-11 02:19 AM
Response to Original message
6. Thanks. n/t
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JoeyT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-07-11 04:45 AM
Response to Original message
7. I think many of the newer generation of women understand.
Much of the anger I'm seeing is coming from women in their 20s and 30s.

The problem is that way too many men of every age don't understand how important bodily autonomy is, and many of the ones that do actively oppose it. It's a way to keep women as oppressed as possible.
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Lil Missy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-07-11 02:30 PM
Response to Original message
8. Recommend
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snot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-07-11 03:08 PM
Response to Original message
9. I.m.h.o., forcing a woman to bear an unwanted pregnancy to term is slavery.
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Galraedia Donating Member (322 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-13-11 08:17 PM
Response to Reply #9
10. Actually it's more like rape.
Abolition of a woman's right to abortion, when and if she wants it, amounts to compulsory maternity: a form of rape by the State.

-Edward Abbey
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