Women's bodies belong only to us. Men, families, society, have no right to decide for us. The right to abortion is only a tiny part. It is a fundamental human right to understand our bodies, our sexuality, our feelings, periods, pregnancy, and menopause. It is our fundamental human right to enjoy good health, to contraception, to say "no", to choose when and with whom we wish to share our physical pleasure and love, to choose when and with whom to have a baby, or to choose not to have children. It is our right to have healthy babies, to be able to keep our babies, to have help and advice about childcare, to be free from fear, from bullying. It is our right to be beautiful or ugly, to stay at home or go out in the world. What a beautiful place the world will be for men, women and children when these rights are recognised for every women.
1980 United Kingdom
What were your feelings about doing the abortion/s?
I was concerned about denying the child the right to live. I wasn't then and am still not sure what I felt about it spiritually, but I prayed for the unborn child and wished for its soul, if it had one, to be born to parents who would be able to give it the love every human deserves. I felt it was a selfish decision but felt it was my right to make it, as my life was ahead of me and an unhappy / unwilling mother is not a good mother.
How did you do the abortion?
Despite all the support I felt pretty much alone, and for very many years did not feel I could talk about it. In the end I felt it was my duty to talk about it for the sake of other women, so they would not feel so alone. Clinically and medically it went very well, I was well taken care of. I did not suffer from depression afterwards, although it was not especially easy psychologically. It would have been preferable to have remembered to use the free contraception that was available to me in my country, but as one woman pointed out, we are only human, and we inevitably make mistakes.
What was your situation at this time?
I did not feel ready to have a child, and not with this boyfriend who I did not think would be my future husband. In fact I couldn't imagine myself as a mother and I didn't think I would give the baby the life it deserved. Since then, I have in fact never become a mother, and I am very happy with my choice.
Benze ntoni abanye abantu xa ukhupha isisu?
I did not want to talk to many people about it. My boyfriend was extremely respectful of my right to choose, he took a back seat. He suggested I talk to another woman. I eventually spoke to one or two other people. All were supportive, no-one tried to influence my choice except one couple of friends who sincerely believed it would be bad for the unborn baby and for my karma. The clinic I went to offered me a truly honest counceling : I was asked to think about the reasons for AND against such a choice, to try to ensure I would not regret it later.
What is your religion?
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