Birth control isn’t just about sex.
Abortion isn’t about a quick fix for being seen as being “reckless.”
Birth control and abortion are lifesavers to many and a crucial peace of mind to many more. It’s a sense of power over the autonomy of one’s life. In their simplest forms: it’s the right to choose, and the patriarchal government is waging war on that choice right now.
When I was just beginning my cycle, abortion was framed to me as something only “promiscuous” girls did to not further shame their families for their behavior, and birth control was what grown women (read: married) took to not have babies. That was the only explanation given. Either you were being “fast” or not trying to have children. This is the rationale that the government is using to frame most of their attacks about birth control and women’s health in general. They are using sex to weaponize the argument about using birth control and abortions respectively.
The argument for both were made for me at the age of 15 when I was raped. My first thoughts and concerns were “what if I get pregnant from this?” Not only was I not prepared to be a mother, I did not want any reminder of the loss of power I felt in that moment. Knowing that I had the option of being able to make a decision in that time that didn’t equal the trauma of bringing a child into the mix, it brought a sense of power back.
But the government is trying to take this sense of power away.
September 29th is Safe Abortion Day: a day where the main goal is to bring attention to statistics on how many safe abortions are being administered around the world and heartbreakingly so, how many unsafe ones are being had, as well as the unfortunate fatalities that sometimes follow. The day is also dedicated towards educating the government on why safe access to the procedure is necessary.
Abortion is still one of the topics of women’s health that the public at large just doesn’t want to discuss. The majority of people in this debate would rather spout inaccurate information from preconceived notions and one-sided judgements.
Women’s health breaks down into a religious, socio-economical, racial debate that’s being helmed by old, white men in the government.
And that’s terrifying.
They want to strip us of our right to choose and are passing legislation that workplaces too can also choose to discriminate against covering these aspects of women’s care… whilst their Viagra is still covered.
Whilst they’re being ousted by mistresses and other sources that were forced to get abortions to not sully their reputations or call into the searing light how hypocritical their actions are.
As women, we are not here solely to provide babies and then slink off into the oblivion until we’re called for again. Men have been given the reins to be anything they want, but as soon as women make assertions for themselves, we get the pushback of “what about the children?” Besides the glaring point that many women do not wish to have children; many cannot have children. Many take birth control for multiple other uses, ranging from acne to treating PCOS. Many women undergo abortions because of threats to their own health if they go forward with pregnancies.
Or the plain and simple fact: women enjoy sex too.
We should have the option to choose for ourselves.
Written by Aubri Elle