Anti-choice, pro-voice? Sharing stories about abortion.

I stumbled upon “The Only Moral Abortion is My Abortion: When the Anti-Choice Choose” last week, a few years after reading it for the first time. The article is a collection of stories shared by abortion providers, volunteers, and support staff about instances where they provided services to vehemently anti-choice women. More often than not, these women continue to be anti-choice long after they’ve had their procedures. No matter how many times I read the anecdotes, or hear others like them, I end up sad and a little confused but mostly I’m amazed about the level of cognitive dissonance that must be required to continue to advocate against choice when you’ve been allowed to choose abortion for yourself. How are your personal beliefs about abortion strong enough to compel you to keep others from getting the same services? What kind of information is influencing these beliefs? And what kind of story (if any) would the women themselves tell about their abortions?

The anti-choice after abortion mindset (and the anti-choice movement) make me question the kinds of messages that activists on all sides of the issue are presenting to the public. We’re probably most familiar with the sensationalized / politicized image of abortion: the street corner activist holding up enormous graphic posters of aborted fetuses; the pictures of angry protesters on the steps of the Capitol. These images are thrust into our faces, keep us from seeing what abortion actually looks like, and keep us from hearing the truth about a medical, possibly life-changing, and occasionally life-saving procedure. We rarely get to hear about abortion apart from the politics just as we rarely get to hear the stories about abortion directly from the providers and the patients themselves in a neutral, safe space.

In addition to the growing list of websites and other resources that provide straight talk, no filter, real world information about the medical facts associated with abortion, there are also a growing list of safe spaces where women who have had abortions (or who are considering or who have considered having abortions) can share their stories. This “pro-voice” movement emphasizes that these women should be able to share their stories freely, without fear of judgment, sensationalism, or political interference. The pro-voice community looks to provide support to women who have had abortions along with information about after abortion care. There some critics of the pro-voice movement: most of these individuals, many of whom have had abortions themselves, state that to present abortion free of the social and political contexts in which it is performed is to present an incomplete picture of the procedure and how it affects people.

It is important to show the public the whole picture when it comes to abortion. Attention grabbing headlines and photos do just that: catch our eyes and make us listen. However, we should take care to listen to clinical facts and to true personal stories alike and use as much information as we can to make up our own minds about abortion. We should try to see it as it is, before we let our personal beliefs and political leanings cloud our thoughts about it.

It would be easy for me, as a woman with pro-choice, liberal leanings, to decry one of the “Moral Abortion” anti-choice advocates. I’ve seen the glossy, gory pictures. I’ve leaned about abortion clinical facts. I’ve even heard the story from the provider’s viewpoint but none of these show me the whole picture about abortion as it relates to these women. In order to find that out, I’ll have to sit my own biases aside and listen to her story in her own words.

Read the Original Article Here…

http://mypage.direct.ca/w/writer/anti-tales.html

Basic Information about Abortion…

http://www.plannedparenthood.org/health-topics/abortion-4260.asp

https://www.prochoice.org/about_abortion/facts/

About the Pro-Voice Movement…

https://exhaleprovoice.org

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