Thursday, January 7, 2010

No, I'M Not Here for an Abortion

Today was rough all around.

A good friend of mine went for an abortion, and needed someone to drive her to Charlotte [she said it's OK to post, but obviously I won't be using any identifying details]. Her family and several friends refused, and are generally being horrible about the whole situation, and she doesn’t have a car, so she asked me. The original plan was to go on the weekend, so my husband could drive, but I didn’t know if he would go for it [we're both personally opposed to abortion in most circumstances], and we figured there would be less hassle during the week.

We were wrong on the hassle part. Even though we were there early on a cold weekend morning there were still several people standing around, a couple with signs, the others just trying to harass people and shove pamphlets at them. Seriously, if you want to change someone’s mind about something, that’s not really the time, place, or manner, in which to do it. I was just going to park and wait, but I ended up walking in with her so she’d have some support, and to help keep them away [I'm 5'11, 250+, and can be a little intimidating].
It sort of worked – she was barely showing. I, on the other hand, am very visibly pregnant, so most of them got in my face instead. The irony is that I am way past the point where any doctor around her would do an abortion, if I had wanted one, but it was easier to tell them to f’ off than try to explain that to a bunch of self-righteous jerks. It actually got to the point where I was a little worried about our safety, because one woman grabbed my arm, but I managed to get her to back off [pressure points - learn 'em & love 'em, you can get someone back with like 2 fingers and minimal force] and we went inside with no major drama.
She seemed OK at that point, so I just sat in the waiting room and told her I’d be there when she came it [I don't think I could've handled being there for it - I've had 2 miscarriages for myself, and it was already a pretty stressful day, I'm sure much moreso for her than me]. Honestly, it felt awkward as hell sitting there in the waiting room being pregnant myself, and I hope that I didn’t offend or upset anyone else with my presence [one more reason I was originally gonna wait in the car]. When we left, there was a clinic escort there who walked with us to the car because she was pretty weak and upset and they didn’t want us walking back out there alone like that.

I’m not really sure why I’m blogging this, other than catharsis. It just hurt me to see the hatred on some of those people’s face, directed at someone who was already in a bad, vulnerable situation, and then to sit there realizing that many of them claimed to be doing it out of religious belief or “love” [one idiot kept going on about love and hate]. I also think it’s crazy that people are allowed to harass other like that to keep them from having a medical treatment. Imagine if they started blocking off hospitals or plastic surgery clinics – I’m sure there would be laws passed and actually forced to protect those.

The crazy thing about it is that, even though I consider myself anti-abortion, today has made me consider volunteering as a clinic escort and trying to find some way to help support women who do choose abortions, because nobody should have to go through that sort of harassment when they’re already making a tough decision. She said she’ll have to go back in 3 weeks for a check up, and I hope it’s not the same bunch of crap then.


  1. I think that you would be a great clinic escort.

  2. I'm considering it. The nearest clinics are all over an hour away, but there seems to be a lack of escorts, especially on weekdays.

    One thing I'm considering. I'll probably be doing birth/postpartum doula certification after the baby's born, and I've heard of a program in NYC that also has abortion doulas, to be there to support the woman before, during, and after. I'm really considering looking into that as well. It'll probably cost me some of the more conservative/religious types as clients, but I think there's a real need for support around here for women whatever choices they make.


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