The other day, I saw a bumper sticker that read, "ABORTION KILLS BABIES." At first, I read it as though no one was on the opposing side of this statement. Abortion kills babies because yes, they're supposed to kill babies. And I while I can say that while laughing at the sticker alone in my car, it's because I know that abortions do not actually kill a kido. But so many people are confused on this issue because of bullshit propaganda like said bumper sticker. So let's start here, because if you're ever going to make an informed choice about your body, you need to do it without the looming guilt of a fake murder.
Yes, abortions do kill a potential (key word) baby; that is sort of their shtick. If you get an abortion, you are terminating a potential baby, and I think, no matter where you stand on the issue personally, it's important to not glorify that aspect. You are terminating a maybe-baby. You were never a parent. You never had a child. You had a potential. But also no, you are absolutely not murdering a child. Again, YOU ARE NOT A BABY KILLER. I really hate gardening metaphors, but this one works well(ish): if you put a seed in some soil and dig it up, you're not killing a carrot. We don't even think about that seed as a carrot yet, because it's not a carrot. And your seed/baby potential is not a baby, and the fight to stop you from removing it is not about baby-killing either, but that's a longer conversation. The point is, this is your decision, and you deserve to make that choice without a moral dilemma regarding murder. It's already a difficult decision, so know that whatever you choose does not make you a bad person, and it certainly doesn't make you a kido killer.
So now, here are some quick facts about abortion to help you along with yours.
ABORTIONS AREN'T JUST FOR WOMEN
This is not news, but I have to say it in order to properly continue with this conversation. Not all women have vaginas; not all vagina-havers are women. We talk about abortion as a women's issue, which it is, but it isn't only a women's issue. Let just remember that when having chats about abortions and vaginas overall.
WHERE TO GET ONE
This will depend based, unfortunately, on the state that you live in. In Kentucky, South Dakota, North Dakota, Mississippi, West Virginia, and Wyoming there is only one abortion clinic left in the entire state, and even that might soon disappear. The easiest way to find out if you have an abortion clinic in your area is to go to plannedparenthood.org and type in your zip code. From there you can learn more about your options.
Once you have found a clinic, you can decide what type of abortion you'd like to receive. There are two different options: In Clinic Abortion or The Abortion Pill.
In Clinic Abortions:
There are two different methods for an ICA depending on how far along your pregnancy is. For a pregnancy under 16 weeks, clinics often use a suction method that essentially vacuums out your uterus to terminate a pregnancy (sorry if that was graphic). For over 16 weeks, clinics generally use a combination of suction and medical tools to terminate the pregnancy. Depending again on the state you live in, laws regarding pregnancy termination periods may vary.
The Abortion Pill:
The Abortion Pill is a way to terminate your pregnancy from your own home. You receive two pills; one which you'll take at the clinic and the other to take several hours later at home. It's essentially a long, very crampy period that flushes out your uterus to terminate a pregnancy. It's advised that you take a day off of work as the cramping could be rough. This is a good option that can be more comfortable/less invasive than an In Clinic Abortion, especially if you have anxiety about the procedure. Note that while the success rate is still very high for the Abortion Pill, there are more cases of an unsuccessful termination than in an ICA. If that's the case for you, you can always take more medicine, or go in for an ICA.
Both options are completely safe.
HOW MUCH DO THEY COST?:
Abortions can be expensive, unfortunately. For an abortion within the first trimester (first 12 weeks starting from your last period), it could cost around $1,200 for the procedure, without insurance. Getting an abortion in a hospital is going to be more expensive, which is why I'm personally recommending Planned Parenthood (among other reasons) as they provide lower-cost abortions and medical procedures, as well as work with you individually for medical expenses. After the first trimester, and again based on where you reside, abortion costs can go up. If you do have insurance, sometimes your abortion can be fully covered, or at least significantly reduced. If you have a government-run insurance plan, you'll need to check with them on what they cover, which should be relatively easy to find on their website.
Abortions are expensive, but I promise you babies are more expensive. Make sure to check with Planned Parenthood to see what your options are.
If you are under 18, you might need to tell your parents what is going on. Again, this varies by state, so check your state laws on this issue here: https://www.plannedparenthood.org/learn/teens/preventing-pregnancy-stds/parental-consent-and-notification-laws
If you do not feel safe to tell a parent about your pregnancy, do not tell them alone in your home. Consider asking a relative, friend, trusted neighbor, school counselor, etc to either tell them for you or be with you when you tell them. Your safety is important.
In the state of Washington, you do not need to get a parent's permission to get an abortion, but make sure you do tell someone you trust. This is still an important and emotional decision, so find a support system. If you want your abortion to remain private, or you rather seek professional counseling, you can get support here: https://optionline.org/after-abortion-support/ through an online abortion support center (and it's free!). This goes for anyone who received or will receive an abortion. Talking about it is important.
Your impregnator does not need to know about your choice to get an abortion. Your impregnator does not need to know that you are pregnant at all, actually. You have no moral obligation to tell them, but you obviously can if you want. Just know that you have autonomy over your body, and your choice to terminate a pregnancy does not need their seal of approval. I personally recommend only telling your impregnator if they are someone you trust. You don't need unnecessary guilt, harassment, etc from anyone.
Recently, Supreme Court Justice Anthony M. Kennedy resigned from his position. This blows major shit and it's important to know why. Kennedy has been the swing vote in the Court on major issues such as Roe v Wade, gay rights, and the death penalty (but also voted for some not cool things too, let's not glorify him). Now, Trump has the opportunity to nominate another conservative to the Court which will change the course of our judicial system for potentially decades to come. Again, this is a storm blowing major shit. Especially because Trump's nominee is this twat, Brett Kavanaugh. Trump has come out and said, over and over again, that one of the FIRST (aha) things he would do in office would be to overturn Roe v Wade, and now, it seems like that is a very near reality.
What this means to vagina-havers is that you might not be able to get an abortion if Roe v Wade is overturned. Currently, you're good to go. But if this happens, abortion laws will go to the states, which means if you live in a conservative state, your abortion rights might be at risk. And that is horrible. A group of men who will never have to deal with abortion or pregnancy are making decisions about your body, and that is wrong, and I'm sorry. I can't provide any information or help regarding abortion if Roe is overturned, not yet at least. Make sure to vote in local elections; that might be the best thing you can do right now.
Additionally, the shit storm continues with the Gag Rule, because Trump is a literal monster. The Gag Rule would essentially ban doctors and medical professionals from giving reproductive health care such as birth control and information on abortion to their clients. It's pretty extreme. Planned Parenthoods wouldn't be able to mention anything about abortions as an option for pregnancy, although he can't ban them from giving one, yet. This rule would affect so fucking many people. By censoring vital reproductive information, so many people will be faced with having children they cannot take care of either emotionally or financially. Remember that this is not okay, that this is so utterly wrong to prohibit vital health care resources. Remember to seek information and spread accurate resources in order to help your fellow vagina-havers. And remember to stay angry. This is wrong.
Whatever decision you make, remember that it is yours to make and no one else's. And you're not a baby killer.