This is part of an ongoing collection of women’s stories in Whole Woman’s Health clinics that we will be posting all week. These women have all had to struggle and jump through different hoops as a result of the passage of House Bill 2 in July of 2013, and they deserve to have their stories told.
“Maybe it’s not about how you got here, but how you view and handle the situation.”
That was the epiphany that a patient at Whole Woman’s Health of San Antonio had while waiting to be seen by our physician for her abortion procedure. Her story, like many others’, starts out feeling uncertain, scared, and self-deprecating for choosing to not be pregnant at that point in her life. All of these feelings faded away as she deconstructed her own preconceived notions about abortion and realized that she is there because she was able to make a decision, one that she felt was best for her and the family that she’s already caring for.
An important part about being able to choose whether or not to have an abortion is an important factor of freedom of choice in general.
“I don’t think women experience abortion with just their uterus — they experience it with their emotions, their self-identities, their belief systems, and I think the religious right has latched onto that to attach stigma to it and utilize it as a method of control. Whatever your choice, you didn’t get pregnant to have an abortion or to be faced with that kind of decision. That’s the thing that we need to talk about. We have to live in a society where people are able to make choices for their own lives, and we have to have some empathy for that experience and not just the outcome.”
Amy Hagstrom Miller |President and CEO of Whole Woman’s Health|
This is what the patient said about her choice:
I wasn’t raised to believe in abortions. It’s considered a sin and I put myself in this position and I know I’ll probably regret this for the rest of my life. There are many people that don’t know and a few others that I’ve hurt in the process. I’ve lost the trust of my best friend and right now I don’t know how to amend this situation yet, but I feel that this is the best thing for me right now. I have two other children that I can barely provide for, that need all the attention I have left. Maybe it’s not about how you got here, but how you view and handle the situation. I am my own person and I’m living my life the best that I can right now. Right now, this is the best decision for my life and my future.
[patient’s name withheld]
To read more personal stories and/or to speak up and have your voice heard about the harmful affects of House Bill 2, go to www.fightbacktx.com.