Week 1: May 5, 2022
I was already reading submissions for our special reproductive rights issues when I found out about the leaked majority opinion that may strike down Roe V Wade this summer. It was no surprise and yet the reality sent me reeling. I grew up in a bubble of time where there was a promise of true equality. Contraception and Abortion were affordable and available. The wage gap appeared to be closing as women entered professions previously dominated by men. The Equal Rights Amendment was within a stone’s throw. I had mistakenly believed that things would be better for the generations to follow.
The stories I am reading are vulnerable and honest. Some people, including myself, have never shared the full story of their abortion and the circumstances that led to the decision. These essays break the false narrative that women need waiting times, invasive ultrasounds or authority figures deciding if their reasons are valid.
Each story is special. I thought about how some of these stories would get lost in an issue that included twenty or thirty essays. I also thought about what the next few months may bring us. In a selfish way, I want to keep connecting with allies during this turbulent time. So I decided that we will publish the essays in small batches each week.
Read the Essays Here:
- Melanie Alberts, shares a first-person essay that is beautifully crafted and poetic. Her piece is haunting and reveals that, while accepting of her choice, there is an emotional side to the experience.
- K E Garland masterfully weaves social and political information into her first-person essay in a way that humanizes the discussion and cautions us to avoid falling into the trap of acceptable and not acceptable reasons for abortions.
- Kayla Branstetter’s essay captures the personal, social, and generational context that underpins one young women’s decision to have an abortion. Only the person making the decision has insight into the complexities of their choice.