Monday, November 16, 2009

In the Era Post Stupak

People tell me they see my writing about the child abuse in my life, plus the grisly aftermath as "courageous" but I think of it as therapy. Once told, the story is no longer inside, it's out there, and some of the pain gets exorcised in the telling. They can post with a pseudonym or as anonymous. But telling is powerful for the teller and the reader.

I'd like to ask women to delve into their most painful past and share that story with all of us. This is no small job. But from the comments on my posts about abortion so far, that's where the real story is, it's there in the reaction to another woman's story. No one ever makes the decision to abort easily or without compelling reasons. Out of maybe forty comments I've had only one person call me a woman who would choose to murder another person for my convenience. Only one person talked to me about my committing the "ultimate sin." Only one person equated the fetus with the adult woman and said the fetus had the same right to life as I, but thought that the doctors who authorized and performed the procedure should have been jailed. That was one comment out of forty or more. So, how courageous is it to talk about the intensely personal? Is talking honestly with a therapist courageous? No one sits across my desk as I talk here and asks me questions.

If someone comes to my blog to insult and harass me, my first impulse is to try to reason with them or suggest I might not be their cup of tea. And in the end, I can shitcan their comments, or on twitter I can block their access to me. This is my free speech zone and I choose to express myself in this way. If I'm enraged by the Stupak Amendment, this is why. I can't say what it means to you, but I can warn you as one who lived my reproductive years in the era of the Comstock Laws, in the time before Roe v. Wade, what it will be like in the era post Stupak.

Statistics bore most of us, but if you want to know what it was like for women who lived in the era pre Roe v. Wade, you'll get an inkling when you read the comments from my three pieces on the subject.

Happy 45th Birthday Diana!

Diana, you fly me to the moon every time I listen to you. I type to the beat and rhythm of your exquisite phrasing. Happy Birthday! Keep doing the soulful swinging. Love You!