Some of you may not know this about me, but I interned and then subsequently worked at Crittenton Hastings House, an organization in Boston that provided women's health services, including abortions, and was also a shelter and alternative high school for pregnant and parenting teens. One of the many takeaways from that experience is that there is no one particular "type" of woman or teen that utilizes abortion services. I saw teens who had to get judicial bypass permission for their procedures and teens who came in with their parents or partners. I saw women across the reproductive age spectrum. I did phone intake and saw statistics about income (for insurance purposes), with an outstanding range. I saw women come in alone, with a partner, or with a friend or other family member. I saw women of all races and ethnicities. Sometimes I heard their stories -- failed birth control, rape, financial stress, or other factors/experiences -- that went into their decisions. And the decisions were not easy. Anyone who thinks that people approach an abortion as a cavalier alternative to contraception is seriously misguided (to put it mildly).
These women are you, me, our co-workers, sisters, neighbors, mothers, daughters, and friends. One in four women has had an abortion. It is healthcare, it is a constitutional right, and it is truly needed for too many reasons to articulate here. I decided to go to law school when Planned Parenthood v. Casey came down because I was so distraught about the future of reproductive rights, even back then. I originally was planning to get a double degree in law and public health in order to focus on those issues for my career. Although my path didn't eventually lead in that direction, I still feel incredibly strongly about widespread access to contraception, sex education, and women's health services, including abortion. I am horrified at our country right now.
I used to have a bumper sticker that said "if you don't like abortions, don't have one." I still firmly believe this. #keepyourlawsoffmybody