On January 24, 1972, reproductive justice took place in the highest court of the land. The controversial case Roe v. Wade resulted in women having the agency over their bodies. The Supreme Court decided in favor of pro-choice, giving women the right to have legal abortions. Forty-nine years later, state politicians continue to challenge women’s reproductive rights by blocking significant healthcare for abortions and criminalizing women who obtain them despite extenuating circumstances. In August 2021, the state of Texas passed laws that established an unreasonable timeline for abortion and gave random citizens the right to sue a person or anyone aiding and abetting in the termination of a pregnancy, beyond the window of time outlined by state law. The state of Mississippi tightened abortion laws for it’s citizens just months later.
In spite of, pro-life legislators’ attempt to turn back the hands of time and disrupt progressive reproductive history, women continue to have abortions by choice or out of necessity. Loved ones who are coping with the emotional, physical and psychological aspects of seeking abortion care and terminating a pregnancy continue to need support more than ever. It is up to be there for a friend after an abortion procedure. Here’s how:
This can be difficult to hear but unless you yourself have had an abortion there isn’t really much that you can say right now that will be very useful – at first. And, even if you have had an abortion, no two experiences are the same. Everything from the circumstances leading up to it to the aftermath to the procedure itself is completely different for every individual. Instead of racking your mind for something useful to say, just say less. Say very little. Your friend is the one who just had this complex experience so she is the one with a heart and head full of emotions and thoughts and information that need to spill out. To be the one talking a lot right now would be a mistake.