Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Yeah, I probably shouldn't go here, but a recent article caught my eye during today's internet wonderings.

The subject was basically how a new study had come out saying there was NO link between abortion and depression. Which was then contradicted by studies that said they were. Then those that weren't. And so on, ad nauseum, each side citing ridiculously convoluted and biased scientific research for their own view.

Answer: Both sides are wrong.

Yes, abortion can be depressing. For some people (like those girls you see in the pro-life commercials). Others skip happily to the abortion clinic. Still others (who we will not name) would happily run a clinic in her own dining room if she had the equipment and the skills. And Indiana has started letting people purchase abortion "gift certificates" for disadvantaged folk who need one. Which is disturbing on more levels than abortion, but whatever.

But really, trying to use "depression" as a measuring point for whether or not any choice is the right one simply makes no fucking sense. Then having a child could be depressing (a lot of people having abortions think so). Or getting married. Or having worn that particular dress to your high school prom. None of these seem to be under attack.

Stop citing these stupid studies as scientific research, and let's just get back to the abortion debate for what it really is: a classic moral debate overridden with the undertones of just how much probing and control the government should have over our private lives and choices. There's nothing scientific about that.

Besides, just who are these "subjects"? I'm sure people who sign up to be interviewed are ones selected by the studies, or are feeling cathartic, or need attention (or potentially money) or want to push the fact they don't give a damn - either because they really don't or are in denial. There's no way to "objectify" an emotion like depression or trace its causes to one event. I'm not down-playing any trauma or second-guessing that goes into an abortion decision, but I don't think that is the pivotal "low point" for EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THESE WOMEN. Sheesh. Isn't that kind of implying we are only allowed to experience tragedy once we have to choose between being a mother or not? There are other things to weep about, you know. Even women who don't want babies aren't that horribly shallow or heartless.

If someone came up to me with a clipboard post-abortion and asked me how I felt after a procedure that involved me having to weed through harsh layers of judgment in a mind-numbing cost-benefit analysis probably weighed in solitude and said "so, how do you feel about that?" a baby/cells would not be the only person/thing to die/be flushed out that day.*

*The author maintains her purely pro-choice views. Meaning you're welcome to be pro-life. But if you don't want an abortion, just don't have one. It's easy. You're already doing it without even trying. How's that for choice?

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