Big Damn Abortion Heroes in Ireland: Part Two

I’ve talked a lot recently about people getting in the way of access to abortion in Ireland. The women who ratted their housemate out to the police because she wasn’t sorry enough about her abortion. I’ve gotten deeply snarky about people who make mind-bogglingly ignorant arguments against pregnant people’s right to choose.

I have’t talked that much about the other side: the people who speak up. Those who tell their stories. People who risk arrest and villification to choose their own path or to support others’ choices. The big damn abortion heroes of our time.

As there are a lot of people to share, this post is split this into three parts. Part One is here.

Telling it like it is

It’s illegal to import or take abortion pills. Nevertheless, people do it every day. While it’s legal to leave the country for an abortion, until recently it’s been considered such a shameful thing to do that most women went through the whole process in secret.

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 To share that you’ve had an abortion has been taboo- despite the fact that more than 150,000 people are recorded as having gone to the UK for terminations since it was made unconstitutional in 1983. I shouldn’t have to say this, but: that figure of 150,000 is almost certainly far smaller than the true figures. It doesn’t include anyone who bought abortion pills online since they’ve become available, anyone who had an abortion in the UK and didn’t share their Irish address, or anyone who went to a different country. It leaves out every self-induced abortion that nobody heard of.

It takes immense courage to share your abortion story in Ireland. I remember the first time I heard those words- “I had an abortion”- in a public space: Continue reading “Big Damn Abortion Heroes in Ireland: Part Two”

Big Damn Abortion Heroes in Ireland: Part Two
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Big Damn Abortion Heroes in Ireland: Part One

I’ve talked a lot recently about people getting in the way of access to abortion in Ireland. The women who ratted their housemate out to the police because she wasn’t sorry enough about her abortion. I’ve gotten deeply snarky about people who make mind-bogglingly ignorant arguments against pregnant people’s right to choose.

I have’t talked that much about the other side: the people who speak up. Those who tell their stories. People who risk arrest and villification to choose their own path or to support others’ choices. The big damn abortion heroes of our time.

As there are a lot of people to share, this post is split this into three parts.

Do you need an abortion?

It’s illegal in the Republic of Ireland to encourage anyone to have an abortion. It’s possible to provide information, but not to tell someone that you think an abortion might be a good option for them. Conversely, it’s perfectly legal to say whatever you like to encourage someone not to have one.

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If you’re in the North or South of Ireland and are considering abortion, Need Abortion Ireland is there for you. This website has everything you might need, whether you’re travelling to the UK or need a safe way to access abortion pills on the island. They’ve a text support service that you can contact at any time before, during or after your abortion. They’ll even send you a care package full of “pyjamas, snacks, films, anything you need to make your abortion experience as comfortable as possible“. If you need an abortion and you’re feeling isolated? These are the big damn heroes who’ll do everything short of coming to your house, propping your feet up and putting the kettle on for you themselves.

Continue reading “Big Damn Abortion Heroes in Ireland: Part One”

Big Damn Abortion Heroes in Ireland: Part One

Six Top Tips To Avoid Being Despised By Anyone With A Shred Of Humanity: Abortion Edition

[CN: anti-choice, abuse, manipulation, pregnancy, police, miscarriage]

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Remember yesterday’s post about the anti choicers crying for the return of forced labour camps for people who have abortions, after one woman was just convicted of having had an abortion as a teenager? Just when you thought that woman’s situation couldn’t get any worse, it just did. I woke up this morning to an interview in the Belfast Telegraph with her housemates. The people- and I use that term in its loosest sense- who called the police to have her arrested. Those people- one woman in particular- spoke to the paper because they just couldn’t stand people vilifying them on the Internet.

You know what’s a really great way to not get vilified? Not doing morally abhorrent things. Not having a teenage girl arrested cause you don’t like the choices she made about her own body.

This advice is for them. Continue reading “Six Top Tips To Avoid Being Despised By Anyone With A Shred Of Humanity: Abortion Edition”

Six Top Tips To Avoid Being Despised By Anyone With A Shred Of Humanity: Abortion Edition

Bring back forced labour for abortion convictions? Precious Life would.

Yesterday a woman in Northern Ireland was given a three-month prison sentence- suspended for two years- for the crime of taking an abortion pill. She was 19 years old at the time.

Abortion is legal in the rest of the UK, and pregnant people have the right to travel overseas for a termination. However, while someone resident in England, Scotland or Wales can almost always have their abortion funded by the NHS, people living in Northern Ireland can’t, and have to pay for private care. Here’s what happened to this womanContinue reading “Bring back forced labour for abortion convictions? Precious Life would.”

Bring back forced labour for abortion convictions? Precious Life would.