The Logistics of Arranging Abortions
Irish women have abortions. Every single day. Because of our laws, we aren’t able to do so in Ireland, so we travel. You hear a lot about the fact that women travel, as if it were an easy thing. We’ve all popped over to the UK for a long weekend or holiday, haven’t we? Travelling for an abortion shouldn’t be more complicated, should it?
Pro-choice activist Stephanie Lord tells us a little about what is really, really involved:
Do you have the internet? If you have, do you know how to delete your browser history so that your violent partner doesn’t know what you’re up to? Can you go to an internet café where nobody knows you? Bring tissues just in case. Do you know the number of the local women’s refuge?
Have you been to the doctor? How far along are you? Do you know the further along you are, the more expensive an abortion is? Can you get a loan from a Credit Union? Or will you go to a money lender? Do you have anything you can sell to raise the money? Can you lie to your parents or friends to borrow money? Can you max your credit card? Do you even have a credit card? Are there any bills that you can get away with not paying this month? Have you gone through all your old coats and looked down the back of the sofa? How long will it take for you to get €1,000 together? Can you get an extra €20 off the Community Welfare Officer? Can you not buy coal for the next few weeks? Are you on the dole? Can you use your savings? Can you defer your year at college and save the money for your Master’s Degree again? Is it Christmastime? Can you return any gifts for a refund or sell them for cash?
Women with money have options, women with nothing have babies.
Read the rest. There is far, far more.
Threesomes and blowjobs and Liveline, oh my!
Hold on to your seats and put down anything breakable, because you’re about to be shocked like you’ve never been shocked before. The latest scandal this week in Ireland has been over the fact that teenagers and young adults sometimes have sex. With each other. And that they sometimes experiment with sexy things.
I know. It was a surprise to me too. Who would have thought that hormone-flooded 16-25 year olds might possibly think of engaging in all sorts of deliciously sexy fun? They definitely wouldn’t come up with the idea on their own. Everyone knows that the only way to get a 16-25 year-old even thinking about sex is for an older person to write a matter-of-fact, clinical article describing how to be safe while you’re doing it.
At least, that’s what Mayo TD Michelle Mulherin thinks. If her name’s familiar to you, by the way, it’s because of her stunning revelation last year that “fornication, I would say, is probably the single most likely cause of unwanted pregnancies in this country” (I eagerly await her insights into the second and third causes of unwanted pregnancies, by the way). She’s now on the warpath again, because Irish youth website spunout.ie published an article a month ago about how to be safe if you’re having a threesome. Hop on your chaise longues and get out your smelling salts, because the kids of today are being exposed to such inappropriate scintillation as this:
- Keep it safe. Yeah, yeah, you’ve heard it all before, but seriously keep yourself protected. Like every sexual encounter it is important that you practice safe sex, and that means using contraception, even during oral sex. Remember that condoms are the only form of contraception that protects you against both pregnancy and STI’s.
- Do be aware that you’ll need to change condoms if you are switching partners during the threesome. Otherwise you could end up with some pretty nasty infections.
- Only do it if you want to do it. Not ‘cause you want to keep your girl or guy happy or because other people say it would be great craic. You do not love your partner any less because you do not want a threesome.
- Respect your partner. If your partner tells you that they want things a certain way, don’t ignore it during the threesome. That’s pretty uncool and will likely affect your relationship too.
I know, right? I could barely keep my pants on myself.
Turning off the snark for a moment, though, Sharrow from Activism and Agitation got on the phone to Liveline to give the country some much-needed uncommon sense about teenagers, threesomes and safety.
Yes I did say, anal sex, oral sex, 3some and the phrase ‘promoting blowjobs’ live on national radio to Joe Duffy, who doesn’t intimidate me at all, sure he grew up in the same part of Dublin as my Dad and is about the same age and all. I did ring and tell my parents afterwards, as a polite heads up and they laughed and said they were proud of me.
You see back in the mid 80s they ran parenting courses in primary schools for other parents, including the sex educational model and they have always been advocates of sex education, so I didn’t lick it off a stone.
Read the rest of what she has to say! And yes, she has a link to a podcast of the whole thing. You know you want to hear it.
‘Women Working? We Can’t Have That!’
When it isn’t women having abortions and young adults having sex, it’s those pesky, uppity womenfolk thinking they can just march on in and steal all the jobs rightfully belonging to the menz.
Yes, you read that right. Right here in 2013 Ireland, there’s a possibility that parents (and we all know which ones) whose childcare costs are greater than their income may be forced to.. quit their jobs. By their banks. I kid you not.
These guidelines will apply to those who are no longer able to make their mortgage payments and seek to enter into negotiations with the bank. Under the guidelines, lenders will be able to impose restrictions on what customers spend their money on, and how much they spend. These agreements will be facilitated by state-appointed mediators.
The first step of the process will be an estimation of what a person/couple/family needs to spend on “reasonable living expenses”. They will be allowed this figure but must then forego any luxuries. These “luxuries” include a car (in some cases),health insurance and for some, childcare.
every (male) journalist and politician was discussing how “women” and “mothers” might be forced to give up their jobs (it’s only a silly hobby for them anyway!). They made the immediate presumption that it would be the woman of the house who a) earned less and b) would obviously be the one to stay back and mind the kids. Mind you, considering that the pay gap continues to widen with each year of austerity, and on average women are responsible for 86%of child supervision in this country, I suppose it’s probably an accurate assumption
And one more thing..
Just in case you thought we were the only ones to have a country full of illiterates from in a decades-old bubble. It’s not just us. Check out Irish atheist activist Leonie Hilliard schooling a USian evangelical about the meaning of, er, bibliophile. Oops.
That’s (almost) it!
In the meantime, though, please do take a moment to watch this important, if NSFW, PSA from our friends in Sperm Defence:
- Spunout, threesomes and Michelle Mulherin: In which I rant (thedailyshift.com)
- Whose body is it anyway? Ireland and forced birth (considertheteacosy.wordpress.com)
- Threesome advice for Irish teens on state-funded website sparks anger (metro.co.uk)
- The value of SpunOut (eamonnsblog.wordpress.com)