Guest Author - Suzanne Gregory
When I think of the topic of pro-choice, I am most fueled by my passion to work to end abortion coercion. I have written some on the subject in other articles. This one will not be the last. It is a huge dream of mine, to become a major advocate against coercion, and to prevent it from happening all together.
It is a huge task, with many roadblocks, in all directions. That is fine; I am up for the task, no matter how big the battle. I know, I can make a difference, and that in itself is half the battle.
There are many forms, many tactics used, and many different people in a woman’s personal circle of relationships that can play a role in influencing her decision.
The problem is that to truly have a choice and fully maintain your human rights, the decision has to be all yours. When undue influence enters the equation, it has crossed the line into coercion.
Input and knowledge from others, from loved ones, from research, can be a great tool, in helping a woman to make the best decision for her, and her circumstances.
It is when other people use tactics, to sway your decision, that it becomes coercion. Studies reflect that 64% of abortions performed, involve coercion. Sadly, I think the number is much higher. Partner pressure, parental pressure, anti-abortion pressure, faith based pressure, all for the purpose of choosing a decision for someone else, based on their needs or wants.
That is not giving a woman a choice. No one has the right to sway you away from the decision you feel is best for you. I am not pro-abortion! I am not anti-abortion! I am pro-choice! I am pro each individual woman’s choice.
For any woman unsure, what the best choice is for you, or what decision you want to make, it is, your decision alone. No one can make you and no one can force you. If you are a teen and your parents are trying to force you to have an abortion, there is help. They cannot force you, it is a form of abuse, and it is not legal.
There are places and people who can help you. If your boyfriend, or husband, is trying to persuade you that it is the right thing, but you are torn by what you are told, and what you feel, they are trying to choose for you.
Abortion coercion is the unchoice. No one can decide but you. The decision cannot be undone, and going along with the decision to appease someone else’s wishes, has serious ramifications for you, emotionally, mentally, physically, and in some cases spirituality.
Abortion is not wrong, but forcing you to have one, if you do not want one, is!
If you think you are being coerced, do not let anyone force your decision. Tell a doctor, a social worker, a Planned Parenthood staff member. They can help to protect your rights and your decision.