June 14, 2019

{Above, 2017, Rep. Pramila Jayapal on a subcommittee regarding anti-choice legislation.)

Thank you, Pramila Jayapal, for your courage and steadfastness in fighting for the rights of women. In a must-read New York Times op-ed, Jayapal went public with the abortion she had decades ago.

Like most women who have abortions, Jayapal already had a child.

The unplanned pregnancy she terminated was extremely high-risk.

It had to be my choice, because in the end, I would be the one to carry the fetus in my body, I would be the one to potentially face another emergency cesarean section, and I would be the one whose baby could suffer the serious, sometimes fatal consequences of extreme prematurity...

I am grateful to those across the country who are speaking out about the tremendous diversity of experiences and what it truly means to be empowered, even as I respect the choices of those who keep their stories private.

To this day, 22 years later, I think about those moments on the table in the doctor’s office. Circumstances prevented me from giving birth again, though I am blessed with a wonderful stepson. To this day, I have deep emotions about all the events of my life. For me, terminating my pregnancy was not an easy choice, but it was my choice. That is the single thing that has allowed me to live with the consequences of my decisions. And that is what must be preserved, for every pregnant person.

Also recommended and on topic: Media Matters points out that news outlets in Missouri are providing a model on how to cover the issue of abortion. Number One on their list: Talk to women who have had abortions.

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