This post is about abortion support. I am collecting data pertaining to experiences related to abortion from our community members. By gathering your stories, perspectives, and advice, I hope to develop a comprehensive resource that can help those facing similar situations. 

If you have:

  1. Undergone an abortion, elective or otherwise.
  2. Supported a partner through an abortion.
  3. Helped someone close (friend/relative) through an abortion.
  4. Managed a colleague undergoing an abortion.

Please consider filling out this form. The form includes open-ended prompts designed to capture your unique experiences and may require some time to complete. The level of engagement is entirely up to you. Please be assured that the form is anonymous, and all responses will be treated confidentially. Every shared experience is valuable and will be respected with utmost care. Also, I welcome volunteers who can help sift through the responses or contribute to a follow-up post (pro bono, alas).
 

Why discuss this on the EA forum? 

  1. Participants in the EA forum are more likely to be intensely focused on their careers, driven by a desire for impact, which may lead some to choose not to have children. The experience of dealing with an unwanted pregnancy and abortion could be uniquely challenging and isolating.
  2. By discussing personal challenges like abortion openly, we make actionable strides toward fostering a more supportive, compassionate community.


What is a positive outcome? 
A follow-up post, if written right, gathering data and insights on this topic should serve two objectives:
- a well-researched, supportive resource about abortion experiences providing guidance that someone who finds themselves in a similar position might turn to
- we, as a community, feel adequately equipped to engage in informed discussions.
 

Why am I investing my time in doing this?
In addition to helping others, I seek satisfaction in channeling my ordeal (I went through this last year) into something constructive - I might even call it closure. 

My experience. 
(sharing in case it helps people open up about sharing theirs)
When I went through the process myself, I realized that I lacked guidance on what to expect, the help I could ask for, and the changes in my life that would follow. Fortunately, I had abundant financial and social support, and access to abortion-related healthcare was straightforward where I lived. I consider myself incredibly fortunate for knowing my priorities clearly enough to decide on an abortion when faced with an unwanted pregnancy; I did not want kids then, so I was getting an abortion. Clear. However, the experience led me down a path of unexpected grief. The disparity between my expectations (it was a well-informed, rational decision) and the reality (my body going through proper, hormone-driven trauma and grieving) triggered the most challenging mental health period I have ever endured.

A recent post on pregnancy loss provides some insights but doesn't entirely cover my experience. After all, I wasn't grieving a loss but grappling with 'Why me?' and 'When can I get back to normal?’ People in my support network – partner, friends, and coworkers – were keen to help. But, my inability to articulate what I needed led to a frustrating situation for everyone involved. While this was manageable within my personal relationships, my work status did not survive the sudden loss of agency/reliability.

On March 8, 2023, my roommate wished me a "Happy International Women's Day," which prompted me to contemplate my happiness as a woman. As I searched for an affirmative answer, I slipped into a minor menty-B, desperate to find clarity. I never had a problem with identifying with the gender assigned to me at birth, but it has been incredibly clear throughout my career so far that it places me at a disadvantage. After a couple of hours of crying, thinking through, writing a Google doc while crying, and speaking with my trusted support group, I decided to do something about it. This is what I have come up with so far. 

In conclusion, sharing our experiences can strengthen us, foster understanding, and contribute to creating a more supportive community. Let's begin this conversation, hoping it will be beneficial to us all.


 

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Lots of good wishes for your personal journey and for this project!

I'm sorry you've had such a tough experience. Thanks for turning it into something that can help others. 

The Google form I posted has had very little engagement. Compared to the stats behind abortions in America, this can be higher. especially since the Google form invites friends/families/partners to contribute. I wonder if this is getting lost because most people would have community-tagged post hidden to avoid getting sucked into drama-s and whether I should change the tags?  

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