Wednesday, 10 June 2015

A Woman is More Than a Womb

More Than a Womb

I strongly believe that a woman has the right to do whatever she wants with her body. Whether it's tattoos, piercings, or what she chooses regarding her sex life. Not only is it her right, it's no-one else's business. Her choice, and her's alone.

Yet this is simply not the case in some parts of the world. You don't even have to look to third world countries to see the rights women are not being given. Practically on my own doorstep, women in Ireland are not given their right to abortion.

Earlier this morning, a link posted by Amnesty International on the Irish abortion laws on Facebook was shared by a friend. I knew things were lacking in Ireland, but I didn't realise just how bad things were. I did further research, and what I found was heartbreaking.

Fourteen years. That's how long a girl - and I say girl over woman for a reason - faces spending in prison in Ireland, for terminating a pregnancy. The only exception? If the mother is "near death"; a vague term that has doctors worried. And this only came about after the death of Savita Halappanvar, who I'm sure we've all heard about; her life could have been saved if she had her pregnancy aborted. She was refused an abortion - despite the fact that Halappanvar was already miscarrying. And even with this new law, vulnerable women still aren't being helped.

It is unbelievable to me in this day and age that anyone feels that they can have control over a/nother woman's body; that a woman just like me, only an hour or so plane's journey away, can be prosecuted for making a choice about her own body, about her own future.

Of course, when it comes to couples, it's a decision that should be discussed and I would hope be made together, one way or the other. For these people, in the case of an unwanted baby, abortion should be an option - not necessarily the automatic go-to solution, but an option. And, yes, there's also the option of adoption. But in the case of rape victims, they should not be forced to carry a foetus to term if that's not what they want; a constant reminder of their harrowing ordeal. Have they not suffered enough already?! I cannot imagine what that must feel like, to have a foetus conceived through rape growing inside me, and be told there's nothing I can do about it.

A woman should not be told she cannot have an abortion if she doesn't want a baby. If there are women who are suffering and/or unhappy with their pregnancy, they should be allowed their right to terminate it.

A woman is more than a womb.

Sign Amnesty International's petition to decriminalise abortion in Ireland.

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