I’ll never forget the day that I officially learned that I was pregnant.  I had already done a home pregnancy test, but I decided that I would wait until I had seen a doctor before freaking out.  I went to an “Urgent Care” medical office, instead of my regular doctor, because I was embarrassed.  I wish I had gone to my regular doctor-he’s very caring and has known me since I was a baby-precisely the reason that I did not want to see him.  Unfortunately, the doctor at the Urgent Care had the personality of a douche.  In fact, that is exactly what my friend called him when we got out of his office, “What a douche!”  He didn’t do a blood test, which is what I had wanted.  I remember he entered the room and handed me the stick, while I just stared at it in shock.  Since I didn’t move, he said in a very annoyed voice, “You’re pregnant.  I’ll give you a prescription for prenatal vitamins.”  He handed me a prescription and then left the room.

I was in shock.  I was also infuriated.  I knew that I shouldn’t expect the care of a therapist out of a doctor, but I did expect him to act like he was interacting with a human being.  I hated how he assumed that I needed prenatal vitamins.  He assumed that I was keeping the baby and that this was a joyous event, but nothing could be further from the truth.  I knew from the beginning that I would be getting an abortion if I got pregnant and it would have been nice if the doctor had acknowledged that I had choices.  I wish that he had talked to me about my options and that he had asked me how I was handling the news.  I wish that he had given me some referrals to people that could help me, instead of treating me like a nuisance.  He could have referred me to Planned Parenthood or to the Feminist Women’s Health Center.  Anything would have been better than him assuming what I would do.  By making those assumptions, he ignored the fact that I had a choice.  I could choose to keep the baby, or give it up for adoption, or have an abortion.  Choosing an option over another does not make one a better or worse person.  When he ignored my power of choice, I felt less than human.  Surely having the ability to make choices is one of the things that makes us human.

With all of the legislation lately against abortions, I am afraid that we may lose our ability to choose what is best for our bodies very soon.  If you’ve read this blog, then you know that I was afraid that my mental illness would get worse if I stayed pregnant.  I made the choice to have an abortion and I have no regrets.  What I do regret is how I was treated by that douche-bag of a doctor.  What we need are more feminist doctors-ones who values a womyn’s agency and who acts with empathy.  This is what I envision for our future.  I’m not going to try to become a doctor, but I hop that by sharing my story that perhaps it will change someone’s mind on how to treat people who are pregnant and not to make assumptions.  Not all people that are pregnant are happy and glowing, but all people deserve to be shown all of their options and to be treated with dignity.  And the best way to give someone dignity is by giving them the power of choice.

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