I don't have much to write about the clinic this week - the only notable thing that happened was that Mr. Mumbles called a couple of the escorts "she-devils". Awesome. So I thought I would share two positive stories that I've heard this week.
The first is from a friend in a different city, who was talking to a woman who was recently at the clinic. The woman was suffering from a disease that would have made continuing the pregnancy absolutely unbearable, so, even though it was a wanted pregnancy, she chose to have an abortion rather than suffer. She told my friend that it made her feel angry and upset to see the protesters out there, because they didn't know anything about her situation and what she was dealing with. She also said that if the escorts hadn't been there, she might not have been able to go in. She said they were helpful, non-judgemental, and friendly, and if she lived in Fredericton she would volunteer here as well.
A lot of people don't realize that the escorts are volunteers, so it's wonderful to hear from the patients that they are making a difference. I'm so proud of my little gang of blue-pinneyed heroes, for being so awesome and friendly and completely committed to making the experience easier for women coming to the clinic.
The other story I heard from JD, another friend of mine who happens to be an escort. She said she ran into a guy she used to go to school with, and while making small talk about the latest stuff that was going on in their lives, the guy said that his girlfriend was pregnant, and he was going to "make her get an abortion". JD was (obviously) taken aback, but had the presence of mind (and feminist awesomeness) to explain to him that it was a woman's choice to make, and to suggest that he talk things out with his girlfriend and maybe they could come to a decision together, instead of telling her what to do and possibly completely alienating her. JD said that a couple weeks later the guy's Facebook status said he was going to be a proud papa. :)
Choice is so, so important. I know that it seems like some of the time my only concern is that women can access safe, legal abortion if that's the choice they make, but the bigger issue is that women can actually MAKE that choice. Our staff is not interested in providing abortions to people who don't want them. As a society, we shouldn't be interested in forcing women to stay pregnant when they don't want to be. Every individual woman deserves the right to make decisions about her own body. So I am super impressed and proud of JD for helping that guy to understand that. I hope that he and his girlfriend can help each other stay happy and healthy and have a wonderful child.
Happy long weekend everyone!