The state is misogyny on abortion laws

I’ve been bleeding for Eleven days now. My skin hasturned pale and it is slowly turning into a crisis. There was an option given at the hospital. If the bleeding exceeds a week, come back for review. Going for review meant talking with that woman. She would say, “nyinyi wasichana wadogo, mnashindwa kufunga miguu. Si mtumie condom kama hamwezi vumilia?” She does not care how the pregnancy happened, she just knows it’s my fault. But this crisis must be resolved. Luckily, it was a male doctor. He brought back some of my self-esteem when he said that my organ is clean and quite well taken care of. Something the woman did not even notice. A painful process of evacuation of remnants, amidst prayer and bargaining with God to keep me alive despite my sins of fornication and now murder.
The next weeks were spent every morning in church. Prayer after prayer over the consequences of my actions. School performance dropped and through thinking about my crimes, I realized I needed to change my line of study from what I was doing to what I truly loved.
Sitting in that group with women sharing my experiences, I asked, who among you has ever had an abortion. They all raised their hand, ALL the nine ladies. Some started crying. I was shocked because for a long time I thought I was a careless person to have trusted that man and not taken the precautions that I needed to. One lady asked, what difference would we have made, what should we have done. Maybe that way we can reach our young sisters and daughters.

I had met Christian in University politics. We were deeply engaged in the system. He was a medical student and had won chairmanship. My boyfriend had been away for eight months now. I was starting to feel the effects of a long distance relationship. Christian participated in sports, as a Rugby player. He was well built. He was an intellectual – the common thread that ran through my lovers.
After six months of seeing each other with me playing hard to get, I gave in to the emotions. I was an open minded girl. I carried condoms with me and insisted on their use. To the best of my knowledge, we used them all through.
Then I started feeling different, something in me had changed. I discussed it with Christian and he said I was pregnant. So I looked at him with this disbelieving face, how can I be pregnant? we had not had unprotected sex. He off-handedly said that he didn’t know who I had been sleeping with besides him. I was emraged by the insinuation when he was the only man I was seeing. I told him that I would take the test. if I was pregnant then the relationship was over for it would mean betrayal. Of course to me this wasn’t possible. We got to the chemist, I peed on the test and true enough, I was pregnant.
I got to my room angry, frustrated and pained, betrayed by the man I trusted. I did everything right but I now was pregnant. How do I tell anyone about this when we all know that we should be responsible. I was there talking to girls and women about responsibility and now here I am pregnant. What would the church say? who would marry me with a child? my mother will kill me! These thoughts raced through my mind and I realized I was alone. I had blocked Christian on all my access channels, blocked and deleted his number and any attempts he made to reach me were futile. A girl I knew told me that I could have a safe abortion at a clinic. She took me there. I explained myself to the doctor and he sent me to the nurse who really made it her mission to guilt trip me.
What could I have done differently, really? I think nothing. I have done what I could then and didn’t have to live with the guilt anymore.
The conversation on abortion cannot be held without sex education. Sex conversations are a taboo and people think that having them is like teaching children to have sex. A proposal was made that condoms be introduced in schools and the number of influential people against it were many. It is not just in teens but even adults find it a challenge to have these conversation about birth control and sex. Sex is at the core of family union, yet it is viewed with fear and shame. And you wonder why shame and fear are the only ways we know how to parent.
By decriminalizing abortion, you allow for sex education and introduction of birth control lessons. You allow for safe health care. It is for these pretence that we have Mugo Wairimu and many back street doctors undertaking unsafe and abusive handling of clients as they are the only source of hope for the women.
The state continues to discriminate and punish women by denying them this access. The role of parenting is not just about carrying pregnancy to term and giving birth, it is the emotional, physical, psychological and material concerns. If the government insists on having abortion criminal, then they should give an allow

 
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2 Comments

  1. Eve November 20, 2018 at 9:07 am

    Wow! This view is on point. The whole contraception ,abortion, sex debate is so masculinised i wonder why women dont see it for what it is. An attempt to control women! Abortions will continue to happen whether we crininalize or not. Criminalizing only makes them unsafe. And only unsafe for the poor, dependent women. Independent women who are the outliers, can afford to purchase a safe one with counseling and aftercare included. Do we hate poor women? Do we want them to keep dying from unsafe abortions? Why do we pretend to care about life, if we only care about a foetus, and not the fully formed human who will die procuring an unsafe abortion? Who takes care of the emotional psychological needs of the children born to parents who want nothing to do with them? Do we care about ‘life’ as the act of existing, or life as quality life with dignity?

    Reply
  2. Nathaniel November 21, 2018 at 9:43 am

    Allow me to pick this line…”The role of parenting is not just about carrying pregnancy to term and giving birth, it is the emotional, physical, psychological and material concerns.”
    Well put

    Reply

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