Dear Planned Parenthood Protester Who Called Me a Baby-Killer,
It was a fine, sunny morning shortly after Donald Trump’s inauguration to the White House that the two of us first met. I had just parked my battered old car at the parking lot of the Planned Parenthood clinic where you were protesting and where I had my check-up. I had become used to the sight of your group milling about the clinic’s entrance every time I pass by. There were more of you than usual that day. Could it be because more of you felt empowered by the words and actions of the Great White Misogynist now calling himself President of the United States?
So there I was, pushing my way through your crowd as gently as possible so I could get to my appointment with the least fuss. But you chose to block my way, glare at me with hate, point to my obviously swelling pregnancy bump, and scream at me the words “Baby Killer.”
You judged me without knowing my story.
You cannot imagine the fury that filled me when I finally made it through the clinic’s doors. How dare you? How dare you label me with those hateful words without even bothering to find out why I was at Planned Parenthood that day in the first place? Did you think that just because I was pregnant and I was there, I was there to have an abortion?
You see, if you had asked, I would have told you that I am a single mother of two. My elder child is a five-year-old girl attending pre-school. My younger child is a five-month-old female fetus still growing inside me. Sure, I am gainfully employed, but as a single parent, it’s hard to support the needs of my children, not to mention myself. I could barely afford to provide these needs, much less to pay for exorbitant health insurance costs.
Where is the father of my children, you could have asked me. Doesn’t he provide support for us? The answer is “no.” He left us for another woman shortly before I found out that I am pregnant with our second child. He cares only for that woman, not for the family he left behind. I am currently in the process of divorcing him, and the legal fees that process incurs only add to our growing expenses.
Do I sound like a woman willing to go through the dangerous procedure of terminating a pregnancy mid-term? I hope I don’t. Because no matter how hard our circumstances have become, I love the baby growing inside of me. I can’t want to finally meet her a few months from now. And I wanted to be sure that she’d be as healthy as she can be when I meet her. That’s why I was at Planned Parenthood that day: to see my OB-GYNE for my regular prenatal checkup.
Planned Parenthood is not just about abortion.
I have no doubt that Planned Parenthood clinics do provide pregnancy termination services. But what you may not know is that there is more to Planned Parenthood than just abortion. According to this Mic article and the Planned Parenthood website, the organization also provides:
- Prenatal services. As I have mentioned earlier, I was there that day to get my regular prenatal checkup. These checkups are extremely important for pregnant women so they can be sure that they and their baby stay healthy during the pregnancy. Planned Parenthood is a place where you can get those checkups if you can’t get them elsewhere.
- Sex education. Many public schools and even parents are woefully lacking in educating their children regarding sex and sexuality. Planned Parenthood offers sex education courses for teens so they can avoid unwanted pregnancy and STDs.
- Birth control. If you don’t want to get pregnant, you can make an appointment with Planned Parenthood to get birth control.
- STI/STD screening and treatment. If you had unprotected sex, you can go to a Planned Parenthood clinic to check if you got an STD and, if you turned up infected, get treatment for it. This includes HIV screening, by the way.
- Cancer screening. Did you know that breast cancer is one of the leading killers of women on the planet these days? You can get screened for many forms of cancer at a Planned Parenthood clinic.
- Men’s sexual health services. Men can avail of Planned Parenthood’s medical services too. At Planned Parenthood, the guys can get birth control options for men, treatment for urinary tract infections, infertility treatments, and others.
- General health care services. You can get screening for ailments like diabetes, high blood pressure, and cholesterol at Planned Parenthood. You can even have your vaccines there too. Bet you didn’t know that.
There is more to Planned Parenthood than just abortions. In fact, this CNN article reports that abortions comprise only 3% of the services that Planned Parenthood provides. Also, did you know that Planned Parenthood cannot use the federal funding it receives on abortions?
What alternatives can you give me aside from Planned Parenthood?
So, let’s say that going to Planned Parenthood is bad, as you say it is, given your presence in the protest at the clinic that day. What alternatives do you have to give me so I won’t have to go to Planned Parenthood anymore?
Can you introduce me to an affordable OB-GYNE who would take care of my prenatal checkups even though I don’t have medical insurance?
After my baby is born, I don’t intend to have any more children unless I remarry. If I do decide to remarry, I have to go on dates before I could find someone to marry. Can you point me towards the direction of a clinic where I can get birth control at less the cost so I can be sure I won’t get pregnant once I start dating again?
When my babies reach their teenage years, will you help me teach them how to avoid unwanted pregnancies and STDs? If they come out as lesbian, will you help me find a counselor who can assist them in their upcoming struggle for acceptance?
If you can’t tell me where to go to get inexpensive health care, will you help me shoulder the cost of my medical insurance, as well as those of my children?
I don’t think you would.
So before you judge me for going to Planned Parenthood and call me a “baby killer,” you should be prepared to listen to my story and share my burdens. Otherwise, you are nothing more than just another parasite on a high horse that gets off on the suffering of others. You’re worse off than me.
That Pregnant “Baby Killer”