I am a woman in middle age and even though I have lived with the chronic illness MEcfs, since 2004, I don’t underestimate how fortunate I am to have a head of increasingly grey hair.
As a woman I have experienced a great deal of prejudice with having a Chronic Illness which has been and is insulting and devastating, and a great deal of unwelcome attention for just being a woman. I won’t list it all, there is just too much of it. The latter will very sadly be the same for most women of varying age I have no doubt.
Why am I writing? I saw a meme on instagram, which made me feel a bit firey. It happens. The question of Pro-Life or not is now weighing heavily on my mind again. And as I see recent news reports of possible changes in legislation in the US on the subject of terminations, it can’t be ignored. Not an easy word to type out or contemplate. And as a Christian many may think I hold a certain view on this extremely delicate subject. And I may well be inviting more unwelcome attention by writing.
As I mature, learn, read, debate and observe, my views develop, modify and change. But for my whole life I have been for women. I think it is why I really enjoy turn of the century writers, where women are openly taking opportunity to use their voice and attempt to make changes for themselves and other women. And to highlight the need for them to have a voice and ultimately choices. As, may I dare say it, do men.
This isn’t written as an attack on men, more to highlight a society which can at times err in favour of men. Or an assumption that only men are involved in the decision process. At times it does feel that way. And I am aware that many may suggest what right do I have to comment on a situation in another country. Because I care about women, their choices, their outcomes, their freedoms.
Opinion, once again, becomes polarised. With a situation of us and them, groups are then vilified, with those in-between possibly feeling confused and may I say it, shamed. Because one party decides anothers right to have a choice, isn’t their right after all.
On discussing this with my husband, we agree that women need choices, minus being judged.
Do we want women seeking dangerous routes of help for a situation they need assistance with. I don’t think so. But at the same time we must value life. So as a Christian woman, who knows several women who have had to make difficult choices, I feel that safe support must be there. Not a dangerous back door route which could cause even more suffering. Which is worse, denying a person the choice or forcing someone to make an even more dangerous one? Perhaps I am naive in thinking that people care that much. But I hope that they do.
And this might raise eyebrows. Everyone has to take responsibility for themselves and others. It is after all a life we are talking about. Well three plus lives would be involved. And there is of course the question which can’t be avoided of how many weeks is acceptable, fair and ethical. Again, I feel uncomfortable even typing that.
It is an incredibly difficult subject and my thoughts on it can sway like a pendulum. But that said, I know that I am Pro-Life without forcing my personal view on anyone, whilst fully acknowledging their must be choice/s and genuine support available for women without criminalising them.
I am a mum (not every womans choice in life) who has discussed many subjects with my young folk as they grew up. Be that about the a picnic lunch, new clothes, tampons, personal safety, consent, contraception, drugs, alcohol, avoiding pornography, to name but a few. The little input I received as a young person, about contraception from a then called ‘family planning’ clinic made me feel like a slut. I didn’t grow up with a Christian background, but I understood morality and fairness.
We have to stop shaming people for their choices and situation. Whilst still acknowledging the point that lives are in the mix. There sadly is always going to be circumstances where a termination can’t be avoided. I am certain it is a huge decision to make, if it isn’t then that raises other questions. But as a society surely we should ensure it is a safe and caring one. Even if we don’t agree. Isn’t that the basis for democratic and mature society?
I may be told how can I be a Christian and hold that view? Well, those asking would need to speak to God about that, as I will when that time comes. And I may be told ‘Penny, you were wrong‘.
We live in an imperfect world. And forcing a view, belief, or decision on someone doesn’t make it anymore perfect. We have been given free will, and like it or not, that involves choice.
So that is my thought for today, and probably a controversial one.
Have a blessed day⚘
Love from here