Sharing this part of my experience, my life, my journey, however you want to phrase it, I feel is very important right now.
I have a voice that expresses what many women feel they cannot.
Or have shame around feeling or sharing. And there’s a huge amount of judgment about what I am going to talk about.
We have the election looming and something that really preys on my mind is that if this current government does get back in, they not only want to re-introduce the religious freedom bill, which basically gives people a reason to discriminate.
I know that they’ll be looking at what’s happening over in America with women’s body autonomy with a lot of interest.
So this is why I really wanted to share my story because we have all of the conversations happening, you know, is this ethical, you know, when does life begin stuff.
And my understanding in the Bible and I’m open to be corrected if I’m wrong, is that life begins at the first breath, not at conception.
But we all know that the religious hardcore religious fanatics cherry pick, what they like to quote out of the Bible, what suits their agenda. But this isn’t, I’m not here tonight to pick apart the Bible or.
I believe this is a conversation with everybody, whether it’s bottom body autonomy or whether it’s, forcing women to carry a child to term, huge extremes over in America. I don’t think they actually understand how the women’s reproductive system actually works.
But I really wanted to share my story because I want to get out of the hypotheses and the maybes and the legalities and all of that stuff. I want to bring it back to real experience in what I call the unholy Trinity. I know my experience is not unique to.
My story takes us back to 26 years ago or 25 years ago. And believe it or not, I was very malleable.
I didn’t have a voice, and I didn’t know how to use that voice to its full effect. So even when I would speak and say to people say to my partners, my choice was to never be a mother.
They’ve always had reasons and behaviours and ways to override that decision that I had made to not embrace the maternal instinct that apparently all women have and to have children.
So, let me introduce you to Kevin, uh, delightful. We basically met through a mutual friend.
He moved into our house as a housemate a week after we moved in, we got together and two weeks after that, he proposed.
Now, back in those days, I didn’t know how to say no. My brain was going, tell him no. Tell him to ask you again in six months’ time.
And then another part of my head going, all your friends are getting engaged.
So I said, okay, okay. Yeah, sure. Let’s get married. Part of me died inside when I said it, but I didn’t know how to say no. So I said, yes, but this is the important part of the proposal I actually said to him.
“But you have to understand if you want to marry me this means never no children ever. I never want to have children”.
And his response was, “You’re amazing. I love you. You’re enough for me. I don’t need children.”
He had some very strong views from a former relationship with his, and one of those was that women are not allowed to go on the pill.
It’s bad for their body or bad. I can understand that, you know, 20 plus years ago, it wasn’t great. I don’t think it’s actually that much better now to be honest. So I’m like, okay, well, why go on the pill? But do you ever refuse to wear condoms? You refuse to use condoms and he would not get a vasectomy?
Nope, too much of a risk for him to get a vasectomy.
No, he’ll use the good old rip her out as a model of contraception. So that was okay for a little while, but then when you didn’t, he’s 30 seconds of pleasure was more important than my express desire to not conceive.
We looked at each other and we both knew, we just knew we just had this knowing it’s like, when you know the sun’s going to rise in the morning, you know, it’s good to breathe fresh air.
We knew that a baby was conceived.
And he said to me, no, you cannot go and get the morning after pill.
Now I know you’re probably sitting there watching this going, oh my God. He told you that you couldn’t go. Well, I love you. Just expect me to just go marching down there and go, well, I’m going that’s 22. Cross my fingers and hoped that somehow, we were wrong.
We were not wrong.
So the first pregnancy was painful.
I was bleeding.
They suspected it was ectopic.
And they said it wasn’t viable.
So what am I going to do? Am I to just sit and wait and see if it sticks safe that doesn’t stick, stay in pain. Keep bleeding, risk my own health or maybe put myself first.
Put my desires to not be a parent realign that. And go and get treatment because abortion is healthcare.
It’s something that people seem to have forgotten?
It is healthcare women’s right to choose and something she discusses between a doctor. So we had the discussion.
Do we wait? Do we see, do it?
And you know what? My darling fiance washed his hands that completely.
He had had his pleasure. He didn’t have to experience the pain, the bleeding, the cramps, the whole hormone shifts.
He washed his hands of it.
So I went and had the DNC. My first encounter with forced birthers.
But once it’s born they don’t give two shits about what happens to it.
But don’t care about the health and mental health of the mother, the financial stability, they only care about the unborn.
So that was my first encounter with them as well.
And I said to them, I said, I’m having a miscarriage and that like, you should just wait, like even it was tormenting.
It was shaming.
It was judging and it was not a situation I should ever even get there. I was.
And on a side note, obviously I didn’t get married to this guy. He ended up having an affair, because that, among a couple of other things that happened in my life around that time, put me into quite the depression.
And, I dodged a bullet. This was a man who was wanting to make vows with me till death do us part. Health and sickness. Yeah, the moment I went through that process and was quite depressed and under pressure, he went and had an affair.
You tell me what I should have seen and waited on, maybe potentially to risk my life, to be with somebody who couldn’t even honour the vows it had yet to speak?
No, no, I don’t know about that, but it was my right to choose because in the end it was something that I didn’t even want to begin with. So moving on a few years later, I was having the time of my life, 23, 24, by the end, at 24, I think.
Yeah. And was out one night and met Steven the bot. Came across as very charming to begin with and we swap phone numbers and Fs state. It’s like, take a ride on the bike. We can never stop. We can do, you know, we can do all this cool stuff. And so we went and had dinner, rode on the bike, had a spa.
And in that process, there was a bit of alcohol involved. But even so. I actually said to him, I’ve just come off the pill. We need to use protection.
Guess what the F and so-and-so stealthed me, For those of you that don’t know, what’s stealthing is, and ladies, this is something you definitely need to educate your daughters around.
It is sexual violence. I’m going to call it is sexual violence. So stealthing is when, during intimacy, during penetration, the guy takes off the condom and doesn’t tell you and finishes the act inside.
His pleasure above my request and my wishes.
He lied about it and it wasn’t until I was at work when I said to the girl, I work with, I don’t know what’s wrong with me. I cannot stop eating. I am so hungry all the time.
And she said, No pregnant all you like, I don’t think so. I don’t know how I could be. I’m careful because every other time that Steven and I had been together we had been very careful
When I went back to him, he admitted what he done.
And then once again, So, what do you want to do? Do you want it?
How many other women has he done that?
So once again, another man, he put his pleasure above my very expressed desires who refuse to respect and acknowledge my body autonomy, but his two minutes of, of additional pleasure impregnated me.
So I made the decision. No, I’m not going to have this. And you might think, oh, you know, you’ve been drinking, he’d probably had some drinks.
Maybe it was an honest mistake. You know, stuff happens thoughtlessly.
You can make all the excuses that you want for this man. But for, for someone to deliberately remove a condom, there’s thought that, that’s not an accident.
That doesn’t just happen. He admitted to it, but the thing was after it happened he turned up at my house one night and I had a male friend over. We were just chatting and he lost it.
The real side of this man came out a, the UC threatening violence, writing abuse in the dust, on my car window.
Screaming in my face.
Imagine living with somebody like.
Or if you didn’t stay with that person, how controlling they would feel alive. And I can say this because a couple of years later, he attempted to come back into my life.
He didn’t like my friends. He didn’t like my lifestyle choices and he wanted me to go and work for him. He was a state manager in a carpet company.
He wanted me to go work in their display centre. So carpet for six days. But you need something where it’s meant you won’t be able to go out. You’ll just be working all the time.
You’ll be with me all the time.
You still with me once stopping me from doing it again.
He’d probably be like, Kevin, you can’t be on contraception.
Controlling. No good mental health.
So if the sake of some cells, honestly, It’s right or fair to tie a woman to a man who would have ended up destroying her?
And the third one, Toby, Toby, we actually known each other for quite a while through mutual. Probably for about two or three years even. And, you know, we started seeing each other. I don’t even know how that kind of happened.
I never thought he was interested in me. And one of my friends had been interested in him for a while.
So it was kind of like, you don’t cross that line, but then she was like, go date. This guy. He’s awesome. You to be great. She had somebody else in there. So there was a lot of drugs involved in their relationship. A lot of partying. It’s not a part of my life now but was back in the day.
It all was definitely a coping mechanism.
I remember this not, and once again, a man’s pleasure or man’s decision around how I should live my life, whether or not I should be in. He decided his decision was more important than my express wishes for my own body. I told him I didn’t want to have children.
And this particular night, while being intimate, he said to me, you have to be. I’m like, I don’t really think, no, you have to be a mother. You need to pass your genes down. You would be the most amazing mother. You not being a mother is wrong. You have to be a mother.
And then he proceeded to take off the condom without telling me it was dark. There’s no lights on. I couldn’t tell if I couldn’t feel the difference and it resulted in a pregnancy.
His belief that I should be a mother.
But when I found out what I was pregnant, I was at work and started bleeding.
I took myself to the emergency room. I didn’t even know I was pregnant.
And once again, it was like, look, we can keep miscarrying. It’s probably not going to be viable, but you could wait another two or four weeks, you know, see how it goes.
It’s obviously not meant to be just; I know I’m, I’m a great. Fabulous. Fabulous cat mom, like cat sitting here on my lap. While I share this with you, it was never something that I’ve wanted. And it was obviously something that just wasn’t meant to be.
But in three instances, men’s express desire for their own beliefs, their own pleasure, whatever it was. And going back to the first one, his mother and sisters were so mad that I didn’t want to have.
Was there a treatment in that, you know what I like to believe the best in people, but I actually think it was very, very deliberate, very deliberate.
And this is why I’m sharing this because if I had, have had all three of those children, or even one of those children, my life would have been changed forever.
I don’t see how I would have stayed in a relationship with any of those. But I would have been tied purely by the connection of parenting by their decision to dump their load inside me, without my permission to knowingly risk, getting me pregnant for whatever their reasons were.
My life would have been dramatically changed forever.
And this is why abortion is helpful. I had enough with my own mental health issues to have to worry about a baby or a child or looking after someone else.
Now, there is no judgment here on the women who love being moms and love having babies and for the women who can’t conceive..
It’s a massive shift, a massive change for women, for their finances, for the mental and emotional health, their bodies, their lifestyle, their opportunities, their whole lives..
The fact is abortion is health care.
Now, if you’re watching this and you don’t agree and you are a forced birther. The only way I would call you pro-life as if you foster children or you’ve adopted children, or you donate a shit ton of time and money to those kids whose parents can’t parent them.
And if you’re here, I don’t know why, but if you’re undecided around these things and you’ll looking at the election in Australia this weekend, just remember the liberal party is looking at what’s happening in America.
They want to take away freedoms. They want to take away rights.
And in Australia we have fought long and hard for women to have this opportunity for this kind of healthcare.
And I want you to remember if you’d like me, if you like, what I do, if you like, how I show up, if I hadn’t been forced to have any of those three children, I would not be here.
I probably would have ended my own life. Knowing my own past, my own mental health, my own decisions, and the desires and the type of men that they were.
I wouldn’t be here.
So just remember my story. And if you’re a woman that has had to make this kind of decision, you don’t need to be ashamed.
You made the right decision for you and you are the one common denominator in your life, and you are the most, the most important person.
So that’s what I wanted to share.
That’s the unholy Trinity. I go into a bit more detail, obviously in the book that I’m writing, but just with everything that’s going on in the world, ladies don’t be shamed about your abortions.
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