USA – I Never Planned to Tell My Abortion Story—Especially on Capitol Hill

As a congressional staffer, I’m painfully aware of the stigma that exists around abortion.

Sarah Drory
MAY 25, 2023

In December, I went to the doctor’s office thinking I had the flu. It was peak season, and I had all the usual symptoms: vomiting, dizziness, and a bad headache. It turned out I was nine weeks pregnant.

When I got the results, I knew immediately that I wanted an abortion—specifically, a medication abortion. I’ve struggled with anxiety my entire life, including in medical settings, and too often, routine doctors’ visits have resulted in panic attacks or fainting. Even with anxiety medication—and despite knowing that in-clinic abortion procedures are common and safe—it would have been nearly impossible for me to go alone to get one. In order to have someone come with me to a clinic for the procedure, I would have had to tell my parents or friends, something I wasn’t comfortable doing yet. Instead, I was grateful to have the option to take the abortion pills, mifepristone and misoprostol, at home—a way to make this painful experience more bearable. I Never Planned to Tell My Abortion Story—Especially on Capitol Hill As a congressional staffer, I’m painfully aware of the stigma that exists around abortion.


Book Review: A French Feminist Struggles with Her Abortion Decision

Abortion: A Personal Story, a Political Choice by Pauline Harmange. Translated from the French by Caitlin O’Neil. Scribe, 85 pages, $16.

May 2, 2023
By Pat Reber

Does the world really need another personal abortion story? The answer is “yes,” Pauline Harmange argues.

French writer Pauline Harmange is a package of contradictions. She made a splash with her 2020 French publishing debut, I Hate Men, but at some point did marry one. And Harmange wrote this book, Abortion: A Personal Story, A Political Choice, during a second pregnancy which she hoped she could carry to term as she and her husband struggled to improve their economic circumstances.


USA – You Don’t Have to Be a Doula to Offer Abortion Support

Abortion is many things: pain, community, hope—and a social good, Hannah Matthews writes in her new book.

MAY 2, 2023

In her new book You or Someone You Love, writer, clinic worker, and abortion doula Hannah Matthews offers a picture of what abortion care looks like, and what it could look like if we dared to dream and invest in radical, compassionate community care. The book interweaves personal stories—including Matthews’ own abortion story—with the kind of frank information about abortion that many people have never heard. It also asks the reader to think about ways they can personally support people who have abortions, however small.

Matthews donated half of her book advance to abortion funds and says any royalties she earns will be donated in the same way. Rewire News Group sat down with Matthews to learn more. This interview has been edited for length and clarity.


“I Felt That I Had Saved My Own Life”: A Polish Woman’s Harrowing Story of Illegal Abortion

Polish activist Justyna Wydrzyńska is the first woman in Europe to be convicted of “intent to aid” an abortion. For the first time, the woman she helped, Ania, tells the story of her desperate quest to end her pregnancy.

By Rebecca Grant
April 18, 2023

On March 14, 2023, the Polish activist Justyna Wydrzyńska was convicted of “intent to aid” an abortion. Wydrzyńska is a prominent abortion rights activist in Poland, and in February 2020, she was contacted by Ania (a pseudonym), a woman who was desperate for help accessing medication abortion. Ania’s situation was tragic and complicated, and Wydrzyńska was moved by her pleas. She had a pack of abortion pills in her home and sent it to Ania via a courier service, but before Ania could take them, her partner discovered the pills and reported it to the police.

Wydrzyńska was charged in late 2021 and her trial dragged on for a year. With the guilty verdict, she became the first activist in Europe convicted for this type of crime. Her case has attracted international attention, in part because it reflected a new frontier in abortion prosecutions—targeting activists. During the trial, vague details about Ania, and what inspired Wydrzyńska to mail her the pills, filtered out, but Ania has never gone on the record to share what led her to ask for help.

In this exclusive US interview with The Nation, Ania tells her story publicly, in her own words, for the first time. It’s a story of determination, of fear, of solidarity, of loneliness, and of gratitude. It’s also a story of the visceral harm that abortion bans inflict on women, and the lengths people will go to end pregnancies they cannot carry. This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

By Ania

A little more than three years ago, my whole life and opinions and worldviews changed completely. I would never have suspected that I would have an unwanted pregnancy and would have taken the decision to terminate it. This way of thinking lasted until the day of [my own experience].

Longer full story from Abortion Dream Team:

In a liberal US state, my life-saving abortion cost $55,000

I was flabbergasted by the cost of medical care I could have died without – but surprise fees are standard in a system motivated first and foremost by profit

Robin Buller
Sun 16 Apr 2023

On 27 January, I was just under six weeks pregnant. My fertility app – one of several pinned on my phone’s home screen, I am reluctant to admit – told me that the embryo growing inside me was the size of a green pea.

That morning, I felt both elated and nervous. Between Zoom calls and spurts of distracted writing, I thought about spilling the beans to my sister, but resisted. After two miscarriages, I was wary of sharing the news too early.


Spain votes to approve a new law to introduce paid ‘menstrual leave’ for painful periods

By Euronews and AFP 
Updated: 15/12/2022

Spanish lawmakers adopted on Thursday a new bill creating a menstrual leave for women suffering from painful periods and strengthening access to abortion in public hospitals.

This text was adopted by deputies in the lower house of the Spanish parliament on its first reading, with 190 votes in favour, 154 against, and 5 abstentions. It will now go to the Senate.

"This legislature is a legislature of feminist conquests," Irene Montero, Spain's Minister of Equality and a member of the radical left-wing Podemos, a party allied with socialist prime minister Pedro Sanchez's government, told the Congress of Deputies.


A Woman Wanted an Abortion to Save One of Her Twins. She Had to Travel 1,000 Miles.

“There was no decision, really, because the baby wasn't going to survive... I’m not going to leave my son without a mom.”

By Carter Sherman
November 28, 2022

Early one Friday morning, about six weeks into her pregnancy, a woman started throwing up and didn’t stop for more than 36 hours. She tried drink after drink—ginger ale, tea, Pedialyte—to rehydrate, but the woman kept vomiting. Once chills started to wrack her body, she decided enough was enough. The woman, who VICE News is calling A. for privacy reasons, needed to go to the emergency room.

A., who already has a toddler son, had already been nervous about being pregnant in her home state of Texas. Although A. and her husband had planned for this pregnancy, A. worried that if anything went wrong, Texas’ ban on abortion would prevent her from getting help.


Abortion access in Thailand hampered by stigma and limited resources

Sunday, 27 Nov 2022

BANGKOK (The Straits Times/ANN): After finding out in 2020 that she was five weeks pregnant, Kiri (not her real name), then 24, knew she wanted to get an abortion. “It was quite a clear option for me,” said Kiri, who had just started a new job and was not ready to be a mother or get married.

But the process took a lot longer. Not knowing any local abortion avenues, it took her three weeks of research, calls and refusals before she finally secured an appointment to terminate the pregnancy in another province, a two-hour drive from her home in Bangkok.


Texas – She wanted to be a mom. When the pregnancy failed, she almost died waiting for an abortion

A Texas couple is sharing their story, because they're afraid it will happen to others.

Nov. 3, 2022
By Danielle Campoamor

Amanda and Josh Zurawski couldn't wait to be "mom" and "dad." 

Now, after a heartbreaking pregnancy complication and a new Texas law that required her doctors to wait until her life was in danger before they performed an abortion, Amanda feels lucky just to be alive.


USA – At 18 weeks pregnant, she faced an immense decision with just days to make it

October 27, 2022
Selena Simmons-Duffin
11-Minute Listen, with transcript

In April, Karla Renée got a surprise positive on a pregnancy test. She and her husband Sam had tried unsuccessfully to get pregnant before and had expected they'd need fertility treatments.

"For it to just happen naturally felt like a miracle," she says. "We were ecstatic."