USA – Beyond the ‘abortion pill’: Real-life experiences of individuals taking mifepristone

May 17, 2023
By Becky Sullivan

For a while, it was known as RU-486. It's called Mifeprex or mifepristone – but many know it as "the abortion pill." It is one of two drugs – along with misoprostol – that are used in more than half of abortions in the U.S. now. And it is the subject of a federal court case that could make it illegal.

As attorneys gather in New Orleans this week at the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals to argue whether this medication should be removed from the market all over the country, NPR asked people to share their experiences with using mifepristone. More than 150 people responded.


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:

“Some Anti-Abortion People Will Say Our Situation Was Different. It’s Not.”

Three stories of people navigating a new world of restrictions post-Roe

Katie Herchenroeder
April 13, 2023

One woman had already decorated the nursery. Another had picked out a name, something with family history. A third woman was sifting through her oldest child’s clothes to see what might fit the next addition to the family. Their hopes had risen over the months; plans were taking form. Then the appointment happened.

For those who must terminate their pregnancy for medical reasons, or undergo a TFMR, as the procedure is known, the need typically becomes apparent during an appointment that takes place later in the second trimester, after week 16 or 17, an important phase for fetal development—and a period that has become highly politicized and regulated in post-Dobbs America.


USA – We’re Thankful for Our Abortions

Many people who have abortions celebrate their experience. Here’s why my colleagues and I at We Testify are thankful.

By Nikiya Natale
Nov 24, 2022

This time of year is… complicated. For many people, this season calls for reflection and gratitude. This year I find myself reflecting not only on all the people I love and cherish but also on the outcomes and impact of the midterm elections, and on why our nation celebrates the complicated holiday of Thanksgiving at all.

This holiday is founded on the unforgivable genocide of Native Americans, and my commitment to justice for all people makes it difficult for me to celebrate things I am thankful for. And the harsh reality is that the utter disregard for all Indigenous people in the 1800s fuels the same systems of white supremacy that dehumanize all of us today. Black lives are taken by the police and the prison-industrial complex, any sense of LGBTQ+ peace and tranquility has been obliterated by gun violence and hate, and, ultimately, the small promise of abortion access guaranteed by Roe v. Wade was stripped away by an illegitimate Supreme Court.


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."


USA – How the first abortion speak-out revolutionized activism

Fifty years ago, under the banner of a group known as Redstockings, women gathered in a West Village basement to share their abortion stories, a radical act that ripples through movements today.

OCTOBER 19, 2022

“I can tell you the psychological and sociological effect the law has had on me: It’s made me angry!” a woman yelled across the crowded auditorium of the New York City Health Department.

It was February 13, 1969, and a phalanx of female protesters had dramatically interrupted the staid proceedings of New York State’s Joint Legislative Committee on the Problems of Public Health. The issue under discussion was whether or not to liberalize the state’s 86-year-old criminal abortion statute and allow for legal abortion in cases where a woman’s physical or mental health was at risk, or when she was a victim of rape or incest.


Indian women cautious about Supreme Court’s ‘historic’ abortion ruling

Abortion rights have been extended to unmarried women, but how will this affect women’s lives in reality?

Deepa Parent
12 October 2022

Women who have had abortions in India fear the extension of abortion rights “will do nothing to change the rot in our society”.  They say class inequality and prejudice against women still present the biggest barriers to accessing equal reproductive rights in the country.

Their stark warnings contrast with the hopeful note struck by many Indian women and reproductive rights activists, who have called the Supreme Court’s ruling on 29 September “historic” and “progressive”.


Before Roe, What Was It Like To Talk About Abortion?

BY MARY GORDON, Vogue Magazine
October 10, 2022

It is the fall of 1971. I have just walked into a room in a church basement, where there is a meeting of NARAL, the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws, the organization created two years earlier by Betty Friedan. Although abortion had been legal in New York since 1970, it was still illegal in most states.

I’ve moved to Syracuse—the first time I have lived outside the New York metropolitan area. I’m feeling a bit unmoored, not yet at home in my MFA program, and missing the political engagement I had experienced as a college student at Barnard and Columbia.