The You are wrong about podcast, hosted by journalist Sarah Marshall, released a topical and important episode titled “Your Abortion Stories” on October 17. This is a collection of voicemail messages that Marshall received after posting a call on Twitter asking people to talk about their abortion experiences.
In light of the Supreme Court’s reversal of Roe v. Wade, Marshall said now is a “more propitious time than ever to talk about abortion.” And her listeners seemed to agree: She received more than six hours of messages that were whittled down to 45 minutes of stories from people ranging from single 20-year-olds and three mothers in their late 30s to women in the Kingdom UK, Nigeria and beyond.
“One of the themes of so many of the stories you sent in was that abortion wasn’t traumatic, the stigma around abortion was traumatic,” Marshall said in his introduction. “Here has You are wrong about we love abortion and we accept that trauma is part of life, but we want to work on it. We want to improve this part. For this episode, the podcast turned into a platform for listeners to connect.
The first responder said she had an abortion when she was 24. “There was nothing spectacular or tragic about it. I just didn’t want to have a baby,” they said. “I had just started a new job, moved to a new city, bought a house, and all I saw when I saw that positive pregnancy test was my dreams dying . The moment I realized I could have an abortion, that I didn’t need to have a baby, I felt immense relief. It allowed me a good career, it allowed me to have children when I was ready and happy.
“I think it’s important to talk about the stories that aren’t tragic,” they continued. “I don’t think it’s necessary to have to go through a tragedy or a serious situation to have an abortion. You should just be able to abort if you don’t want to have a baby.
The third responder, whose Plan B pill failed due to her weight, said her experience was “straight out of a movie”. She was in a friend’s bathroom when she spotted tampons at the bottom of the toilet and at that moment realized it had been ‘so long’ since she had had one need. “I knew it on the spot,” she said. “Call it feminine intuition. Call it intuition. I knew I was pregnant. The caller chose to have a surgical abortion, which she says was quick and easy. She added that she had no doubts about what she wanted to do: “I had an abortion, I haven’t looked back a day since.”
The fourth speaker, a woman in her 30s with three children, said she never imagined having an abortion or thought much about it. When she found out she was pregnant, she said she knew straight away that she didn’t want to get pregnant again. “I loved my family as they were and I loved myself and becoming in my late thirties,” she said. “I chose abortion at 38 and it changed my life. Now I talk about abortion every day. I help other people manage their abortion… It has become a gift in my life to be able to understand something that I never imagined to be part of my experience.
Listen to the other stories here.