15 May, 2018 08:47

My voting card arrived today. I’m against using abortion as a contraceptive option but I’m pro-choice as it’s none of my goddamn business what you do with your body.
I’ve had close friends who had terminations due to Fatal fetal abnormality & I’ve also sat across from clients traumatized from the degrading experience of traveling abroad for the procedure.
The aggression coming from the No side is palpable. I want the right to have autonomy over my body. No religious group or government should have a say over what I do with my body. The hypocrisy of these so called Christians. First they threw us into Magdalene Laundries for hard labour, then our babies were sold from under us & now we are being shamed because our bodies can’t carry these terminally ill fetuses.
I sometimes wonder….where is your compassion for the mother?
Why force her to carry a little one that will have zero chance of survival outside of the womb just so you can feel good about yourself? If that’s the kind of God you believe in then I want no part of it.
What about her?
What about the traumatizing effect it will have on her for the rest of her life?
It’s all about SHAME.
Us irish are masters of being ashamed. That catholic guilt goes right to our core. Ashamed of being different. Confirming to whatever society / family wanted us to be.
Being laden down with obligation to church, state & society.
What will the Neighbour’s say?
The valley of the squinting windows is now online. You can snoop & sneer on your Neighbour’s profile with your holier than though judgement.
The face burning, toe clenching, stomach dropping feeling of SHAME

Until one woman says

Then another & another, until together we rise. The voices get louder. There will always be those that seek to control you. That tell you to keep your voice down. That will impose their polarizing, patronising patriarchal viewpoints on you.
Have you no shame?
I ask….have you no compassion?
Salvita died because her surgeon’s hands were tied by the 8th. Abolishing it opens up a forum for discussion on terminations in Ireland & the provision for services for women like Salvita.

I’ve heard ignorant viewpoints with more compassion for a several week old fetus than the mother carrying it. Love both? Are you deluded? Where was the love shown to Salvita or to any of the women courageous enough to share their stories with us since the debate began.
Where is the respect for each other’s viewpoints?
We live in a democracy. Folk died to give you the right to vote yes or No. I saw a person post that they won’t be voting as they didn’t know what to vote. Educate yourself!
Do not be complacent that the “yes” vote will be carried. Sadly, this vote has become entangled in extreme religious viewpoints.
I can only go by my conscience.
I have nothing but compassion for every woman effected by the 8th amendment. I will use my vote in the hope that other women will not have to endure the suffering you all went through. Salvita’s name translates as “the saviour”. In her memory I feel thousands of Irish women will be spared the same fate by a yes vote.

“Shame should be reserved for the things we choose to do, not the circumstances that life puts on us”
~Ann Patchett.

©️Fiona Ní Mhuirri

By Fiona Faery

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